Tidying the Pantry.

We all have one. A place – cabinet, closet, cupboard, hidden room behind the fridge, cellar in the garage – to keep the food stuffs and maybe several seldom used small kitchen appliances.  It may also be home to 6 jars of pickled peaches that you spent HOURS on during the summer of 2006, or that gotta have it spice that expired in 2010 (which was three moves ago).  Just sayin’.

I’m going to just tell myself that the majority of households in the U.S. have the same issue… that space gets messy after just a short period of time. There are levels on the continuum of “messy”.  No judgement here.  I’d give mine a pain level of about 7 on a scale of 10.  Something must be done.

For a perfectionist, as I am, this simple issue can weigh heavily and cause frustration.  The thinking there is if it can’t be perfect, then why even try or start?  I am working to have less perfectionist thinking because I do think in the long run, and even the short run, the benefits far outweigh the costs.  If I don’t tidy the pantry because I don’t know how to do it with PERFECTION, I still have a messy pantry at the end of yet another weekend.  If I allow the fear of not getting it perfect to keep me from even trying to tidy a little bit, again, I still have the same messy pantry, and along with it a sense of defeat starts building.  This time, I’m going in with a little bit of grit and telling myself, “Let’s DO this.”  Oh, and I enlisted the help of my two awesome kids to help because summer break. Ha!

I did invest a little bit in my pantry by building on a few things I already had and adding to it with similar items.  But, you certainly do not have to spend money to improve your space.  My grandmother used to use old cereal boxes, cover them with contact paper, and use them all over her kitchen and sewing room for organization.  Use what you have, or invest in some new things; it’s up to you and your budget!  Get creative!  Pinterest has amazing ideas.

So, here’s a few photos of my pantry mission.  And, you’ll notice a few kitchen drawers made this post as well.  It felt SO AMAZING to have a beautiful pantry that I didn’t stop there!  I tidied up several drawers.  I feel like my kitchen dropped a dress size and just feels sassy and free!

My original wire baskets with the copper handles, as well as the white canvas lined silver metal baskets, all came from Threshold (Target).  I had also previously purchased the two canned goods racks from Amazon.  I think the white canvas bins also came from Target but I’m not 100% sure on that one.  I went on a trip to my local At Home furnishings warehouse store.  I forget how big that place is!  We were able to find very similar dark brown metal baskets with copper handles in various sizes which I used throughout the pantry.  I also found several adorable smaller lined wire baskets with spiraled copper handles.   I think they are so sweet and break up the space a little bit.  I had also previously purchased large Mason jars with the intention of using them for dry goods, but just never got around to it.  Now is the time!  Again, no judgement here for sure. If you are in the same boat, we’re both in good company.

Finally, on the drawer project, I did find some shallow drawer dividers of various sizes that I used to make the kitchen drawers so much more functional and organized.  I bought some at At Home, and then ended up buying more on Amazon.

I’m glad I dove in.  It might be something simple, but what a huge difference.  I feel so happy when I look in there.  I also found two fun pieces of wall decor that just seemed to have my name on them.  My sweet husband said, where are you going to hang these?  I told him, the pantry (of course).  He just smiled.  He’s a smart man.  My two teens came home and saw the wall decor, commenting that they’d never seen anyone decorate the pantry before.  But, they’re smart too; they like it.

The pantry is still sighing a breath of relief.



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