Monday, July 11, 2011

Your local delivery joint won't be happy: making the most of your itty bitty kitchen

laziness threshold: noun \ˈlā-zē-ness thresh-ˌhōld\

1: the point where a situation becomes so intolerable that one must finally overcome their own laziness to do something about it.

"I'm hungry, but my laziness threshold has not yet been met, so I'm not going to get off the couch to go to the kitchen."

That's a phrase that I came up with not long ago, mostly to describe my preference for whining about being hungry as opposed to my actually cooking. But I recently found a similar phrase that I think goes hand-in-hand with "laziness threshold." In the book, The Itty Bitty Kitchen Handbook, by Justin Spring, he describes the "shut-off point," where clutter and mess so overwhelm a workspace that it cannot be used for its primary function anymore. In the kitchen, "clutter stops most food preparation and the local takeout place gets a lot of business" -- that's how Tricia Postle eloquently sums it up in her review of the book on Kevin Kelly's site,

The Itty Bitty Kitchen Handbook is full of tips and tricks like these for making the best use out of your tiny kitchen. And Spring should know from tiny: he grew up on a boat, with a kitchen so small it was little more than a camp stove and ice chest. In addition to small-space-specific lessons, Spring also discusses basics like cleaning and maintenance, appliances and tools, and even includes recipes aimed to use as little of your resources as possible. Though the book is no longer in print, Postle points out that it can be found on Amazon.

To go along with Spring's practical advice, Better Homes and Gardens has a collection of 11 Clever Kitchen Storage Solutions. While all are gorgeous, most of them seem to be permanent renovations that many renters couldn't get away with nor afford. However, this one caught my eye...

One of the realities about living in a small space is accepting what you have and making the best of it. I've lived in older apartments with some wacky drawers: drawers that were useless because someone installed an appliance that blocked it, teeny drawers that would maybe fit a couple of toothpicks and chopsticks. What about those who have no "utensil-sized" drawers, and only big, deep drawers? The solution above of storing your silver vertically is total genius.

And now that I've overcome my my laziness threshold, and with my kitchen not quite yet at the shut-off point, time to figure out what to do for dinner. But, um, is there a phrase that means "can't cook anything beyond a frozen pizza?"


  1. Interesting post thanks for this!

  2. Looks like a really great book. I may have to hunt down a copy. Thanks!

  3. Your posts seems to be interesting. I am going to read this again.


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