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  • Writer's picture Sue Garnett

too many trips to the grocery store...

Updated: Mar 23, 2018

Our client was fortunate to have, what most of us would envy, a large walk in pantry. Sadly for most of us, we don't have this luxury, but how we organize has the same rules.

Our clients pantry was being used by the husband and wife, their grown children living back at home and their visiting grandchildren. But for this family, the space wasn't working. Their many unnecessary trips to the big box stores, were the result of them not being able to find what they already had, rather than the need for more food.

They needed a pantry makeover!

To start the task get yourself organized for organizing.

Begin with a plan, make a list of the items you will need and clear a space for working. We chose the adjacent dining room as a staging area for this

remodel. We bought in four long tables and lined up everything on them from the pantry until it was empty. Since food needed to be found during the renovation we categorized it by table and alphabetized the spices. We used clear bins so small appliances and miscellaneous items could be located. The homeowners were shocked at how much had been in this small room!

talking and sorting...

We evaluated what I client liked to have on hand, weeded through the expired items and helped

the couple decide which items were unnecessary. Amazing enough we only donated a wok, some plastic Tupperware and a few old dishes. The lady of the house isn't very tall and we made notes for our design to move items to her level. We picked out things that she used everyday that could be in a more accessible spot. We corralled like items together, popcorn oils and salts, labeled everything and put as much as we could in see through glass containers.

its time to design...

With the room fully cleared, measurements taken, information on how our clients live and knowledge of the amount of storage required we drew up our final plans. For this particular project we chose to use the Elfa system from the Container store.

Before installation began, we painted the walls, installed a new light fixture and addressed a flooring problem. There was terrible squeak in the floor and because the vinyl flooring needed to be replaced, we had our guys put new screws in the floor joists and the squeak is gone! We chose hardwoods to match the kitchen and now there's a seamless transition, with no bumpy threshold.

the result...

The pantry is like a bespoke kitchen larder. Glass pint jars easily seen and grouped together. Containers for all the different sugars and flour for baking. Breakfast cereal and oatmeal on the same level. All the items to make pie placed in a pie box, same with the cookies, as well as crackers, pasta and rice sorted and labeled. Easy pull out draws for snacks and chips and specialized drawers for holding canned goods. We chose solid shelving to prevent items from tipping over or falling through. It also makes for easy clean-up and keeps a nice tidy linear look to the room thats pleasing to the eye.

The family is so happy with their new pantry! Everyone can find the things they want and no more unnecessary trips to the store. No more wasted time and space.

Staged Space IDEA

Container jars can become expensive especially if you are purchasing multiples for a project. Our tip to help save a little, is to buy canning jars from your local supermarket and mix them in with a few high end products.

If you'd like our help or want to share your own ideas we'd love you to say hello at or check out on our portfolio at other pictures from this project and the clients comments.

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