Is your kitchen neat or cluttered?
I was on Pinterest this morning and kept seeing pins for hiding everything in the kitchen. Dish soap, paper towels, appliances, mixing spoons, everything. The goal was, basically, a showplace kitchen.
That's the furthest thing from the way I like my kitchen! I use my kitchen; I like everything handy and don't care that it's out in the open. I have a jar of utensils standing next to the stove. When I had a KitchenAid, I left it right on the counter. My dish soap stays in the bottles in which they were purchased and stay on top of the sink. My cookbooks and recipe print outs are crusty!
My sister also cooks, but her kitchen has everything put away. Her recipes are perfectly neat. Dish soap and sponges underneath the sink. Mixer in a cabinet, etc.
Which are you? Admittedly, I tend towards clutter, generally, and actually get a bit anxious if things are too neat. Crazy.
The area where I actually prep (I have a long L shaped kitchen layout) is clutter free. The ends however start to amass what nots and God only knows and get cleared out about once a week. I have a monstrous old microwave that sits at the end of the long L and I have a semi-permanent full basket of clutter that sits on top of that. My frig doors on the other hand are a true record of stuff / clutter, etc.
Mine is pretty neat, but not showplace quality. I had to live like that before (both when I was selling my own place, and later when the place I was renting was up for sale) and it was not fun. I pretty much had to clean the kitchen spotless every night (not fun with a solid glass backsplash!), and make sure everything was in it's place every morning before leaving for work.
But now, I do leave out dish soap and sponges, and always have a few kitchen towels laying around. I leave out my Kitchen-Aid, toaster, and coffee maker. I have one container next to the stove for utensils, my big wood cutting board stays out, and a knife block in another corner (although it's filled with the cheap knives that I don't use haha). I don't like a ton of clutter though, I even organize my walk-in pantry every few months so everything is orderly. I used to work as a home stager in high end homes so I guess that spilled over into my home too :)
I put away the dish soap, sponges, kitchen towels (other than the ones hanging in front of the sink and on the oven handle), and toaster when we have people over.
Neat and organized but user friendly. Paper towels on a decorative holder but in easy reach. Hand soup and detergent on the sink but in smaller, nice looking containers as I buy that stuff in bulk. Cooking utensils in a container by the stove, pots/pans organized in cupboards but again in easy reach. My cook books are well used and stained but put away when not using. I have a cook book stand on the counter for ease of viewing when in use.
So not messy and cluttered but not show house empty. I believe in a place for everything and everything in its place..
In between. I am fortunate to have a large kitchen with plenty of storage, so what is out I consider attractive or too much of a hassle to not have out.
The only appliances on the counter are the toaster, coffee maker and Sodastream. I have a knife block and crock of some utensils beside the stove. I also have a number of large, clear glass canisters holding flours, sugars and oats. I also have a salt pig beside the stove.
My dish soap is beside the sink, but in a glass bottle with a spout, not the container it came in. Dish towels are not out; I have hooks inside the door under the sink.
I have a large island, but I keep nothing on that. I like the way it looks clear.