Polka Dot Pantry

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.

Above the kitchen table I hung a collection of thrift store frames with a mirror all painted white.  I have two different paint colors going on in the kitchen.  The brown is Hawksbill and the blue is Southern Breeze.  They are both interior satin paint by Behr.
So that ends the little kitchen tour for today.  I would say that I’m positively dotty for my new pantry but that might be a little much.  (I do love it, though.)
Have you added dots to anything recently?  (I think they might possibly be an acquired taste.)

NotJustaHousewife contest button


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
Funky Junk
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!

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  1. Mrs. Sutton says:

    Oh my goodness – what a FABULOUS pantry make-over! I am particularly interested, because I walk into my pantry everyday and despair over it. I have vowed that I WILL TACKLE IT SOON – and seeing posts like yours, makes me feel that perhaps 'soon' means 'NOW!'. Everything looks SO much better in jars and labelled tubs doesn't it. It's such a simple straightforward idea, but as you say – you almost have to reach the end of your tether before finally doing something about it! Your kitchen is divine! I adore the chandelier and the 'hutch' – you are so clever to have painted that yourself – AND the frames. I am now settling down to a hot cup of tea and a good read of your previous posts. SO glad that I found you – great blog – am now following. x

  2. The House at Bluebird Lane says:

    Wow! Love the polka dots! Everything looks so clean and organized. Fabulous job! I've reached my limit with my food storage areas. I don't have a pantry, but was thinking of converting a hall closet into one. This is the inspiration I needed. 🙂 Thank you so much for sharing. Have a terrific day!

  3. Roxanne Reinhart says:

    I think your pantry looks fantastic!! So cute and so organized. Please do mine!!
    What a great chandelier and to know it was from your grandmother, I am sure, makes it all the more special. Great job as usual!

  4. Claire Maria says:

    You can invest in an adapter at any very good hardware store which will enable a garden hose to connect to the bottom of the utility sinks faucet.

  5. Nelly@DGInnovations says:

    Great Pantry!! I attempted to re-do mine but quickly realized I need more space so it is still a work in progress!
    Yours looks FAB!

  6. Patty (Patty's Pretty Things) says:

    I am so inspired by your post! I want to try the frame projects. I love them all in white. Your pantry looks great. And I LOVE your chandy and the meaning it has for you.

  7. Love it…it all looks great!

  8. SheilaG @ Plum Doodles says:

    I love polka dots- your pantry makeover looks wonderfully clean and organized. Unfortunately, my pantry looks like the before. Wanna' come over? 🙂 I love your framed pics on the fridge, too- great idea!!!

  9. Hi there! Thanks for stopping over at my blog and commenting on the candy jar. I am dying over your hutch and all the white dishes inside! …Also love the gallery wall of white frames and the mirror. I am getting ready to do a gallery wall in my son's nautcal-themed room but still have a few frames to paint.

  10. Emille says:

    Anyone doing a make over of their pantry is in my eyes courageous! I love the polka dots too:) And the white hutch is really sweet!

  11. susan@avintagefarmwife says:

    Good Morning, Miss Charming! Love the way your pantry looks all organized and all. Another thing I need to add to my to-do list. I also love all the I-could-do-that projects in your kitchen. Anxious to spend a little time looking things over. Thanks!

  12. Imageremix says:

    Oh my, what a darling kitchen and dining room. I love your pantry. That would be a luxury for me. You have it so organized, I just love it. I wanted to come by and say thanks for stopping by and leaving me a comment and following my blog. I appreciate it and am now following you too!

  13. Jenny@daysofchalkandchocolate says:

    I'm so happy I found you! I adore your kitchen! You have such a chic, feminine style! I'm featuring you today!


  14. Meeha Meeha says:

    This is a wonderful make-over and a good excuse to edit the pantry contents! I am a dot freak myself, up to the point where I've been restraining myself from using dots everywhere:))

  15. So organized!! Loved seeing the before and after. The dots & labels make this otherwise basic space FUN!

    xo Lynda!

  16. Maury Kilgo says:

    Love the polka dotted pantry! SO fun and cheerful. I'm also very jealous of your space in there!

  17. Our Pinteresting Family says:

    What a beautiful job you've done on the whole kitchen. I love the polka dots in the pantry and the frames on the fridge. Here via the Tatertots and Jello link party. Megan

  18. DIY Show Off says:

    So pretty – you're entire kitchen has so much personality. I love the details! 🙂

  19. cheapcraftymama says:

    That looks terriffic! I think the cute walls would inspire me to keep it pretty and organized! I would love for you to share this (and any other house projects) at my "May House Par-tay" at http://www.cheapcraftymama.com!

  20. Loredana Donovan says:

    I love what you did with the pantry! Your kitchen is beautiful and I like the little chalk message board, great idea! 🙂

  21. twelve-O-eight says:

    Awesome pantry redo! I love your photos and ideas, I am a new reader, creating over at http://www.twelveoeight.blogspot.com/

  22. I popped over from the music room when you mentioned your pantry! I love both the pantry AND the kitchen! The chandy is great! I have a special one in the attic which I will hang someday….it’s in pieces right now! OK back to the music room to comment!
    Lorraine@MissFlibbertigibbet recently posted..What a Difference a Frame MakesMy Profile

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  1. […] I started out with leftover vinyl contact paper from my Polka Dot Pantry Makeover. […]