Have you ever been to a point where you say “Enough is Enough” and then become motivated to change something? (Usually something that should have been addressed well before that point?) Well, I finally had that moment a few weeks ago with my pantry. (Previous pantry post.) The pantry in my kitchen is an awkward shape with one wall of narrow shelving and the other wall of a little deeper shelving. The problem was that things would get lost in the vortex of the deeper shelving and never come back out. Plus, the kids were constantly rummaging through it and to be honest, I didn’t have a good organizational system in place. (If you’re brave you can see it for yourself in the next photo. Skip ahead though, if you tend to have a weak stomach.)
Um, I really have nothing to say for myself. Nope, not a thing.
My plan of attack was to remove everything from the pantry and sort it initially into items to keep and things that had expired or that we would never eat. (Like the shrimp chips my husband brought home for Christmas two years ago. He ate 3, no one else touched them.)
The pantry was a plain off white color so I decided to paint all the shelves in a Behr semi gloss white and the walls in Behr Gentle Rain in satin which is a soft grey color. I had polka dots on my mind so I traced around a circle from the bottom of a lid (from a jar of salad dressing) onto cardboard and cut it out. I then traced around the cardboard circle (millions) multiple times with a pencil to create a polka dot effect on the grey walls. After that I painted each circle with the same white paint used on the shelves.. (I supposed I could have used vinyl or a stencil but I liked the hand painted look and didn’t want to spend the extra money or wait on an order.) I love how it turned out.
I then came up with a system to keep organized. I knew that it wasn’t working for us to keep everything loose on the shelves so I found some containers I thought would work. Plastic file folder containers from Sterlite. (Walmart.) I just removed the lids. They are not traditionally used in the kitchen but they work perfectly for the shelf design and our needs.
Here is a much improved picture of the after. Not a beauty shot, but you get the idea. (I’m loving the polka dots!)
These containers are tall and deep and are easy for the kids to slide out. The least used items are housed on the top shelf. The tags were made from chalkboard vinyl from Hobby Lobby. I just hand cut each of the tags and wrote on the labels with chalkboard markers.
I love how neat and organized everything is. It’s not as pretty and styled as some pantries I’ve seen but it’s fully functional now and so easy to use.
I thought I would share a few more elements of my kitchen since you’re already here. This photo was taken from the kitchen table towards the sink. You can see one of my Craig’s List chairs at the table. (Previous chair post.) I love fresh flowers in my home and buy them often. They tend to add a bit of Spring and a little pop of color. (You can see a few blooms in the sink waiting for a vase.) The crystal chandelier belonged to my grandma. She had it hanging over her dining room table since the 1950’s. I was so happy to inherit it last year and was a little excited that I was able to install it by myself. (Previous chandelier post.)
My kitchen has a small number of cabinets so I also use a hutch for display and storage. (My cupcake stand was from Target.)
My 8×10 chalkboard sits on the counter near the fridge. We use it as a menu board or to leave sweet messages. I made it from an old picture frame I found at Goodwill. (Previous chalkboard post.) The crystal chalk holder (originally a toothpick holder) was also a Goodwill find.
My fridge was a little messy with loose photos all over it. I ended up making photo frames with magnets on the back to fancy up the fridge. (Previous frame post) All the frames were discovered at Goodwill.
One of my favorite things in the kitchen is the hutch. It was one of the first projects I painted. (Previous hutch post.) I found it at the Salvation Army looking forlorn and a little dated over a year ago.
Joining the Best DIY of 2012 contest at Not Just a Housewife
I’m also linking up to these fun parties:
Home Stories A to Z
The DIY Show-off
Boogie Board Cottage
My Uncommon Slice of Suburbia
Not JUST a Housewife
The Frugal Girls
My Romantic Home
French Country Cottage
Addicted to Decorating
Tatertots & Jello
I Heart Naptime
Don’t forget to join us next week, Sunday, May 6-12th for our week long Rockin’ Pet Linky Party in celebration of National Pet Week. Hope to see you there!