6210 Nesbitt Road, Madison, WI 53719

Spring Organizing the Kitchen and Pantry

The first thing that pops into my head when I hear the phrase “spring cleaning” is of my mom wearing long, yellow rubber gloves, patiently wiping down the windows, the baseboards, and the floor. Maybe airing out the house as the weather finally warms up enough to open the windows again to let in fresh air and light. I think of dusting off every shelf, every cabinet, wiping down every surface to make it shiny and new.

Except…cleaning isn’t exactly my thing. While some people take pride in making things shiny and new I’m happy to pay a cleaning service to come in occasionally and clean up the worst of the grime.

But organization? Now that’s my jam. Maybe we could rebrand spring cleaning and call it spring organizing instead. I’m a rockstar at creating piles of things to “donate”, “keep”, and “save” and take immense pride in the resulting space that appears after removing piles of clutter. That’s exactly what I was made for.

It also happens to be what our showroom coordinator, Tara Buedding, has been called to as well. So much that she has her own business as The Happy Home Organizer. Tara shared with me some of the biggest challenges her clients face, some organizational products and tips, and ways to stick with a system that works for you!

Challenges

One of the biggest obstacles Tara finds in her clients’ homes is simply having too much stuff. Overflowing cabinets, pantries, and drawers aren’t helpful to anyone. She finds that many of the people she works with own multiples of things, such as can openers or several jars of peanut butter. Paring back to what your household actually needs is one of the simplest ways to clear clutter quickly. Another challenge is a lack of proper storage and function: when a single cabinet is filled with everything from plates to spices to utensils, it’s hard to find anything.

Steps to Tackling the Pantry

  1. Tara’s first step to organizing any space is to take out everything. Take absolutely everything out of your pantry. It will look like your kitchen has exploded all over the dining table and island, but we promise it gets better!
  2. The next step is to clean the space (yes, this is my least favorite part!). Wipe down every shelf and sweep the floor if necessary.
  3. Return to all that stuff you pulled from the pantry and sort it into groups. Baking supplies in one group, breakfast cereals in another, serving platters in their own group, etc.
  4. Go through each pile and throw away or recycle any expired/stale items. Create a donate pile for any kitchen items you have multiples of or just don’t use.
  5. Put your items back in the pantry. It helps to create “zones” as you do this so in the future it’s easier to find things. For example, a baking zone for flours, sugars, and chocolate chips. A breakfast zone for cereal, oatmeal, pancake mix, and coffee. And another for kids’ snacks. Plastic baskets with handles are great for corralling items into their own zones – they can be taken out from the pantry easily and wiped out when needed.

Sticking With A System

The biggest words of wisdom from Tara might be to practice, practice, practice! Once an organizational system is in place in your home, it takes time to make it a habit. It’s hard to train our brains in any new habit because first we have to break the old ones. This includes the way we function in our own homes – especially when we throw children or roommates into the mix! Yet sticking with an efficient system will save both time and money in the end. Time because you will no longer be searching for things in several different cabinets, and money because you won’t be replacing items just because you can’t find them.

Product Recommendations

  • Pull-out shelves for everything from pots and pans to food – no more dark cabinet corners!
  • Drawer dividers for cutlery and utensils – one of the simplest ways to organize and reclaim drawer space.
  • Spice storage – so many options from stair-step organizers to drawer pull-outs – there’s something for every kitchen.
  • Baskets, bins, and canisters – Tara recommends The Container Store.

It’s a commitment to tackle any space in your home to make it fit and flow better for your own family. Yet the benefits are so worth it, and while we focused on the kitchen and pantry here, Tara’s steps for organization apply to any room! Spring is the perfect time to go through closets, kitchen items, or bathroom linens. Even if it doesn’t excite you as much as it does me or Tara, at least in April you can do it with sunshine and a breeze wafting through an open window.

Have a kitchen or pantry that could be better organized or even use an entire remodel? Contact Bella Domicile to meet with one of our talented designers today! Call (608) 271-8241 or fill out an appointment request form here. And contact our showroom coordinator Tara Buedding for help organizing any space in your home! You can find her over on Facebook as The Happy Home Organizer.

 

Spring Organizing the Kitchen and Pantry

The first thing that pops into my head when I hear the phrase “spring cleaning” is of my mom wearing long, yellow rubber gloves, patiently wiping down the windows, the baseboards, and the floor. Maybe airing out the house as the weather finally warms up enough to open the windows again to let in fresh air and light. I think of dusting off every shelf, every cabinet, wiping down every surface to make it shiny and new.

Except…cleaning isn’t exactly my thing. While some people take pride in making things shiny and new I’m happy to pay a cleaning service to come in occasionally and clean up the worst of the grime.

But organization? Now that’s my jam. Maybe we could rebrand spring cleaning and call it spring organizing instead. I’m a rockstar at creating piles of things to “donate”, “keep”, and “save” and take immense pride in the resulting space that appears after removing piles of clutter. That’s exactly what I was made for.

It also happens to be what our showroom coordinator, Tara Buedding, has been called to as well. So much that she has her own business as The Happy Home Organizer. Tara shared with me some of the biggest challenges her clients face, some organizational products and tips, and ways to stick with a system that works for you!

Challenges

One of the biggest obstacles Tara finds in her clients’ homes is simply having too much stuff. Overflowing cabinets, pantries, and drawers aren’t helpful to anyone. She finds that many of the people she works with own multiples of things, such as can openers or several jars of peanut butter. Paring back to what your household actually needs is one of the simplest ways to clear clutter quickly. Another challenge is a lack of proper storage and function: when a single cabinet is filled with everything from plates to spices to utensils, it’s hard to find anything.

Steps to Tackling the Pantry

  1. Tara’s first step to organizing any space is to take out everything. Take absolutely everything out of your pantry. It will look like your kitchen has exploded all over the dining table and island, but we promise it gets better!
  2. The next step is to clean the space (yes, this is my least favorite part!). Wipe down every shelf and sweep the floor if necessary.
  3. Return to all that stuff you pulled from the pantry and sort it into groups. Baking supplies in one group, breakfast cereals in another, serving platters in their own group, etc.
  4. Go through each pile and throw away or recycle any expired/stale items. Create a donate pile for any kitchen items you have multiples of or just don’t use.
  5. Put your items back in the pantry. It helps to create “zones” as you do this so in the future it’s easier to find things. For example, a baking zone for flours, sugars, and chocolate chips. A breakfast zone for cereal, oatmeal, pancake mix, and coffee. And another for kids’ snacks. Plastic baskets with handles are great for corralling items into their own zones – they can be taken out from the pantry easily and wiped out when needed.

Sticking With A System

The biggest words of wisdom from Tara might be to practice, practice, practice! Once an organizational system is in place in your home, it takes time to make it a habit. It’s hard to train our brains in any new habit because first we have to break the old ones. This includes the way we function in our own homes – especially when we throw children or roommates into the mix! Yet sticking with an efficient system will save both time and money in the end. Time because you will no longer be searching for things in several different cabinets, and money because you won’t be replacing items just because you can’t find them.

Product Recommendations

It’s a commitment to tackle any space in your home to make it fit and flow better for your own family. Yet the benefits are so worth it, and while we focused on the kitchen and pantry here, Tara’s steps for organization apply to any room! Spring is the perfect time to go through closets, kitchen items, or bathroom linens. Even if it doesn’t excite you as much as it does me or Tara, at least in April you can do it with sunshine and a breeze wafting through an open window.

Have a kitchen or pantry that could be better organized or even use an entire remodel? Contact Bella Domicile to meet with one of our talented designers today! Call (608) 271-8241 or fill out an appointment request form here. And contact our showroom coordinator Tara Buedding for help organizing any space in your home! You can find her over on Facebook as The Happy Home Organizer.