Pantry (Re) Organization

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Happy New Year, everyone!  First of all, let me apologize for my lengthy absence from blogging (especially to Amy and Terry, who covered for me while I was on hiatus).  And, while you read the title and know that this post is going to be about how I reorganized my pantry, let me show you one of the reasons I haven’t been online much:

golden retriever puppy

Gratuitous Picture of Our Darling New Family Member!

Yes, we have a new puppy, delivered on Christmas Eve!  Our golden retriever, Madison, died last Christmas (the night of the 25th, to be exact), and our house just hasn’t been the same without a dog.  I thought of a million reasons NOT to get a dog right now–at the top of the list is the fact that we’ll be moving this summer, and, oh yeah, our hundred-year-old hardwood floors.  But despite all of that, it just seemed that the timing was right.

So, forgive my digression, but I just had to explain what I’ve been doing instead of blogging (i.e., following Bodie around to make sure he’s not peeing or chewing where he’s not supposed to when he’s out of his crate).

Now, on to the pantry.  Don’t we all feel the urge to organize come January?  I think it’s because we spend time in almost every room of our houses, taking Christmas ornaments and decorations down and putting things back in order.  Although, usually after a month of Christmas preparations and celebrations, things aren’t really back in order, are they?  Plus, as I try to integrate all our lovely presents into our home, I realize how much junk stuff that we have.

Since we’re moving this summer, I’ll be going through virtually everything we own over the next few months, deciding whether it’s worth taking along or not.  That’s one benefit of being married to someone in the military–the frequent moves give you ample opportunity to pare down and streamline.

One area that’s been crying out for attention is my pantry.  I love our kitchen, and it’s the biggest one I’ve ever had, but the pantry is a bit lacking.  The reason is that the owners knocked out walls and combined three rooms to make the kitchen, and so there’s tons of cabinet space, but no walk-in closet-style pantry that newly constructed homes have.  I find that it’s hard to find places for my infrequently-used appliances, like my food processor and bread machine, and I don’t want it all out on my counter.   I’ve solved the problem in part by keeping most of my grocery stockpile downstairs in the cellar and minimizing what stays in the kitchen.  My kids may complain when they have to walk outside in the winter to go into the cellar to retrieve an ingredient for dinner, but it could be worse–they could be walking to school in the snow, uphill, both ways, like we did!

This is the home we have been lucky enough to enjoy these last few years. (Click HERE for the whole tour).

Christy's historic North Carolina house, colonial revival

And here is one that shows some of the kitchen:

white vintage farmhouse kitchen

The kitchen


So, here’s the before picture of the pantry.  I feel a little bit embarrassed about showing this to you, but don’t we all have trouble spots in our homes?  My bread machine was in use on the counter, so that’s why there’s open space on the left side–usually things are falling out when I open the doors!

First, I pulled everything out.  I know that some people can take several days to do a project like this, but I am not one of those people.  Having all that junk stuff out on my counters and floor is incentive to get things done!

Our posts contain affiliate links.  If you make a purchase after clicking on these links, we will earn a small commission, which helps to keep our content free.  You don’t pay a cent more than you would otherwise, since that would be tacky!

I decided to jazz the pantry up a bit by adding 1/2″ wide ribbon to the front of the shelves.  It was on sale at Hobby Lobby, and I just glue-gunned it on so that I can pull it off easily if and when I’m tired of it.

glue gun ribbon to shelf edges for a decorative effect

I also ordered chalkboard Contact paper online (I bought mine at Amazon –affiliate link):

It nearly killed me to have to wait for it to be delivered, and it felt like it took forever.  I’m an immediate-gratification kind of girl!  I put chalkboard contact paper inside the cupboard doors so that I could write menus, grocery lists, or just let the kids doodle.  I didn’t want to use chalkboard paint because I wanted to be able to remove everything when the times comes without a lot of fuss.  This worked out perfectly, and I had enough left over to put chalkboard labels on my big jars of flour and sugar on the counter and on the smaller jars I bought for the pantry.

I did take a page from some of the awesome pantry reorganizations I’ve seen online (like Shelley’s from House of Smiths–you must look at it–here), and decanted whatever I could into mason jars, baskets, glass bottles, and canisters.  The baskets are from HomeGoods–I already had them–and most of the glass decanters are from Wal-Mart and Marshall’s (any excuse to go to HomeGoods, TJ Maxx and Marshall’s–plus they’re usually less than the big-box stores).

Pantry redo after

After organizing but before doing the doors.

Note the obligatory row of San Pellegrino bottles that everyone has to have in their re-organized pantry, I guess because they’re so darned pretty.  I actually drink mine–love S. Pellegrino!

I had to take a close-up of my chip rack.  Like my wall chalkboard calendar, it is an object of humor (derision? envy?) from my friends, but I love it.  Fortunately, this pantry has adjustable shelves, so I was able to remove a shelf to make room for my chip rack.  I will confess that I have a second (larger) one down in the cellar, and I use whichever one fits best in whichever house we’re living in.  I think I bought them both on Ebay for $20 (with shipping), but you can find a similar one {here}.  I’ve seen them at garage sales and flea markets before, but remember, I’m all about immediate gratification, so I had to just buy the sizes that I needed when I saw them!

Use a chip rack to organize small bags of chips in your kitchen or pantry

Is this OCD or what?!


Here’s the finished product–hope you like it!  Oh, I forgot to mention the black and white polka dot paper.  That’s just scrapbook paper that I adhered using repositionable Photo Mount, so we can pull it down when we move.  The cabinets are all white with black granite countertops, so it might work for the next residents.


Pantry redo after

pantry redo after

pantry redo after

pantry redo after

pantry redo after

I hope you like it!

This pantry was featured on and the writer, Lisa Kaplan Gordon, did a tremendous job with the write-up and includes some details that I didn’t think to mention in the above post.  So feel free to click through and read about it HERE if you’re interested in more on my pantry!

P.S.  We’ve moved to a new house since, and I redid that pantry, too.  It’s MUCH bigger, but I had just as much fun.  Click {here} to read all about it!  Also, Amy’s gorgeous pantry redo is {here} and my newest pantry (in Southern Pines, NC) is {here}.

Thanks for stopping by!



  1. Wow, can you please come to my house and help me out? This is a great transformation.

    • Now, Miss Char, you don’t have to ask me twice to come and see your house, but I know for a fact that you don’t need any help from me!

      Thanks for coming by to see me!

  2. It looks great…and chalkboard contact paper? I’m in LOVE! I would love to find some! WOW! I’m going to google it now! Great job! ♥

  3. Your pantry is amazing. I love the ribbon you added and the chip rack is a great idea! Now you can come tackle mine. Thanks so much for sharing this at the party this week.

  4. Wow!!!! Your pantry looks super nice!!!

  5. You did an amazing job. Love the chalkboard.

  6. Love the transformation of your pantry. I need the chalkboard doors on mine, too! I like the touch of trim on the shelves. Great job!

  7. This is one of the nicest pantries I’ve ever seen! The chalkboard doors are too fun, and the chip rack is so cool! I envy your organization!

  8. I love it! I especially love the chalkboard contact paper, I’m getting ready to google it right now and find some for myself!

  9. Thanks for all the comments. If you’re so kind about my “afters,” then I’ll show you some more “befores”!

  10. Your pantry looks amazing! What a sweet addition to your family. I’ll bet you are enjoying that sweetie.


  11. Love, love, love it! Coming from Kims and so glad I did

  12. love this! Coming from kims and glad I did

  13. Everything looks so good – even the chip holder is really fun! The chalkboard contact paper was such a great idea, too. I may have to look into that and put some – somewhere around here! It just look so fun to have it! I love organizing and this is super great inspiration!

    Becky B.
    Organizing Made Fun

  14. Your pantry looks amazing! I absolutely love the chip rack. My boys would love that. I buy those individual bags of chips for their lunches. Right now, I keep them in a big basket. I am re-organizing my pantry right now and I am super excited about it. I will be posting about it on Monday.
    Thanks for linking up to my party!
    It’s nice to “meet” you. 🙂

  15. Marilyn Holeman says

    I came over from the closet linky party at Beneath My Heart–and I’ve looked at a lot of organizational posts the last few days. I believe this is the first one I’ve bookmarked. Outstanding! Thanks for sharing.

  16. How pretty! I know that pantry feels like a beauty queen…haha! I really like the chip idea – I buy those little chip bags for the lunch boxes and that would be a great way to see what I have got!

  17. This is absolutely beautiful!! It makes me want to rush and get to my pantry. I love when things are organized and pretty!

    Good Job!

  18. that looks great-i didn’t know about chalkboard contact paper. that’s very good to know! your chip rack-so professional! i love it all! including your new pup and curb appeal-i’ll have to check out some more of your home!

  19. I love and crave organization too. I think your pantry is awesome and I love the chalkboard on the doors too. I just did a chalkboard in a frame on my pantry door. Check out my site because I am having a giveaway you might like.

  20. I have seen many pantry makeovers but yours is something special. Love the black and white color scheme and the chalkboard.

  21. Wow! Great ideas! love the chips!

    Come link up at our party!

  22. What a great job. I love the chalkboard & scrapbook paper as well as the big basket for opened bags of chips. I have several small appliances and it’s always a challenge to put them where I can use them as well in a place where it’s not too cluttered.

    Elisabeth @ Treasuring the

  23. Anyone know if it’s possible to purchase a free standing pantry that is like this and where I can get it? We rent and we have an open wall and no pantry. This would be PERFECT!!

    • I don’t know if it would be exactly like this but I would start at IKEA, they have great storage options for very cheap. Good luck!

  24. This is AWESOME! I need to totally re-do all of our kitchen cabinets, and I’m so going to do this for our (teeny tiny) pantry. Thanks for sharing!

  25. Lovely pantry!!! Nice work. Organizing mine is on my to do list after the new year.

    Found you on pinterest.


    • Glad you stopped by, Jen. Organizing my pantry is on my list after the holidays, too. We’ve moved since I wrote this post and my new pantry is a horror! Check back because I might just blog about it if it turns out well. ~Christy

  26. Hi Christy.
    I love what you did with the pantry! I just found this through pinterest. I was wondering if you minded if I use the final picture I will link back to this post. Just let me know. Thanks.

  27. hi !
    What an amazing job ! You are such an inspiration for me. Can you tell me where did you get your pantry ? or where can I get some one like it ?
    Cary on like that, love your blog !

  28. Love the pantry and especially the chip organizer; where di you find???

    In much need,


    • Hi, Bri–
      I bought the chip rack on Ebay. I was at a yard sale with a good friend and she snagged a chip rack for $1 (she was just a LITTLE faster than me!), and that’s when I realized I had to have one. You should be able to find one, shipped, for under $20. Happy hunting!

  29. I love your pantry re-do! I featured it on my blog: Thanks for the great inspiration. 🙂

  30. Love this! Super cute with the ribbon & everything. I just wantted to say fir those of you wanting to know about chalkboard contact paper…I just bought chalkboard spray paint and sprayed it on regular contact paper. You can find both at walmart for about 10 bucks.

  31. Love the ribbon!

  32. I wanted to let you know that we are featuring your pantry on May 31 at Decor2Adlore{able}.


  33. God it looks good! I am like you in some ways as I need to see the finish product very quickly, I will try to do with mine, really will I have to I just have been very lazy but I need to start organising my entire life. : )
    Thank you so much for showing us your project it looks absolutely great.

  34. Catherine Jarvis says

    Thanks you for inspiring me, You are awesome !

    Cat 🙂

  35. The thing I love most of all is your perspective. You don’t let the thought of moving to a new place hold you back from making where you’re at now perfect for you. Good job!

  36. Amazing!! What a difference that make-over made! Mine is a bit of a disaster but now I’m inspired to take on the challenge of organizing it!

  37. Deirdre–thank so much for the feature on HouseLogic. I have no doubt that with all the great pantries and kitchens you get to see, that your own is going to look fabulous in no time!

  38. I love the idea of the chalkboard. Will use the idea when I repaint my cupboards. I think I will use the chalkboard in my camper so I know what I need to replace after each camping trip.
    Thank you for the idea!

  39. Love this! So easy to find everything. I’m a big fan of taking food out of it’s original container and replacing in glass. Use to put in plastic but I find that food sometimes takes on the taste of the plastic. However, it still doesn’t help my husband find anything when looking. He’ll say, now where is the ……….
    Love the chalkboard on the sides, too.
    Pinned and thanks for sharing.

  40. This is very interesting, You are a very professional blogger.
    I’ve joined your rss feed and sit up for searching
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  41. This is a great ideal pantry make over for my elderly parents. The calk-board menu and shopping list is great. I can plane out what they will eat for the week and make a shopping list for items they may need to pickup at their local store like, milk, bread,eggs, etc. According to what the need for the week. Thanks so much for sharing you ideal. It is exactly what I was looking fore. I am inspired !

  42. I am having a serious case of pantry envy right now. I love so much about this, from the organization of the items themselves to the chalkboard on the doors.

    I have just bought a new (old) house with a itty-bitty kitchen and no pantry to speak of. I hope to have a cabinet/cupboard pantry built in an empty corner before I move in and this post has inspired me. I know know that having a tiny pantry doesn’t always mean the end of organization.

    Thank you bunches!

    • That’s exactly right, London! It doesn’t have to be huge to be stylish and organized. I’d rather have a sweet old house and be a bit “challenged” for storage space any day. I know you’ll make your new space beautiful!

  43. Stephanie Jensen says

    Christy! what if i wanted to use a whiteboard instead of chalkboard? how would i go about doing that? looks great by the way! 🙂
    Stephanie Jensen

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