Suggestions for hiding things on kitchen counter

peabody1January 24, 2013

I am looking for suggestions for hiding things on the kitchen counter. My hubby insists that we leave out 2 loaves of bread and our bananas. I am tired of looking at them on the counter and would like some ideas on how to hide them. I thought about an appliance garage, but that was going to be several hundred dollars to have it installed. I thought about a white bread box to match the cabinets, but the ones I saw seemed small. I wish I could find a two-shelved one. Any suggestions welcome.

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Go to Target or Bed Bath and Beyond. They have plenty of storage items available. I keep my bread and boxed bread/baked goods in a plastic storage box. Works for me, sits out on my butcher block topped table.

    Bookmark   January 24, 2013 at 11:46AM
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I'd agree to leave the bread and bananas out, just as soon as the person demanding this found a suitable storage unit.

Perhaps it's obvious why I'm not married?

Anyway, I'd seek a two part solution. Find a pretty bowl or basket that goes with your kitchen to serve as a fruit bowl and put the bananas in that.

I'm not sure I'd store the bananas and the bread in the same container--I'd wonder about the bananas affecting the quality of the bread.

Then you've got the bread problem. My grandmother had the perfect bread box--white enamel, rectangular. The front folded down and acted as a cutting board. There was a shelf inside to make better use of the space. It had a flat top, so you could put things on top of it.

They don't seem to make them like that any more. If you don't mind used, you could troll the vintage section on Etsy until you find one you like.

I did find a nice Amish made one, with two sections and a roll-top front, but it was $130.00.

Or think outside the breadbox. You want a container that will keep bugs out, but that isn't airtight. A covered basket with a cloth liner? A wooden box with a lid? A tin box?

Would your DH consider retrofitting one of the drawers in the kitchen? They make bread drawers with a metal insert that keeps the bread fresh.

I did find this one bread box that claims to hold two loaves of bread, but it's $60.00.

Here is a link that might be useful: bread box

This post was edited by camlan on Thu, Jan 24, 13 at 12:55

    Bookmark   January 24, 2013 at 12:45PM
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A basket would be my choice for the bread.

How about a hook to hang the bananas? I found counter top one at my grocery store for under $10. I expect Bed Bath and Beyond would also have them. When I don't have any bananas I store it in a cabinet. Just went to find a link for you and found an even better idea! Looks like using screws are best idea for security.

Need to ask a personal question: Does he also keep underwear and socks on top of his dresser?

Here is a link that might be useful: banana hook

    Bookmark   January 24, 2013 at 1:18PM
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I have had the hook that Cross Stitch linked to for years. I has served me well. Folds up nicely when not in use and doesn't take up counter space when in use.

I don't like things out on the counter unless absolutely necessary. What I do have is camouflaged by buying or painting whatever it is to blend in with the black granite counter tops and back splash.

This is my favorite, as you don't notice it on the counter, ask my DH who has to ask "where do you keep the knives". (see link). It comes in four colors, stores numerous knives in a variety of sizes.

Here is a link that might be useful: Knife Block

This post was edited by mustangs on Thu, Jan 24, 13 at 14:43

    Bookmark   January 24, 2013 at 2:28PM
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I'd be really tempted to find someone who could do a little bit of woodworking to make me a shelf to set over the bread. With almost no clearance, so that you slide the loaf in and out.

Then I could put the microwave or the toaster or a spice rack or whatever else over the two loaves. And they wouldn't take up counterspace (or, they would, but they'd have to give some of it back)

    Bookmark   January 25, 2013 at 12:20AM
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Chemocurl zn5b/6a Indiana

Would it be possible to clear a bottom shelf, in a top cabinet enough to hold 2 loaves of bread (maybe even stacked) near where the bread is most often used? If so, could you just put it away, and hubby could get it out and use from it as he pleases and you could then continue to 'put it away'?
Maybe over time, he too would see that it was a suitable 'out of sight and out of the way' solution.

Do you think he is still trainable?

Sue...ducking and running

The banana hook or pretty fruit bowl sounds like a nice option.

Might there be 'other' counter things that you could put somewhere else instead of getting the bread out of sight? I recently found a spot on a pantry shelve to house my 2 slice toaster when not in use. Since it is not used daily, I see no need to have to look at it 24/7.

    Bookmark   January 25, 2013 at 8:27AM
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Thank you for all the great suggestions. Makes me want to say "Why didn't I think of that". I sure wish he didn't mind the few extra steps to the pantry where I like to keep them. Oh, to have a clean countertop free of anything. A girl can dream, I guess.

    Bookmark   January 25, 2013 at 9:14AM
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I don't know where I would put bread if it weren't for my warming drawer.

I found a plastic storage box that fits perfectly in the drawer like a liner, I don't use the lid. I keep chips, crackers, and bread in it. I use the warming drawer mostly for parties, I just take the storage box out and put it in the laundry room until the party is over.

I hope you find your perfect solution.

    Bookmark   January 25, 2013 at 12:06PM
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I too didn't want bread sitting on the countertop. I can't think of a kitchen I've been in that had bread sitting out as part of the decor....

I used to have a deep drawer that I put the bread in, and the toaster too! Open the drawer, plug in the toaster just above the drawer, pop in the toast, take out the toast, unplug, close the drawer. Easy.

I now keep my bread in a cabinet above the counter since I have few drawers.

I can see not wanting to go to a pantry to get the bread, but wanting to leave it on the counter is just plain LAZY.

How about if you let him know it is going to be stored in whichever cabinet he chooses, as your compromise?

    Bookmark   January 25, 2013 at 12:14PM
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"I can't think of a kitchen I've been in that had bread sitting out as part of the decor...."

I will confess that I am not a big fan of the idea of "kitchen decor." My kitchen is first and foremost a workroom. Decor is secondary.

And I can see wanting it on the counter if you use it twice a day, or even once a day. (two loaves, though, seems a bit much, esp. if they're pretty much the same bread--the OP didn't say)

And I really wouldn't want to make the extra steps to the pantry every morning when I went to make breakfast. Maybe the OP needs to be willing to shift dishes out of the way, or something--he might be perfectly willing to open up a cabinet--has his only choice ever been between pantry and countertop?

LAZY w/ all caps is a bit much--it's his kitchen too. Would you call her "LAZY" if she wanted to keep her wooden spoon in a crock on the counter, instead of in a drawer?

    Bookmark   January 25, 2013 at 7:05PM
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you could get asmall sheet of white foam board and cut sides and a top and make your own I've made several boxes from it $ stores sell the boards too

    Bookmark   January 26, 2013 at 6:36PM
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I really don't have a suggestion, but just wanted to make a comment about the OP's hubby: I'm married to one that sounds similar to hers. He does not care about decor anything else. All he cares about is his convenience.

If I tried to hide the bread on the countertop (in an easily accessible cabinet, in a breadbox, etc.), he'd keep taking it out and leaving it out cause that's where he wants it - out!

Our current bone of contention is his toiletries left out on the vanity countertop. His bathroom happens to be the one easiest accessible to guests, so I'm trying to always keep it clean. This morning he said, "I can't find anything in my bathroom! My shaving cream keeps falling into the drawer!" My response? "Gravity."

Men! Can't live with 'em, can't shoot 'em.

    Bookmark   January 27, 2013 at 10:36PM
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I keep my bread in the refrigerator. It keeps longer that way.

    Bookmark   January 27, 2013 at 10:51PM
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In previous houses I kept the most used type of bread on top of the plates in the wall cabinet. A little inconvenient but it worked. Other bread was in the pantry (like cinnamon raisin, rye, etc).

Our current house, built in 1956, has the original kitchen, complete with a bread box drawer. It is a drawer lined with metal, top metal slides open and closed. I wasn't thrilled with it when we first moved in.

Now however, we are making plans to reno the kitchen and I find myself trying to keep the bread box. I may just reface and buy additional cabinets. The bread box is located perfectly and seems to keep the bread fresh longer. It is wonderful and so convenient to have a drawer just for bread items. Also store bagels and rolls in there.

Do you have a drawer that is deep that you could use for the bread? It is a shame that the bread box drawer has disappeared out of kitchens. It is a great thing.

Husbands can be retrained at any time by the way. The trick is to make their way not work and inconvenient for them so they *think* that your idea is their idea. Perhaps move some other things onto the counter so using the bread becomes more awkward for him. Let some other things encroach into the bread using real estate area. Just make sure to have some reasonable explanation about why the items are there so it doesn't seem deliberate.

    Bookmark   January 28, 2013 at 10:23PM
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Laura, you're wicked!
Let's see if we can think of stuff that needs to go there.

A household notebook? You can fold it open.
A napkin holder--one of the wide ones with the salt and pepper as well, so it takes up a lot of space. and the salt and pepper will give it a "reason" to be there.
And then a cutlery caddy maybe? And a cutting board that you just always keep out (like my husband does, GRRR).

The thing is, the OP needs to be willing to live with the ALTERNATE mess for a good six months, so that the habit of opening the upper cabinet, or the break box, to get the bread is second nature.

Actually, if you find a front-opening breadbox, then you can put the "other stuff" on top of the box for a while.

    Bookmark   January 28, 2013 at 11:11PM
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You don't even really need the special bread box drawer, now that I think of it. In one house, my mother just kept all the bread in a regular kitchen drawer. We went through it so fast that it never went stale.

The freezer is the best place for bread you aren't eating right away. There is some highly scientific reason why bread goes staler faster in the refrigerator. But leaving the bread out in its bag or a breadbox is fine if you will be eating the bread in a few days.

    Bookmark   January 29, 2013 at 6:22AM
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Sue- I can be very wicked, in a good way of course. 20 yrs ago we bought our first house, a fixer upper. My husband did not want to redo the tile in the bathroom (although he said it was going to be the first project), he kept stalling (6 months) so one day, I accidentally hit it with a sledge hammer and the majority of the tile fell into the tub.

I then called his work, left a message with the secretary that I went to take a shower and somehow the tiles came off the wall when I bumped it. He called, I told him how scary it was, tiles raining down and that I didn't think I was cut up too badly and thank goodness the kids weren't in there. I never mentioned the sledge hammer. That night bathroom renovation began. :) Technically, I didn't lie, I may have omitted but I did say I bumped the wall, just didn't say with what. :)

Since then, whenever we have bought a fixer upper, he checks the tiles to see how firmly they are attached to the wall. I make sure to distract him before he checks all walls, so I have 1 wall I can hit with something if he takes too long to reno and I need to add motivation.

Yes, technically, I am just motivating him to do what should be done. :)

    Bookmark   January 29, 2013 at 1:37PM
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Laura, That sounds kind of like how I tricked my DH into buying a new house. Ya' gotta do what ya' gotta do when you know ultimately it's in the best interest for all.

    Bookmark   January 29, 2013 at 4:39PM
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Peabody, I'm with Laura. You need to make it uncomfortable for DH. That is IF you do all the cooking. If he does the cooking, then leave it.

Depending on which counter top he uses for "storing" the bread in plain sight, can you "accidentally" drop something on it? That is really one of the most practical reasons for not leaving bread out; you don't want it to get squished or wet. Hmmmmm wet bread.

We had one of those tin lined bread drawers when I was a kid, too. The house was built in 1951. Here, we keep the bread in the fridge. DH does the cooking, so I put everything away. He is the type to leave the cutting board out without thinking about it, but does not mind if I put it away.

Peabody, what if you volunteered to make your husband's sandwiches? Would that be a bad tradeoff?

    Bookmark   January 30, 2013 at 9:11PM
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Would he even let you keep it in a bread box? I think a pull out shelve in a cabinet would be great. I keep mine in the freezer because I can't use a loaf before it gets stale.

Think positive. My brother in law used to make the grocery list, sent my Sis to 3 different stores and then told her where to put them when she got home. I think it stopped when she threw a pan at him. LOL He still controls "almost" everything. She has to dress up like the dough boy to stay warm in her own home.

You all would love my counter top. I only have a few pretty things on it, colorful cookie jar, a set of red canisters, etc and a fruit bowl. I started putting everything away years ago. Things like the toaster, can opener. This is a photo of my last home.

    Bookmark   February 3, 2013 at 10:26AM
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Oops, double posted.

This post was edited by EmmaR on Sun, Feb 3, 13 at 10:31

    Bookmark   February 3, 2013 at 10:28AM
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prairiemoon2 z6 MA

Now that is a CLEAN Counter!! Nice photo. :-)

We always have a number of things on the counters. Our kitchen is small and I make it convenient for myself. The coffee pot has now been put in the cabinet because we don't use it until the weekend now. TV on one counter, Knife block. The main counter has a large window above it and that is where we do most of the work, so the food processor, a juicer, a large plant and any fruit or tomatoes or avocados that are ripening, the mail all end up there. It doesn't bother me as much as it used to. When I get sick of looking at it I go on a tear and clear most of it out. The fruit goes in a pretty bowl, but for some odd reason, DH always puts it away again when it's empty. But he is in the kitchen more than I am, so I leave him to it.

As for bread, it's been many many years, probably I'd say 20 years, since we had bread out of the freezer. All the bread, rolls, even cinnamon buns and muffins if we have them, go in the freezer. I put them in as soon as I get them home so they are fresh as possible when I freeze them. When I thaw them, they are just as good as fresh to all of us and we don't find we waste any bread that goes stale that way. Secondly, we are seriously cutting down on bread and carbs here, so bread is not as large a part of our eating now too, so a loaf will take a long time to use up.

    Bookmark   February 3, 2013 at 4:50PM
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Thank you Prairie Moon. I am lucky to have had nice homes and I like to keep them that way. I do have clutter around my recliner, movies, books, even a very small trash can in my magazine box on the far side of my recliner. I can't make permanent headway with my desk, always junky. My office is with lots of memories and nail holes. LOL

    Bookmark   February 3, 2013 at 5:29PM
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prairiemoon2 z6 MA

It still looks neat and organized. You clearly use your office which is great! That's a nice plant, what is it?

    Bookmark   February 4, 2013 at 6:49AM
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Thank you. All the other walls are covered with souvenir pictures, caps and maps of place I have been. I set it up like a real office, desk facing the room. I got tired of looking at the wall.

The plant is araila. It is a neat plant. If you don't trim the top it will grow like a wee tree. Reminds me of a geranium leaf.

    Bookmark   February 4, 2013 at 9:44AM
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My SIL does the bread drawer, and it works for her.
My house is death on bread; it gets moldy fast - I do not know why. So we keep our bread in the fridge.

Fruit: I have struggled to enjoy my depression glassware on a day to day basis, so I have recently begun to use one of my hobnail pieces on the kitchen table, and I put fruit in there. Storage as a decorative piece.

    Bookmark   February 4, 2013 at 12:12PM
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Emma, thank you for posting the pic of your previous kitchen. And I love the 'lamp shade' over the sink, what a great touch of whimsy.

I'm going to stand by my previous post about bread as 'decor'. I can't imagine a single place on the counter in Emma's kitchen that a loaf of bread would enhance.


    Bookmark   February 4, 2013 at 10:18PM
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Thank you Barbara. I love whimsy, good descriptive word for my home. In the basement I have Pinocchio, a Santa in a hot air balloon, and other things hanging from the ceiling. A 5 foot bear standing behind bushes watching kids in a boat and a manikin. Lots of whimsy down there. Picture is not very good.

Peabody, While I was out shopping I saw a stainless steel bread box at Target.

    Bookmark   February 5, 2013 at 3:30AM
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How about this bread box? It has a nice area to store things on top too.

Here is a link that might be useful: Bread Box

    Bookmark   February 5, 2013 at 1:32PM
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Thank you for all the suggestions. I finally decided on a stainless steel bread box. I saw some others that were distressed that I really liked, but I knew my dh wouldn't go for it (especially with the prices they were asking). The stainless steel one matches the knobs on my kitchen cabinets and so far I've got 3-1/2 loaves of bread in it. I'm getting a really cute red ceramic dish that looks something like a woven basket to hold the bananas. Everything will still be on the counter, but not being an eye sore. Again, thanks everyone.

    Bookmark   March 4, 2013 at 4:43PM
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