7 Ways Expert Organizers Reduce Visual Clutter in the Kitchen — 'They're Virtually Effortless!'

Follow these expert tips to reduce the cluttered look in your kitchen and create a visually harmonious space perfect for hosting

Marble kitchen by Dieter Vander Velpen
(Image credit: Dieter Vander Velpen. Photo credit: Patricia Goijens)

Most of us dream of having a large kitchen with pristine marble countertops and stylish kitchen cabinets at the heart of our homes. A sleek kitchen for hosting friends and family is certainly something to strive for but, at times, can feel hard to create - even when you routinely tidy up and organize the room. 

It may well be that one of the barriers to your kitchen looking as though it is fresh out of a catalog is that there is too much 'visual clutter'. Visual clutter is when items are all where they are supposed to be but the space still looks a little messy as there is too much going on. This kind of clutter doesn't just look chaotic but can impact how you use the space too. 

As professional organizer Di Ter Avest points out: 'Visual clutter not only affects the aesthetics of your kitchen but also impacts functionality and efficiency.' Luckily, solving visual clutter can be a quick and easy fix with a few simple tips and tricks. Here, two professional organizing experts share their seven best ways to effortlessly reduce visual clutter in your modern kitchen that won't take you hours. 

1. Cover Sockets strategically 

Chopping board alongside a WundaSmart home heating control

(Image credit: WundaSmart)

Sockets are an essential in the kitchen so there's no avoiding them but they can look a little clunky if you're after a more minimalist kitchen look. With the cables flowing along surface tops and the sockets sticking out from the wall, they are a top contributor to visual clutter.

Cleverly camouflaging the sockets by covering them with items that live on the kitchen countertop is a simple solution to the socket problem. 'If you have unsightly sockets or switches interrupting your backsplash, disguise them with decorative items like cutting boards, artwork, or even hanging plants,' says Di Ter Avest of Di is Organized. 

2. Add hooks to your walls

blue and white kitchen with archway and open shelving

(Image credit: deVOL)

If your countertops are looking cluttered, making use of vertical space is a great way to free up surface areas while also creating a tidier kitchen. Hanging items such as mugs or dishcloths can be a great way to get a clean, aesthetic look, and is one of the hottest kitchen storage ideas at the moment. It's easy to do with simple adhesive hooks and has the bonus of covering up anything unsightly on the walls if you strategically hang the kitchenware over any eyesores. 

'Use removable adhesive hooks or clips to hang lightweight kitchen tools or utensils in front of outlets, effectively hiding them from view while keeping them easily accessible,' says Di.

3. Use A Run-Off Area

large kitchen with dark cupboards, louvered cupboard doors, and dining area

(Image credit: Manolo Langis. Design: Brandon Architects)

It's natural to think that your kitchenware has to live in the kitchen. The reality, however, is that most of your kitchen appliances, cookware, and crockery don't actually get used all the time. This is where getting creative with using other areas of the home for storage can be a great way of decluttering the kitchen. By storing lesser-used items in other places, like the basement, you can reduce the number of things visually cluttering up your kitchen surfaces.

'Things we don't use frequently we should store more remotely,' says Ben Soreff, professional organizer at House 2 Home Organizing. 'If we're talking about the kitchen specifically, then items like entertaining or holiday serving platters can live in the kitchen run-off area in the basement.'

4. Only Keep High-Usage Items on display

dark grey kitchen with marble worktops

(Image credit: Helen Cathcart. Design: Paul Archer Design)

Thinking about what items you really need and use regularly helps you to consider which items need to be out on the kitchen countertops. This way, any appliance that you don't use every day can live hidden away in a cabinet to reduce the visual clutter.

'Items we use frequently need to live in an area for ready easy use,' says Ben. Consider putting frequently used items in easily accessible cabinets or stacked neatly on the countertop. Lesser used items can be hidden in a separate space further away from the center of the kitchen. 

'Keep only the essential items visible,' adds Di. 'Store appliances, utensils, and other items that are not in frequent use in cabinets or drawers to maintain clean lines and open surfaces.'

5. Organize your Vertical storage

Pink and grey kitchen

(Image credit: Mary Wadsworth)

Visual clutter doesn't just affect surface tops in the kitchen. Often, clutter can gather on shelves when too much crockery and cookware gets stored on them without any order to their positioning. 'When it comes to decluttering, remember to look up!' says Di.

Sometimes, vertical storage can actually be the antidote to your build-up of visual clutter. For example, it's particularly good for small kitchens which don't have so much storage room. 'Install floating shelves or wall-mounted racks to display your favorite cookbooks, decorative plates, or spice jars,' says Di. This will free up counter space for more frequently used items and add some visual interest to the kitchen.

6. Opt for uniformity

spice draw storage

(Image credit: Amazon)

One of the biggest contributors to visual clutter is a lack of uniformity. Simply keeping with one color scheme throughout the kitchen, or making sure that your kitchenware matches, can help to make the kitchen look less messy.

'Create a cohesive and clutter-free kitchen aesthetic by opting for matching storage containers or jars to store pantry staples like flour, sugar, and rice,' says Di. 'Choose cohesive color schemes for your dishware, linens, and decorative accents to create a harmonious visual flow throughout the space.' By maintaining a sense of uniformity in the kitchen, the space has a more polished feel and comes together to look more seamless and intentional. 

7. Introduce an appliance garage 

Sage green shaker style kitchen cabinets with a small appliance garage housing a coffee machine

(Image credit: Miranda Estes / Interiors by Popov)

Most kitchens tend to have toasters, coffee makers, blenders, and much more out on the countertops. All of these are relatively large appliances that are different shapes, different looks and take up huge amounts of space. 'If you have a large corner cabinet that features a turnstile, your large appliances can live there,' says Ben.

Bespoke kitchen appliance garages are a great investment if you're renovating, otherwise, you can designate a drawer or cabinet to house your appliances. Storing these everyday items out of plain sight may feel counter-intuitive if you use them all the time, but if you store them in drawers that are near the sockets, then it's super easy to get the chosen appliance out, plug it in, and use it as normal. When you've finished with it, simply unplug it, and store it away again. 

Imogen Williams
Trainee writer

Imogen is a freelance writer and student on the Magazine Journalism master's degree at City, University of London following her Modern Languages degree at The University of Exeter. She has written for lifestyle and popular culture magazines as well as wellness and sports magazines. She has a long-standing interest in interior design and London architecture and is a firm believer in the power of bold wallpaper.