My Organized Chaos: Pantry remodel

Monday, May 26, 2014

Pantry remodel


Hey all! Sorry I've been MIA this last week! I have been super busy over this Memorial Day weekend.

I wanted to show you all my next large project after I got through my linen closet. Like I told you with my linen closet, I would walk by it daily and grit my teeth because it bothered me so much. Well, my pantry was the same way. I would be so happy to go and pull out my Captain Crunch-don't's delicious....anyways- I would be so happy to eat but I would be so annoyed when trying to find something in my pantry. I never knew what I had, if it was still good, or ever worse I would be in the middle of making a meal that required that one oh so important ingredient that I was SURE I had only to dig through the pantry to find out I did not have it. What does that get you- a hungry annoyed Allison. Not good.

So-I had enough and redid the pantry one afternoon. No more ruined dinners for this girl! Here's what I did to get to pantry heaven:

Before my pantry re-do:

I know I have preached it in past posts but the best way to start an organizing project is to pull everything out. I know it can be overwhelming to see it all laid out in one giant heap but it works so much better in the end. So, go ahead and pull everything out...I'll wait......

Ok after you pull all items out remember to wipe down your shelves. It might be awhile before those shelves see the light of day again. Next you need to think about what type of organizing you want to do (you get options!).

1. Use containers to help organize your dry goods
2. Store items by type (i.e. Cereals together, snacks together, etc)
3. Fit the items by their size on the shelves
4. Put items that expire first near the front.

Know what you want to do yet? Confused? It's ok. Think of what will work best for you. Do you always find yourself throwing out food because it expires? Then it might be best to put those containers in front to remind you to use them. Know you have your favorite snack but can't find it? Put all like food together to find them easily.

I'll show you what I did. I used several options and put them together- forgot to tell you that is an option too! :)

I had problems with not knowing what I had or when it expired. I threw out something at least once every few months. So I went to Walmart and picked up a few clear containers to match a few I already owned and got to work.

Once I went through all the items I had pulled out and got rid of anything that needed to go I started to plan how all the those items were going to go back into the pantry without getting to be how it was before. Once I had a plan of attack I started by dumping some of my dry goods such as Cheez-it's and Captain Crunch (I feel you still judging....) into clear containers. I like to do this so I can see how much I have left and having multiple containers that are all the same size and shape fit nicely in the cabinet.

This would have been enough to have a great looking cabinet but I wanted to go the extra step and put the expiration date on the containers so I wouldn't waste money by having to throw something out. I found the perfect solution- chalkboard labels! You can write on them, erase them and write something new. No need to re-print labels or use sticky notes, just erase and re-use. I got these labels at Target- 6 labels for $2. Once I had that I figured out what items I wanted on what shelves.

Here is the after:

Here is a close up of the chalkboard labels so I can write the expiration date on the container:

Another thing I did to the pantry was use clear soda pop holders, like the ones below to hold canned vegetables, fruits, and soups.

You can also use an old magazine holder like this one:

Hope this helps you in your fight against the pantry! Don't worry you can do it ;)

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