Spring Cleaning The Pantry Pile-up To Create Usable Space

Pantry Pile-Up
Photo Courtesy: Maeve's Method

April 23, 2016 (Gephardt Daily) — It’s like a scene from a family sitcom… you open the pantry door to see everything from tote bags to drills to cordless vacuums, medicines, and maybe even some food, come tumbling out.

It’s definitely time to clear the closet pile-up and make room for the items a pantry is designed to hold.

Maeve Richmond, founder and coach of Maeve’s Method, calls a filled to the brim, out of control pantry, a “catch all.” Richmond says that means, “the room is working way too hard and needs a clear intention for its use.”

If your pantry is a “catch all,” the first step in clearing the chaos according to Richmond is to take everything out and organize it according to the mantra, “Like Things Live Together.”

Next step is to dedicate shelves for certain items based on your family’s needs. Keep in mind the space is yours and needs to function for you and not someone with different priorities for the pantry area.

Many people use the pantry for a convenience room where lunch items, snacks, cereals, breads etc. are stored in an easy to access layout. Richmond says trays, baskets, and plastic containers are an easy and an efficient way to store items like this in a pantry.

The baskets, clear containers, and trays create pantry “zones” according to Richmond and make it harder to pile items that don’t belong together in the same area.

And for those who prefer a checklist before they dive into a clutter clearing project, here’s one from those who have followed Maeve’s Method:

Categorize! Place items that go together, together! They actually enjoy being around each other.

Use less boxes! The fewer boxes, the less cluttered and bulky the space looks. It is  easier to see what you have in clear containers or on trays and in open baskets.

Make it functional.  Do what makes sense for you. Create a system that makes your life and your family’s lives a little easier. Make pantry items accessible.

Now that the pantry pile-up is cleared and the closet is accessible, the door can be opened to a handy convenience center the whole family will enjoy using.

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