17 THINGS YOU NEED TO SPICE UP YOUR PANTRY

Love all the uber organized pantry inspiration going around? Us, too. Organizing your pantry isn't as tough as you think it is and no matter what size or shape your pantry is, we've got good news. You, too can have the pantry of your dreams with these 17 pantry organizers.

                  Chrome 3-Tier Corner Shelf

                  Chrome 3-Tier Corner Shelf

                 Chrome 3-Tier Can Rack

                 Chrome 3-Tier Can Rack

                                                     Savoy Copper Basket Collection

                              Bamboo 2-Tier Turntable

                              Bamboo 2-Tier Turntable

                                Expandable Locking Shelf Doubler

                                Expandable Locking Shelf Doubler

                            Zevro Double Dry Food Dispenser

                            Zevro Double Dry Food Dispenser

                                    Stainless Steel Bread Box

                                    Stainless Steel Bread Box

                   Neat METHOD

                   Neat METHOD

                                 Banana Leaf Storage Baskets

                                 Banana Leaf Storage Baskets

                                 Bamboo Expandable Step Shelf

                                 Bamboo Expandable Step Shelf

Printable hand-written labels: The Creativity Exchange

Printable hand-written labels: The Creativity Exchange

HOW TO ORGANIZE A PANTRY:

1. Assess your space and needs: Measure shelf length, depth and the space in between shelves for height. Include the space from the last shelf to the floor for a walk-in pantry. You may want to add a cart or drawers for more storage or create a home for bottled water and pet food.

2. Remove & re-group: Remove everything from your pantry, and we mean everything. Toss expired items, sort and group like items together.

3. Make a plan and a shopping list: Using your favorite pantry inspiration as a guide, decide on the products you like best and remember that like colors, finishes and same style baskets, bins, containers, turntables and canisters will give you the neatest look. 

4. Reduce: Transfer cereals from boxes and store in airtight containers. Did we mention they will last longer? Glass jars, canisters, lidded candy and cookie jars make a great look and are perfect for storing wrapped treats, granola bars, pastas, grains and dry foods.

5. Get started: Organize by food type and create "zones" so that you'll be able to find what you need during food prep or when you're packing lunches in a hurry. Create a zone for spices, baking items, canned goods, pastas, grains, salty snacks, kids treats, juice packs and whatever is important in your family. Next, designate containers for each category and get started. You'll get the hang of how to arrange things once you begin and keep in mind we have multiple changes until we get it right, too. We highly recommend a snack station kids can reach.

6. Label, label, label. If you're anything like us, this is the fun part we've all been waiting for. Labels are the finishing touch and the ticket for you and your family to maintain a neat pantry. And, if #diyorganizing is your jam, check out The Creativity Exchange for free printable, hand written labels for organizing the whole pantry and/or a baking cabinet.

-xx/deb + allie

 

HOW TO SPRING CLEAN YOUR HOUSE

It may not feel like spring on the west coast these days, but spring has sprung in most parts of the country. While we naturally want to spend every second outside, it's officially time for spring cleaning. We're talking the co-star to "get organized month", where we tackle everything from organizing closets and drawers to cleaning your home from top to bottom. And, since it can be a little overwhelming, we've put together some ideas to guide you along the spring cleaning trail.

Shop the tools: PantryKitchenBathLaundryOffice Cleaning + Tools

Best words of advice? Work by room and complete one project at a time so you are not overwhelmed.

Photo: The Home Edit

TREAT YOURSELF: When it comes to any big cleaning or organizing project, it's important to have something to look forward to. Whether that means a room or area you've been dying to makeover or tackling the pantry under the influence of that Instagram shot you've looked to at least 30 times, or creating your very own tea drawer, just because.

 

     Photo: Martha Stewart |  Drawer Organizers                                                    

     Photo: Martha StewartDrawer Organizers                                                    

GETTING STARTED:

- Make a date. You might need a few hours, a Saturday, the weekend or a month, but whatever that time looks like, decide when you're going to tackle your cleaning, do it at your own pace and stick to your schedule or commitment.

- Invest in good cleaning solutions, supplies and tools. We recommend The Laundress and Murchison-Hume, they're all natural, planet-friendly and two of the best cleaning brands on the market, which is why we offer them at The Organizing Store. You'll definitely need a bucket, storage caddy and cleaning gloves, but here's a complete list of Spring Cleaning Tools you're going to need.

  • bucket
  • cleaning caddy
  • microfiber cleaning cloths
  • bar mops or cotton cleaning cloths
  • feather duster
  • vacuum cleaner with attachments
  • mop
  • carpet cleaner (optional)
  • blind cleaner
  • scrub brushes – large and small (or an old toothbrush)
  • window squeegee
  • lint roller
  • trash bags

With tools in hand, the only thing you'll need now is a proper Spring Cleaning Checklist. Our favorite is from Clean Mama.

Photo: Clean Mama

Photo: Clean Mama

Before you get started, here's a few tips:

1. Declutter. Moving from room to room, toss or donate using the questions "have I used this, do I need it"? Anything that was in question in January when you made all those New Year's resolution and didn't get rid of. Yeah, those. They're gone.

2. Spring Cleaning means "deep cleaning" and digging into areas that you might not see, but you know there is some serious dust lingering there. Vacuum and clean upholstered furniture, cushions and toss pillows. Shake throw pillows well (outside) and fluff out dust until no longer see any particles flying. Use a damp cloth to clean any spots and depending on the fabric, use a sweater comb to remove any 'pilling'. Clean windows inside and out, including the screens. Dust lampshades, windows, blinds, window sills and baseboards, hard to reach ceilings, ceiling fans, and areas that are not cleaned weekly by you or your housekeeper.

3. Plan on spending the most time in the kitchen and know this is not typically a one-day job. Thoroughly clean counter-tops, food prep areas, the inside (and out) of the microwave, refrigerator, freezer and anywhere food is prepared, cooked, kept or served. Wipe out upper and lower cabinets, empty and wipe out drawers and drawer organizers with a damp cloth. Clean and polish small appliances such as coffee pots and the dishwasher, using white vinegar.

4. Love your pantry. This is an area where you'll see big results. If you've checked your favorite organizing Instagram account lately, we promise you'll find plenty of pantry inspiration there. Discard out of date spices, organize canned goods by type and remove boxes wherever possible. Store cereals, flour, sugar, pastas, beans, tea bags and other dry goods in containers, covered glass jars and canisters. Organize spices to meet your needs, either alphabetical or by use with cabinet, wall, countertop spice organizers. To keep spices looking really neat, use clear spice jars. Add labels or your hand-written skills to each jar.

5. The extras: Wash your bed pillows, flip your mattresses, clean vents and replace filters, wash or dry-clean throw rugs and shampoo carpets. Vacuum behind the washer and dryer, and remove any lint from the hoses that lead to the outside. Replace batteries in smoke alarms, replace light bulbs, toss out of date medicines and refill anything from the medicine cabinet that might be running low, such as band-aids or cold and fever medicines.

 

TRY SOMETHING NEW:

The drawers in our kitchen are really, really deep, so I was able to create themed drawers for whiteware, bakeware, mixing bowls, and items that usually would go into a cabinet. I think one of my favorites is my entertaining drawer, where I keep ramekins, individual trifle bowls, appetizer forks, spoons and cheese knives and appetizer plates. With everything at my fingertips, I can pull together an app platter in literally, minutes.

-xx allie + deb

CREATE YOUR BEST #SHELFIE

If you're going out of your way to find inspiration on how to organize and style your bookcases and shelves, you probably have a slight obsession with #SHELFIES. That's cool, because we're completely digging them right now. Not an expert? You're about to be. Color code, stack and file your favorite books (spines facing out), add storage baskets, bins, document boxes, bookends, picture frames and a tchotcke or two to make your otherwise boring shelves look amazing.

Deborah Shearer, Deborah Loves

Deborah Shearer, Deborah Loves

Curate + Color Code: Shelfies are more than organizing and making things neat. Think of them as the opportunity to display your passions and personality. And, the good news? Giving up your collections is old school. Instead of scattering the things you've collected throughout the house, (like that great camera collection hidden in boxes or closed cabinets), put them on display, for you and others to enjoy. Include family photos and shop in your home for accessories. Spoiler alert: You're going to really get into this.

Stacks + Stacks: We're huge fans of the RoyGBiv color code system. Arrange and stack books laying them all one way as shown (think bottoms or backs meets shelf). Curating books by color creates a calming effect and especially on a freestanding industrial style shelf units.   

Color Precision: For the love of white (or any color), sticking to one, two or three colors create a neat, clean look and allows you to mix decorative objects of any color. We use white in the office A LOT,  but our Bigso Basix Collection comes in bunch of great colors and styles.

Design: Monika Hibbs Photo: Jamie Lauren Photography

Design: Monika Hibbs Photo: Jamie Lauren Photography

Add Whimsy: Some rooms just need a pop of color and fun. Don't have built-ins exactly where you want or need them?  Crate the shelves of your dreams with Floating shelves. They're versatile and allow you to appreciate some of your favorite things on a daily basis whereever you spend a lot of your time.

Pops of Color: A room with a focal point is always interesting. Knowing that you want your home to be more than "interesting", add a pop of your favorite color and a few meaningful pieces that might strike up conversation with your next dinner party guests.

Kid Shelfies: Yep, there's such a thing. Give your kids the tools and lay the foundation for neatness. You'll be surprised at their reaction and willingness to pitch in when they feel like it's a place to call their own (age permitting). Include toy storage, keepsakes, jewelry, craft projects and encourage them to add to their neat little space.

THE Kitchen: Shelfies can live in other rooms, including the kitchen and let's not forget the garage. Group like items and colors together on industrial strength shelving as shown here, and use bins and baskets for the items that need to be contained. FYI, some of this type shelving holds up to 800lbs. and can double as a pantry or what we like to call "the Costco cabinet", where all back up stock is stored.

xx/allie + deb