The Well Organized Kitchen

“The kitchen, being the crucial point of a household, comes first. In caring for a small family a tight little kitchen means far less work than a roomy one. The furnishing of this room was planned and provided for first, all necessary tools being included, but not all patent “helpers” on the market, in the belief that paraphernalia beyond a very simple limit is “truck.” In placing articles the rule was: Find by daily experience the spot at which each tool is most often needed, and keep it there. This takes time, study, and a willingness to change. The result at present in this kitchen is the following arrangement:


Over the sink hang a wash-basin, dipper, dish-pan, and strainer; three dish cleaners—one a plain rag (old white or colored stocking legs are the best), a mop with handle, and one of wire; two soap dishes, one with bar and sand soap, the other with castile and tar soap; a vegetable scrubbing brush and a nail brush. In the corner of the sink is a strainer and tiny shovel with a brush edge. Beneath to the left are washing powders, disinfectant, scrub brush, stove polish, etc.; to the right, kettles, saucepans, etc. The rest of the iron and tin cooking things are hung in the cellar entry.


On the gas stove stands a salt jar with teaspoon kept in it, pepper and salt shakers, and a clean plate. Next, at the right hang a matchbox and alarm clock on a level with hand and eye, and two sizes of fine strainers. These things seem almost a part of the stove so constantly are they used with it. A coal-hod stands below. To the left, two strings cross the corner for dish towels and holder.


The table is covered with white oilcloth, and on it is the bread box and a small board for cutting. Next this a plate with salt, pepper, and flour shakers, and beside this an earthen jar for cookies, etc., and a tin tray. Beside the table is a molding board, and over it a spice case.



A commodious cupboard takes the place of a pantry, and saves steps. To the right, below, is a flour-bin on a pivot. The first shelf holds all “varieties of cereals, fruit jars of various dry things, and tea and coffee canisters. A teaspoon is kept in the former. The next shelf holds all the table dishes for daily use, the cups and pitchers being hung from brass hooks above, and each kind of dish having its own separate pile. Above, some odd dishes and tea and coffee pots.

The fresh paper stopper, from a nail of cut ones at hand, is stuffed in the nose of the coffee pot when it is put away and not when in haste getting a meal. A drawer in the kitchen table and one in the cupboard contain duplicate knives, forks, and spoons, to save crossing the kitchen when working. The cook’s apron hangs by the dining-room door, and a roller towel on the cellar door. A step-ladder chair with a wooden stool, made to fit the seat for extra height when necessary, is invaluable. The floor should be covered with linoleum and not laboriously scrubbed as it is.”–The American Kitchen Magazine; Vol. 17-18; 1902.