Please Pantry, Stay This Way
I'm sure we aren't the only people struggling to keep the pantry organized and free of the dreaded expired bottle of brown ketchup. This time around I hope to maintain the hard-work you see below. Here's how I turned this:
I draw so much inspiration from sites/IG accounts like the Home Edit and Life in Jeneral. They are probably my 2 favorite but there are so many others that share their transformations and work. So as a result of this influence there are a couple of steps I will never skip when organizing any space. Likely the most important is to TAKE EVERYTHING OUT! I can't stress how much taking everything out has helped me really see all the crap I own and determine what stays and what goes.
Unlike organizing a closet where you have to determine if you still like a dress or if you'll ever fit into whatever teenage size you still own, a pantry has some finite principles. Throw out the expired stuff. Even if it has the questionable BEST BY marker, use your judgement, but if it says 2018 I think it's a strong no. Once you've tossed the expired items and bagged items that you won't use, but aren't expired, for donation it is time to get to the sorting.
I sort by how I cook/use. Although I love how some organizing accounts sort you really have to sort based on how you live. My sort included beverages, breakfast, dinner, snacks and baking to name a few. I also added drawers for cake decorating, food storage and party supplies. Again, do what works for you but if there is one thing that The Home Edit has drilled in me is that we ALL must have back-stock which is basically whatever you have extra of. So if you have 5 bottles of ketchup you will have 4 in your back-stock.
I attempted to plan out my layout but it worked better for me to try different configurations until I found what worked best. I used a combination of items including: baskets, lazy susans, tiered can/spice rack, clear organizing containers and drawer storage. I sourced most of these items from Christmas Tree Shops/Bed Bath & Beyond, Walmart, Target and HomeGoods.
If there was one piece of advice I could give if you are thinking about tackling your panty it would be to design it in a way that is attainable. Make sure there is room for growth and be prepared to take your time in order to save time, free from rummaging in the future.