The pantry. Honestly, it is the biggest headache of many of my clients’ homes. It is that one trouble spot they just can’t figure out what to do and I get it. Our pantries, whether big, small, walk in or a cabinet, are where we spend the bulk of our time. And if you have a family or multiple people in your home, forget about it! It is the true workhorse of the home.
Has this happened to you: You have gone to the grocery store only to buy something you then discover you already have at home? Or finally got around to using that can of tomatoes only to discover it expired two years ago? What about the constant asking about where the chips are for snack or not knowing that there was only one granola bar left in the box, until just after you just got home from the grocery store? I am betting, you aren’t alone with the frustration or disappointment you have felt in moments like these. I truly wish there was a button that would organize your pantry in a snap, but at the moment, there isn’t.
Today I wanted to tell you about one of our recent client pantry makeovers to show that you too can organize your pantry and set yourself and your family up with an organized space. First, for a little background, this family of 5 is comprised of two working parents, three growing boys, a dog and an au pair. Like other families, they cook a lot but do not have the time to spend organizing their pantry. It isn’t that they can’t do it or keep up systems, it is that they, like many of us, don’t have the time to do it.
The Before: Client Pantry Organization
First, we came in and talked to them about the pantry and how they need to use it on a daily bases. We wanted to make sure that the items that are used all the time were what was front and center. We asked about the kids and the items they wanted/needed to grab daily and those items were also moved accordingly. We ensured that the heavier yet frequently used items were on the ground (like drinks). We then moved onto mom and dad’s items like baking and entertainment and figured out the best placement and systems for keeping those items organized.
After figuring out the plan for the placement of everything, we took measurements of the space (the most important step when ordering and figuring out which products to use a space). We then got down to designing the pantry based on all the information we gathered.
Once the products arrived, we then got to work. And listen, I tell clients it ALWAYS gets worse before it gets better because we have to take everything out. Everything…so don’t be scared! We categorized all the products by type and figured out if any items were past their expiration date. Then it all gets organized back in which is the fun part! We had planned out where items would go and got to installing and using the products.
For this pantry and many of the pantries we design, we used clear containers including all types products (linked below). For many people, when food becomes out of sight, it is out of mind. So being able to see things makes it much easier to remember about it, use it, get more when you run out of it and more. We also used open top bins so it was easier to see the item, decanted items out of the boxes (which just take up space anyways) and used closed top bins for items that spoil like flour and cereal. We also used turntables so items could be used but also seen.
So, are you ready to take on organizing your pantry? Why or why not? Trust me when I say that organizing your pantry will truly be life changing. Organizing your pantry can save you the frustration of wasting money on food, save you the headache of not knowing where things are and save you the annoyance of your children asking where to find the chips (or at least we can all hope)!
The After: Pantry Organization
Pantry Organization Products
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