maximizing space in a small pantry

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Hi there!
It's been a little while! (: We've been a little busy around here lately so I haven't had much time to blog.
My family was here for a week and a half for their first-ever visit to our house and they just left this past weekend. I'll get a post together about their stay here with us soon, but until then, I have an exciting* post ready for you all**!

Two points to be made here before we begin: One. This post will only be "exciting*" if you find organization as exciting as I do. On the count of three, give your computer screen some good side-eye and furrowed brows and mutter, "freaaaaaaak". Two. With how often I have been saying "you all**" lately, it's only a matter of time before that phrase becomes a jumbled mumbled mess and simply becomes y'all. But if I start saying "y'all", people will look at me like they looked at Madonna when she tried to adopt a British accent as if she was born and raised there.
And that would just be too much side-eye for me to handle.

Moving on.

I know I've mentioned before that our house is a little quirky. I really love it and I know I will be totally bummed when we move some day (which is nowhere in the foreseeable future, but it will happen eventually, I'm sure). But even though I really love our house, it does have its quirks. The kind that make you scratch your head and wonder "why?"

Our pantry is no exception.

By all matters of appearances, our pantry is your run of the mill, smallish, under-the-stairs storage space.

Look! It even has an old school patio screen door (which is hands down my favorite part about it)!

And it really is pretty normal for a pantry. 
It's the shelves inside it that made my insides groan with confusion.

Oh look, my giant tub of whey is saying "HEY".
The contents of my pantry are so cordial and polite to guests.

At a first glance inside it's still normal. A little messy and nothing Pinterest-pretty, but it looks normal. Functional. Right?


Name that movie and I'll give you a soft pretzel for movie quote skill level: Expert.

The pantry looks normal until you see it from the side. Any side. 
Just pick a side.
Notice how not one of the shelves reaches the wall and they're placed on the wall all willy nilly. 

...And is that a 2x4 for a top shelf?

Why yes. Yes it is.

The shelves didn't reach the back edges of the pantry either, 
in case you were wondering.

Sidebar: those are our cats in the above pictures. 
I'm a self-proclaimed (and others have proclaimed) crazy cat lady.

Mmm. Food. Shore lunch. Walleye. Yum. Food...

This whole project was a really just a big impromptu decision on my part. I'm not too sure if husband was sold on the idea at first, but I started emptying the entire contents of the pantry and then there was really nothing he could do about it except to start cutting the boards to size for me.
Either that or he could have let me deal with the mess I made by taking everything out of the pantry, 
but he loves me so he went along with it and got to work. (; 
We're very appreciative of his handy man skills around here, I tell ya.

With the pantry totally empty, you can really see just how much of an odd placement the shelves were in to begin with.

Don't ask what that splatter on the shelf in the picture above is. I've asked myself the same question and I've come to the conclusion that you just don't ask questions about splatter that was there when you moved in. 
It honestly is just melted crayon or something but still.

We don't talk about it.

While he went out to the garage and started cutting up the boards, I slapped on a coat of yellow paint with a brush. You can't tell too much from this picture, but it has a very noticeable brushed-on appearance and it looks really "country" and cute! I thought that the plain, unpainted drywall just looked a little too sad.
Plus, it compliments the turquoise-painted sub floor nicely!

Then the re-sized shelves went up--wall to wall, might I add--and things were already looking way better than they had before.

Ahh, this brings peace to my eyeballs...

(Sorry for all the pictures taken with flash. This was kind of a late afternoon/early evening project and I was taking pictures as we went along. The flash was necessary for anything to show up!)

By condensing all of the original shelves onto one side of the pantry, we filled up one side of the pantry without adding any new shelving (yet). And with each shelf reaching a wall now, food items can go all the way to the very end of each shelf without worry that something will fall off an edge. I also had Jason make the placement of one of the shelves level with the stair landing (pictured above) which gave that shelf some extra depth space as well. I use that shelf for storing soups/tomato sauces etc that we have multiples of and it works great for that! Eventually that shelf will wrap around in a U-shape as we add shelving to the other side of the pantry. When we do add shelves to the opposite wall we will be able to nearly double our square footage of storage space without any major expenses, remodels, etc.! How awesome is that?! But for the time being, having the shelves on just one side of the pantry works fine since all our food fits and it gives us some extra space to move around. (: 

Cost of supplies used: One coat of paint from a can that was here when we moved, $0.00
Total cost to upgrade our pantry so far: $0.00

And now for the finished, reorganized product!
All awesome carpentry skills courtesy of Jason. 
All organizing of food courtesy of yours truly!

And look! Even the 2x4 shelf is gone. (;

1 comment:

  1. You could add shelves between the studs on the opposite wall for all your spices and such. Great job!




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