Being cooped up with the cold weather, I’ve been slowly working through the house and either deep cleaning or organizing and cleaning stuff out. And one space that is neglected but highly needed and functional is our kitchen pantry! We already have a tiny kitchen with not a lot of storage so making sure this space is utilized and fully functional has been on the to-do list.
I was inspired to organize the space, but as I was thinking about that I thought – what if I paint it? Which then spiraled into, oh! I have some left over wallpaper – so this turned into a mini-makeover that I did in a few hours. Our pantry was a place where we just threw stuff – probably because it helped cover the old and ugly, hence not being the most functional.
Tips for Organizing Your Pantry:
- Expiration Dates. I know I’m not the only one that had a few pantry items that were expired – these are easy items to toss, especially if you’ve just been holding onto them – but not actually using them. Even if things aren’t expired – clean up those straggler bags with the crumbs in them!
- Consolidated. This is crucial when you have a smaller space – I had multiple bags of confectionary sugar – so combining those into a container quickly gained space.
- Get Creative. Even though this is your pantry, have a little fun with the space! It would’ve been easy to paint it white and use generic shelving liners – but if you have some wallpaper consider using it for the shelf liners or the wall backs!
- Get Storage Containers/Shelves. Luckily I had shelves that were white and useful in our odd space – so I just made a list as I was cleaning out my pantry of things I needed baskets or containers for. In between coats of paint I made a Marshall’s run and was able to stock up on some containers to dried goods and clear trays for spices and such! I would’ve preferred all white lids, but since this was a bit impromptu – I bought what was in stock! I’m sure I’ll upgrade eventually.
- Organize By Food Group. I tried to think through the layout and organization by food group/pairings – for example – all of my baking ingredients on one shelf, spices and other cooking supplies consolidated together, etc.
For our pantry makeover – I ended up painting the entire inside, this is one of the few spaces that lingering green from the previous owners – and although I’m a fan of some color, I love what white paint does to a space, especially a small one! Since this space is not the greatest constructed – I didn’t want to mess around too much so I stuck with aesthetics and just updated the existing layout & pieces. Here is the evolution off the de-greening.
I ended up taking the shelves out and gave them a good scrapping to get off the old wooden shelf liners. They were so gross, not to mention hiding a few layers of other stickers underneath! So it was good to give it a good clean and fresh couple coats of paint. I had leftover wallpaper from my Skinny Dresser Upcycle – which I initially wanted to use this on the backs, but luckily decided to go the easier route with using it to line the shelves, which worked out because I wouldn’t have had enough! Plus I love the subtle pop of color and pattern that it adds to the shelves with the white backdrop.
The other benefit of cleaning up the pantry was I ended up organizing and consolidating some things like our tin-foil, plastic wrap and sandwich bags into a hanger on the pantry door which basically freed up an entire drawer in our kitchen! So the organizing, consolidating and purging spread out beyond the pantry which actually gave us room for things. With using up leftover paint we had, and buying some organizers and the leftover wallpaper I spent about $60 for a small thing of paint and 10-different organizers. I’m unsure about adding labels, so I may still add a few more fun and functional finishing touches.
Beyond this space looking pretty awesome and making such a difference – it feels good to have this space cleaned up, organized and efficient. Plus it was an easy weekend DIY with a HUGE impact, although I’m sure I’ll rearrange it like 20-more times. Yay, for easy makeovers!