Before taking on this month-long project, I didn’t realize how much stress would be involved. I mean, it’s a pantry – how could this possibly stress me out? heh heh heh. Famous last words, Sam. I’m the worst at second guessing myself. Every decision made from choosing a stencil design to purchasing baskets – all was questioned. If that wasn’t bad enough, ask friends how stressed I was putting everything back in the pantry!
I’ll admit, putting this project out there on my blog, and giving myself the month-end deadline, really helped stay on track.
Sure, I’m always going to find “better baskets” or a “prettier paint color”. Yup, may end up on pinterest later today and find the pantry I’ve been dreaming of. The truth is, it’s that kind of thinking that keeps us from tackling projects in the first place. You worry about making the wrong choice…and in the end, it turns out great. Or even better than great!
Before starting, I spent quite a bit of time looking for inspiration. I wanted to not only organize the pantry, but make it look pretty. The organization part was all me and knew exactly what I wanted to do in this space with the baskets. But the painting/stenciling? Needed some help there! My ultimate inspiration was found on pinterest – here’s Shelley’s awesome pantry that inspired me!
And here is where that inspiration took me…
I started filling, sorting and organizing – the fun part of the process. It was great to get rid of all the packaging cluttering the shelves! At the beginning of this project, I took a hard look inside the pantry to see what themes were going on in there. That helped determine categories I was going to break down items into. That is also how I determined the number of baskets and canisters required.
* Aside from the wine containers (see more below), there’s nothing on the floor. I collected a lot of random items on the pantry floor, including paper shopping bags. With all of the shelving in the pantry and other areas in our home, there was no reason for anything to be on the floor. Now the floor is wide open and easy to clean.
* Lots of baskets for similar items. I had like items floating around on various shelves – some opened, some not. The baskets are my way of keeping similar items together. Hopefully we will use up one container/box before opening a new one.
* Sizeable baskets that fit all of those similar items. For example, we had a small treat basket up high, but it was always overflowing and difficult to get down. I needed something larger to keep items from pouring over the sides.
* The plastic, metal, and acrylic canisters hold food items that should be stored in air-tight containers. I had many of these items (flour, brown sugar, marshmallows, etc) simply folded over in their original packaging. The brown sugar and marshmallows were usually hard when I needed them. So pleased everything is contained, will stay fresher longer, and reduce the risk of bugs.
* I love the way the canned good shelf turned out. Who knew 2 little shelf risers could make a shelf look so good!
* Everything is organized which means it’s not only easy to find items, it’s easy to put away groceries!
* A pretty backdrop/wall color.
* You may be wondering where all of the food is – it’s there, trust me! Amazing when you organize, get rid of the packaging, and combine like items = you find you have more space than ever. We were left with so much new space we moved our paper towel inventory to the pantry as well!
* You might also be wondering why I didn’t put baskets on the left side of the pantry. I didn’t see the point in putting those particular items into baskets because they’re easy to grab from the shelves. Things like salad dressings and pasta boxes – they create their own natural organization by simply lining up along the shelves. And you guys know I tend to stockpile when I do my coupon shopping. I worried I would end up with a lot of items sitting outside a basket and that would annoy me. So I organized them on the shelves….and it helps they’re hidden behind the door!
* Wine organization. The wine had been standing like this on the top shelf of the pantry…
I don’t have a good spot in the kitchen or laundry room for wine. So I decided to find a better solution for keeping it in the pantry. One thing I knew for sure was the wine needed to be removed from the top shelf. Why? The weight of the bottles was causing the shelf to bow in the middle – not sure if you can see that in the photo above. But I was growing very concerned about the weight up top.
I found these containers in December. These fit perfectly along the bottom left of the pantry, behind the door. I love wine and these 8 hold up to 48 bottles – more than enough to have on hand at any given time…
Wall stencil = $10.32 (purchased with a 40% off coupon)
Stencil roller = $4.99
Stencil wall tape = $2.99
Wire stacking shelf = $9.46 each
2-pack stacking baskets = $8.97
3-tier expandable canned goods shelf = $12.39 each
Baskets = $66.95 total (purchased on sale and with store coupons)
Snapware set = $20.99
Snapware 23 cup container = $17.98 total (purchased 1 with a 20% off coupon)
whole wheat flour
milk chocolate chips
semi-sweet chocolate chips
whole wheat crackers
long pasta noodles
opened bags of chips (which will hopefully be eaten first before a new bag is opened)
Could not be happier with my new pantry!!! It was not only a much-needed organization project, but fun for the whole family. We started and finished the project over President’s Day weekend. My 7 year old was a BIG help and couldn’t wait to put everything away in those nice baskets and containers.
Again, big smiles each time I open this door…