In last Wednesday’s post you saw the door to our pantry.
Despite the signage, that door doesn’t really lead to any public phones. I got that sign at Junk Bonanza many years ago and it’s been on the pantry door ever since.
It also doesn’t really lead to a pantry. Instead it opens onto the stairs to our basement. But there is a 12″ or so ledge around two sides that we’ve taken advantage of by adding some built in shelving and calling it a pantry.
Once again, let’s start at the beginning though.
Oh boy, right?
Yep, this is where we started. How embarrassing is that?
At that point we had a solid door. It could be closed so that no one could see this awful mess. Closing the door is also a good thing because in the winter it blocks the radiator when open.
But as you can see, we have a window in this space. And closing the door resulted in shutting out the light it allowed in as well. So we decided we needed a door with a window to allow the light into the kitchen, and that also meant we needed to make this space presentable. It would no longer be out of sight, out of mind.
I found the door on Craigslist. It had to be cut down just a tad to fit our opening.
We then embarked on the big clean-out.
It was still looking pretty shabby once everything was removed. That’s when we hired our friend Ben (Ben also did all of our sheet rock/archway building work in the kitchen … oh, and he has also painted our exterior as well, and he removed all of our popcorn ceilings on the main floor) to skim coat the walls and ceiling.
Once they were skim coated, I repainted.
It was already looking so much better.
Next I shopped around for more attractive shelving for the space. I was limited to the 12″ depth of the ledge though and I just couldn’t find what I wanted anywhere. Enter our favorite handyman/neighbor Ken. He custom built shelving to fit the space and to suit our needs.
Now, here’s the thing. As you move into the pantry, you’re also going down the stairs into the basement. So we can’t actually reach the things on the top of the shelving unit under the window, or the things on the top right shelf or very top of the taller units. They are just for looks.
Well, let’s be honest, there might be a few more items in here that are really ‘just for looks’. This is the perfect spot for displaying a few of my non-collections like the bluebird china, vintage scales and flour sifters …
and don’t forget the vintage tablecloths.
Uh, that’s a lot of non-collections, right? I guess denial is not just a river in Egypt.
But I also like to use awesome vintage (or maybe not so vintage) containers to store mundane, but more practical things. The taller breadbox holds the cat food, the smaller breadbox holds Keurig coffee pods. The other vintage breadboxes hold Kleenex. The enamelware bucket holds cleaning rags.
Vintage locker baskets hold paper towels and toilet paper.
The wall opposite the shelves, which I practically have to do contortions to photograph, is painted in black chalkboard paint and contains a message that I try to live by.
That wall also houses the light fixture. I swapped out the plain glass shade that was on it originally for this fabulous vintage one that I found at a garage sale.
The pantry was the absolute last space in our house that we tackled. We’d redone every other room, and some twice, but we didn’t get to this one until we’d been in our house nearly 20 years. It was so easy to just shut the door and ignore it. But now that it’s pretty, it’s one of my favorite spots. Especially in the evening when the sun starts going down and it floods the pantry, and now the kitchen, with light.
Do you have a space like this in your house? You know, that one area that you’ve been neglecting for a really long time? Please tell me that we’re not the only ones who took 20 years to get something done!