An interior designer and a professional organizer share their top 5 tips.

By Donna Garlough and Ashley Murphy
Updated June 28, 2018
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Courtesy of Joyelle West

Real Simple is busy decorating and organizing an entire home that you’ll get to see this fall. It's chock full of organizing ideas you'll want to steal and decor ideas that will inspire. As a preview, the team behind the kitchen makeover shares their tips for making the space both pretty and practical.

Courtesy of Joyelle West

Open your dishwasher along with the cabinets and drawers you think your everyday dishes and utensils should live in. You should be able to easily unload into those spaces while the dishwasher is completely open.

Make sure your fixtures are large and bright enough to illuminate your food-prep and dining spaces. Consider swapping flush-mount fixtures or recessed lighting for pendants that bring the light source closer to the work area.

Stretches of clean countertop will make a kitchen feel larger. Place items that you don’t use daily in a spot out of sight. Opt for shelf risers to create additional storage space for those items within your cabinets.

Working with limited cabinet space? Stash spices in a drawer instead. Decant them into shallow, wide jars and label the tops so you can see what you have at a glance. Keep your favorites toward the front.

A bold wallpaper in the dining nook or a bright, patterned mat in front of the sink adds charm without taking up space. Add personality pieces like a pretty houseplant, a collection of cookbooks, or favorite serveware on open shelving.

Donna Garlough, Designer
Donna is the author of Your Home, Your Style and style director at Joss & Main in Boston.

Ashley Murphy, Organizer
Ashley is the Chicago-based cofounder of Neat Method, a national organizing service.