If Busy Kitchen Walls Bother You Too, Try This Surprising Vertical Storage Hack

published Apr 23, 2023
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Kitchen with large paned open windows, hanging plants, stone tile backsplash, gray countertops, white cabinets
Credit: Kai Byrd

I know utilizing vertical space is a huge part of small kitchen organization, but I don’t necessarily want every kitchen tool I own displayed proudly on my wall. Some of my tools are beautiful, but most just look like what they are: a spatula, a vegetable peeler, a microplane. They’re useful, but definitely not works of art. 

I could hang them from a pegboard á la Julia Child, or place them in a crock on a shelf, but I don’t like the idea of looking at my fish turner while I make my morning coffee. Plus, things get dirty on open shelves, and I’m not interested in dusting my tools before I use them. 

I found a fix for this problem of mine by accident. After returning from a long camping trip, I was too tired to unpack, so I threw my hanging kitchen caddy on an apron hook and planned to empty it later. The moment my hand left the caddy, I knew I was onto something. 

Most of my essential kitchen tools were contained in this foldaway bag that could comfortably hang on the wall. And — here’s where the magic happened — when not in use, I could stash the caddy in a coat closet, storage ottoman, or even under my bed. I could have my vertical storage space and clear walls, too! 

No, this isn’t as efficient as the pegboard system, but if busy walls bother you, too, the camping caddy is a stellar solution. Mine is a little pricey, but this chef roll is more affordable, and you could even repurpose a hanging travel toiletry bag. Just make sure your apron hook is attached to a stud so it can hold the weight of your tools. An over-the-door hanger works, too.

If you’re struggling with limited drawer and cabinet space but you still want a peaceful aesthetic in your kitchen, I’m here to tell you: You can have your cake and eat it, too. You’ll just have to stop by the coat closet on your way to the kitchen. 

Which do you prefer: clear walls or easy access to tools?