Ok. I feel like I need to make excuses and be defensive about my pantry for a minute.
First of all, yes, the picture above is my pantry. This is what my pantry looked like the day after my daughter’s Rainbow Party just a few weeks ago.
I’m not proud.
I have an awesome pantry, which was a requirement when we built our house five years ago. In fact, we even made it bigger than the plans originally called for because it wasn’t quite big enough for me. Truth be told, I still wish it was a bit bigger.
So, when we built the house, we just added evenly spaced, immovable white hardwood shelving. It looked nice and clean, and given the pantry from our previous house, this was like the Taj Mahal of pantries and I couldn’t imagine ever improving upon it. Then, five years happened. Two little kids happened. Birthday parties, entertaining, and Lemon Sugar happened.
Now, generally speaking my pantry was NEVER really as bad as the photos I took for this “before” session. Like I said, this was the aftermath of a pretty big birthday party and a pretty busy month of baking and entertaining.
But still. Copious amounts of shame here folks.
It gets worse.
I’m literally cringing at the thought of putting this out there for ya’ll to see.
Clearly, it was time to make some changes and get things organized again, so I began researching. I wanted to find the perfect pantry organization system that would meet my needs, organize my Lemon Sugar life and my daily life, and for Pete’s sake, clean up this mess.
I looked everywhere, and I weighed the pros and cons of every system out there, including a DIY renovation. Once I stumbled upon Organized Living’s Freedom Rail system, I was in love. A couple of phone calls later, I had a design that met my every need, looked great and was so easy to install that we did it ourselves in just a couple of hours.
It took longer to take everything out of my pantry than it did to install the new system. Seriously, this is an awesome product.
As you can see by gawking at my pantry-disaster (seriously, I feel like I’m naked here…) I didn’t really have a system at all. I tried to keep spices together, pasta together, baking ingredients together, etc., but it didn’t really have that “a-place-for-everything-and-everything-in-its-place” feeling, which is really what I need in my life to keep me sane.
That’s the great thing about Freedom Rail by Organized Living. They literally have a component for every possible organizational scenario. The shelving is adjustable, they have bins, pull-out drawers, adjustable baskets, stand-alone wire baskets…the list goes on.
I really can’t wait to show you my new spice rack. It’s fantastic.
Before we could get started, we obviously had to remove every single thing from the pantry, which was a great opportunity to get rid of ingredients that we no longer use (we’ve gone mostly organic over the last year or so) and provided a chance to re-think how I’ve been doing things and organizing my kitchen life.
Then, we began demolition, which was relatively painless. It was a bit noisy, but the old shelving came down pretty easily. A bit of floor repair and a couple of drywall patches later, we were ready for a fresh coat of paint (more about that later) and it was time to get the new shelving up on the walls.
To celebrate and share the love a little bit, Organized Living has offered to provide a $100 gift card for one lucky Lemon Sugar reader. They are seriously awesome people over there, and $100 would be a great start to a new pantry system, garage system (plus they have 25% off this month!) and I promise, cross-my-heart that you’ll love their products. Check out their inspiration gallery and product line – they can literally organize any room in your house, from mudroom to laundryroom to pantry to closets.
Be sure you take some time to enter the giveaway below, and if you have a minute, watch the video below to learn more about what Organized Living can do for you. Don’t forget check back next Monday (6.24.13) to see the after pictures and to see who won the gift card!
A huge thank you to Organized Living for their tremendous support of Lemon Sugar, their amazing products and their help along the way. Good luck!