HOW TO ORGANISE YOUR CONCRETE PANTRY
So many of our beautiful clients come to us who are either revamping an existing kitchen or are building their new kitchen – all complete with concrete benchtops of course! A majority of these kitchens include butler’s pantries, which let’s face it, we all set out with great intentions of keeping them neat and tidy, but they often end up as a dumping ground… for everything. So instead of just closing the butler’s pantry door (if you’re lucky enough to have one!) when guests come over, or coming up with an excuse as to why your concrete benchtops are hidden under a great big pile of crap, we enlisted the help of Natalie from the Little Label Co. to give us some tips on how to makeover your pantry.
THE COMMON PROBLEMS WITH A PANTRY
The most common pantry problems include clutter, not enough space, difficulty in keeping track of supplies and hard to reach items. Planning, organisation and labelling can fix most, if not all of these common problems. It’s all about getting creative and being resourceful.
TO LABEL OR NOT TO LABEL
What I love most about organising the pantry is that you are making a permanent home for all your items, which means you will be making a conscious effort to return the item to its original position. As we acquire more and more things, it becomes more difficult to keep track of it all. Labels have changed how we organise our homes, once you label something you don’t have to think about it anymore! Having an organised and tidy kitchen/pantry means less time spent trying to look for items, less clutter, less to keep tidy and more time doing the things you love!
THE MAKEOVER PROCESS
Before you start the makeover process it’s important to do a stocktake. Get a pen and paper, pull out your pantry and make a list of everything you own. You need to see what you have before starting the process including pulling out all those items that’s been in the back of your pantry for months or even years.
PIN BOARD / INSPIRATION
While Social media platforms like Pinterest and Instagram flood our eyes and minds with perfectly staged spaces, it is important to visualise and get an overall feel of your own space before starting the makeover. Before starting any project for myself or my client, I create a mood board. I love collating images of similar pantries, canisters/containers and décor to give the client a better sense of how the finished space will look, as well as giving a clear direction of what to buy.
CHOOSING YOUR JARS AND TIPS FOR JAR SIZES
The most important thing to remember when buying canisters/jars or storage containers is to ensure they are going to suit and fit the space you are working with. If you have a small pantry to work with, there is no point buying containers that are going to take up too much space. The other tip to remember when buying canisters is to make sure they close properly, you want to be looking for screw, clip, or push pop jars to keep ingredients fresh for longer.
I also recommend all my clients to purchase a few larger containers/baskets/tubs to store your ‘like items.’ May include ‘Oils & Vinegars’, ‘Baking Goods’, ‘Snacks’, ‘Condiments & Sauces’, etc.
CHOOSING YOUR LABELS
Creating your labels has never been easier! At Little Label Co we have a wide variety of colours and font styles to choose from. If needed we will help you select colour and font choice to suit your containers and style of pantry. Each label is custom made specifically for you. Our labels are made of vinyl and are durable, long-lasting and unlike paper labels, our labels don’t have a backing giving it that painted look. They are an affordable and easy way to organise, simplify and revive your living space!
Whatever colour you choose for your space, keep it bright and light and coordinate your colours. Match your bins and tubs to suit the rest of your pantry storage and add a pop of colour. Choose your accent colour and don’t be afraid to use it in your labels, décor items, books or glassware.
If you have the opposite problem to most of us (lucky you!) and have too much space and just don’t know how to fill it, there are some great ways to add excitement. You can fill your empty shelves with beautiful dishes and bowls, cake stands, cookbooks, wine rack, utensils and don’t be afraid to add colour, succulents or flowers are a great way to do this while using up some empty space. Get creative with your space! Use the back of the door or wall space, and add some funky hooks to hang towels, aprons or caddy’s to store all the necessities.
YOUR FAVOURITE PLACES TO SHOP
Organising your kitchen and pantry doesn’t have to be a budget busting project! We currently have access to so many great stores and online shops that cater for all budgets, styles and needs. One of the first questions I ask before organising a kitchen is “What is your budget for the project?’ This allows me to get a clear understanding of the size of the project and where to go for storage containers.
Stores like Kmart, Ikea, Big W, TK Maxx, The Reject Shop and even Dollar Stores are my go-to stores for budget friendly equipment. Provincial Living, Howards Storage World, Spotlight, Freedom Australia, Peter’s of Kensington and Victoria’s Basement have a great range of storage solutions and Kitchen Warehouse, Temple & Webster and Zanui are my top online stores.
TOP PANTRY MAKEOVER TIPS
+ Group like items (cans, snacks, drinks, baking goods, dried ingredients, sauces, condiments, etc). Store the ‘like items’ together, it will save you time looking for them making them more accessible.
+ I know this won’t apply to all but if you can, make it visible. When you are forced to look at it everyday, you are more likely to keep it neat and tidy.
+ Make a permanent home for everything. Not only will it be easier to find everything but you are more likely to maintain it.
+ Store all your ingredients in transparent containers/jars with either a screw top or air-tight seal. This will keep ingredients fresh and make them visible and accessible.
+ Get a lazy susan! They are so handy and practical especially in hard to reach corners
+ Keep your frequently used items on the shelves that are easy to access. Less frequently and heavier items go on the lower shelves.
Your favourite organisation accounts to follow