This is a common clutter spot for all my clients – the dreaded pantry! I am amazed at how out of date some things are that I find in the pantry, but this happens because items are not easily accessible.
Real Simple magazine has many decluttering and organising articles and this one had some handy tips:
- Assess the contents. Start by taking stock of what is in the pantry. Past its prime? Throw it out. Never going to use it? Donate it.
- Store foods systematically. Containers of flour, bottles of cooking oil, and common canned foods should be at waist level for easiest access. Less frequently used canned goods should be stacked on lower shelves with labels facing you. Lightweight items, such as cereals and pasta, are perfect for high shelves.
- Choose the right containers. Make sure you can see what is in them. Opaque tupperware or baskets are great for this reason. Glass is great for keeping in freshness. Keep all smaller items contained and easy to access.
- Leverage leftover space. Consider delegating an area at the rear of the pantry to little-used pans and appliances.
- Keep spices in carefully labeled, airtight jars. Place them in a box on a shelf or in a spice rack on the pantry wall or door.
- If you keep cleaning products in the pantry rather than under the sink, store them in bins, buckets, or baskets. Install hooks on every available inch of the pantry door to hold brooms, mops, aprons, etc.
- If retrieving items from high shelves is difficult, invest in a collapsible step stool that you can fold and hang on the back of the door or tuck into a recessed space.