Know what you can do with a dozen clear dollar-store butter dishes, and five feet of Velcro?
I’m guessing if you read my post title you already know the answer is organize your pantry. Allow me to show you how.
First, some pantry background—I live in a tiny space, and am a freak about utilizing every inch of it. Really—every inch. I have a cozy but functional kitchen, and that’s where I need the most help. I’m fortunate enough to have a pantry, and have already added extra shelving where there wasn’t any. If you take a look at the photos, you can see where I added a small shelf above the main shelves because there was so much wasted space. I don’t like seeing airspace. I want something everywhere there’s air.
I also added one of those fantastic, coated wire racks to the pantry door. It holds a lot of groceries, and I highly recommend trying them if you’re short on cabinet space. Also, if you don’t have a pantry at all, but have an open space next to your fridge, see how you can make a rolling pantry by clicking here.
So after I gave myself a big “Atta Girl!” for the added shelf idea and the wire rack addition, I realized I still had too much…well…air. So after living with the extra airspace for four years, I finally made it my mission last week to scour every Dollar Store in Bloomington, Illinois to find something to get rid of it. After only my second Dollar Store—The Dollar Tree to be exact—I found exactly what I was looking for.
You know that feeling you get when you’ve been shopping tirelessly for a new home, and you walk into one and know immediately that it’s the one? That’s the exact feeling I had when I saw my lovely, dollar-a-piece butter dishes. I just knew. I snatched up every single one. A dozen total. I’m sure the cashier was wondering what a person could do with a dozen butter dishes. She was probably also wondering about the condition of my arteries. That’s a lot of butter.
So here’s a picture of the space that has frustrated me for so long. You see it. The space between the shelves and the door jamb. That’s six-inches of prime real estate just begging to be utilized.
If you scroll back, and look at my coated rack on my pantry door, you’ll notice the top two compartments are filled with spices. Those spices, paired up with my incredible butter dish lids are about to take care of my problem. Relocating my spices would then free up the racks for other pantry items. Be still my heart.
So learn from my mistakes on this one. I originally was going to drill holes in the butter dishes, and screw them into the wall, but I knew I’d probably end up breaking some of them between the drilling, and screwing them into the wall. I ultimately decided to use Velcro. Gotta love Velcro.
The next picture is what not to buy. I thought the little pre-shaped coin Velcro would be great. Peel those babies, stick ’em on and no more air! Wrong. I put them up, put my spices in them and a few minutes later, I experienced the domino effect as they fell off the wall, each knocking off the one below it. Made me wanna cuss a little bit. Ok. I did cuss a little bit. Then I cussed a lotta bit as I peeled 24 stickers off my wall, and 24 stickers off my gorgeous butter dishes. The Velcro coins aren’t strong enough.
Here’s a picture of what actually worked. That’s what I’m talkin’ about! Heavy duty, hold-on-to-your-panties Velcro.
I used about five inches of self-sticking Velcro on the back of each butter dish lid, and mounted equal strips on the wall where I wanted them to hang, and wha-la! Finally, no more air!
Another reason I love the butter dish idea is because they’re see-through. Even so, you’ll notice in my after photos I labeled the spices on both the front of the lids, and on the tops of the lids so they’re still easier to see. Yes, I do alphabetize my spices. And yes, perhaps I have a touch of OCD going on. Check out my before and after photos.
In addition to spices, those little envelopes of taco seasoning, dry soup mix, Kool-aid and such work well in these as do the tin boxes of spices.
I know this project isn’t exactly deserving of the Nobel Peace Prize, but I still get a certain amount of satisfaction knowing I’ve done the most that I can with the space I have. Now what can I do with twelve of these…
This post was written by Tracy Evans who is a Certified Home Stager, Certified Redesigner and Journeyman Painter servicing the Central Illinois area. Feel free to visit her website at www.HelpAtHomeStaging.com to view her portfolio for more before and after pictures of her projects. And if you enjoy gardening, you may want to visit her gardening blog at MyUrbanGardenOasis.