For the first time in my life, I have a pantry. When we looked at this house, it was a major selling point. Its big and gorgeous. I could live in there. I may have even hidden in there a few times to get a break–and some chocolate.
In Hyattsville, I had a cabinet pantry made from billy book cases and was really happy with the organization system I developed.
I carried that over when we moved, but after about 9 months in the house, it needed a refresh. I was keeping way too much “other” stuff in there, had accumulated some clutter, the space wasn’t maximized, and the locations of certain types of foods weren’t working. For example: Henry needs sweets out of his reach.
I initially looked at the container store/pinterest/amazon for “pantry specific” organizational tools. I thought I had an idea of what could some helpful additions–multi-level can holders, for example. There are some gorgeous pantry examples on pinterest. But I realized that I didn’t really know what I needed yet, so decided to tackle it first, buy new things second. And I’m so glad I did.
Here is how I tackled the pantry refresh:
I waited until nap time on a weekend. Way too many breakables and possible messes for little helping hands.
I spent some time looking around the “before” situation and got a feel for what I had and how I wanted to rethink it.
I cleaned the bins and sorted all of the like items. I arranged the bins back into the pantry, then decided what I wanted where. I moved items that didn’t belong in the pantry to the trash or other areas of the house. Coolers, BBQ items, and drink buckets went outside. I filled each bin and put them back in the pantry. I put sweets out of Henry’s reach and healthy snacks on the bottom shelf. Oils, vinegars, and spices are now within quick reach, and things like cupcake liners higher up since I don’t use them often.
I decant bulk food to smaller containers, so arranged the smaller containers within reach, and the large (ugly) bags in high sided bins on the higher shelves. A wicker basket for onion and potatoes is in the darkest area of the pantry.
And now excuse me while I raid those high up sweet bins…