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A kitchen can be a tough room to pull together—it’s not easy marrying form and function. But rest assured there are a few pro tips that will help you achieve that coveted balance. Here are five we’ve picked up from our savvy home editor, who also happens to be somewhat of a kitchen connoisseur after recently going through her own apartment kitchen renovation.

oxo integration 1
OXO

1. Create Vignettes With Your Most-Used Items

Chances are you reach for a cup of coffee just about every time you enter the kitchen. So really, it doesn’t make sense to keep putting away the sugar, mugs and beans only to pull them back out again multiple times a day. The stylish solution? Collect three to five of your most frequently used supplies, coffee or otherwise (an odd number of items always looks better), and find a small nook on your countertop. Arrange them together in a pleasing way, like leaning a board against the wall and employing pretty holders. As a finishing touch, think about introducing an arty accessory like a bud vase or small sculpture, but not at the risk of clutter.

Sponsored oxo dry goods
OXO

2. Always Remove Dry Goods From Their Packaging

From pasta noodles to cookies to spices, moving these items to containers is a smart habit to adopt. Not only will your storage look uniform (which is important whether you have open shelving or a closet pantry) but the food will also stay fresher longer. The new OXO POP Containers have a redesigned airtight lid, they’re modular and stackable, and each one is specifically sized to fit key ingredients: There’s one for a one-pound bag of brown sugar, one for a five-pound bag of flour and smaller ones for things like chocolate chips and coconut flakes. Plus, you can purchase add-on accessories like measuring scoops, levelers and brown sugar savers; the accessories are designed to conveniently attach to the bottom of an OXO POP container lid, making things really easy.

oxo herbs
OXO

3. Incorporate Fresh Herbs

Plants are one of the best ways to breathe life into any space—a touch of greenery adds instant warmth and color. But when we’re talking about your kitchen, go for potted herbs instead of houseplants. Not only will fresh rosemary conveniently be at your fingertips for your next one-pan chicken-and-veggie roast but the herbs will double as welcoming decor. (Psst: Consider a small smart garden if your kitchen doesn’t have a window.)

Sponsored oxo spice rack
OXO

4. Upgrade Your Spice Rack

Designers agree that uniformity goes a long way, which is why we’re on board with a sleeker way to store spices. Transfer them out of their mismatched jars and into OXO POP Mini Square Containers (remember the dry goods tip above?) so that they look consistent and their colors and textures are on display. Be sure to label them. Another benefit of using POP Containers in particular is the airtight seal, which preserves freshness. (Did you know your spices can actually go bad?) When you’ve finally finished the last bit of oregano, just toss the POP container lid and canister into the dishwasher for easy cleaning and then refill.

wall space oxo
OXO

5. Make Use of Wall Space

Clear surfaces are crucial for making a space feel stylish and neat. Even if you have limited storage, or if you like to have your supplies at the ready, don’t overload your countertops. Instead, install a sleek shelf on an empty piece of wall or backsplash. You’ll add accessible storage for frequently used essentials like dish towels (or let’s be honest, pasta) while lifting things up and away from your line of sight.

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