Start with as much free benchtop space as you can get. Clear the benchtops - put everything away where it belongs (few things really need to be stored on the benchtop). This includes items from other area's of the house such as toys, paperwork, bags, hats or books. Wash and put away dishes or stack in the dishwasher. Put out the rubbish and recycling so you have plenty of space in the bins.
A clear bench space will give you a great place to start and looks fantastic. Big pat on the back. Walk out of the room and walk back in, feels good already doesn't it.
Cutlery drawers are a good place to start as they are small and can be decluttered quickly. Empty each drawer of everything as you go and give it a good wipe out before replacing the items you are keeping.
Throw out, donate or relocate
Throw out any broken, rusted, melted or permanently grimy cutlery and utensils. This includes those tongs that have melted ends, that rusty zest grater and the spoon that only has half a handle.
Donate anything which you don't use any more but is still in ok condition, anything you have more than one of (no there will not come a time when you need two garlic presses) and those odd utensils which don't have a pair (one half of a salad server set is just a funny looking spoon.)
Relocate items which have been put away incorrectly.
If you have a drawer for the tea towels sort out the ones which are stained beyond help, ripped or burnt. Either throw or delegate to the rag bag. Donate the tea towels which don't absorb water, every home has one or two of these.
The third or forth drawer, which in a lot of kitchens becomes the junk draw, is always a challenge. You know, the one which is always a pain to close because it is overflowing with 'stuff'. Be brutal. Don't keep things 'just in case', if you haven't used it in the last year chances are you never will. We find it's helpful to have the bin next to you for this task. File all those appliance manuals but check you still have the appliance first. Throw out all the take away menus, most restaurants have their menu online now. Only keep the miscellaneous items which need to be kept in the kitchen.
This is a tough one in most kitchens so allow yourself some time to tackle this cabinet. Start by removing everything from the cabinet and giving the shelves and sides a good wipe. Now you'll probably have a sea of plastic containers covering the benchtops. Match up all the containers and lids and throw or donate any which don't have lids or lids without containers. Throw out any containers which have stains or marks from food or microwaving, and any that are cracked or misshapen. Also get rid of any containers you don't use or are odd shapes and don't seem to fit anywhere.
Don't you feel great! You'll be surprised what a difference these small changes make to how you work in your kitchen. Our next post will cover decluttering the pantry, glassware and crockery cabinets.