Pantry Lovin'

comments: 20

Cabinet2_2 When I was a child, friends' houses that I played in had things like pantries, butler's pantries (these are the absolute best), sleeping porches, and breezeways. My house didn't have any of these things, but I dreamt of them, and even now there is a charm and nostalgia about the words that comforts me, and suggests plenitude and shelter. The names for these spaces imply a sort of homey abundance that, say, the more-contemporary "great room" just doesn't, somehow. My Loloko stuff I ordered from Laura came a few days ago -- can you spot it in this, my newly reorganized kitchen cabinet? I love it all, though I have to say my favorite is the beret-wearing egg-y creature with the word "FRANCE" stamped across his abdomen (next to the baking soda). I think I have something on back-order, but I can't remember what. Who cares -- I know it will be cute! I reorganized my cabinet just for you, Laura! Really makes me feel like baking something, actually, when it's all neatened like this. I keep crushed peanuts in that teacup for my ice cream sundaes. Oh -- and the answer to yesterday's pink pleated thing? I think it's shelf edging, but it would be cute as cake-plate edging, too. It's actually vintage, and plastic, and printed with this teeny-tiny houndstooth pattern, and there is about 18 feet of it. Might redo this scallop eyelet edging with it, which has been up for six years and is getting a tad grimy. Is there even such a thing as contemporary shelf edging? I like the stuff.

Pantry2 Though our little house doesn't have an official pantry (let alone a butler's pantry, sleeping porch, or breezeway -- I wish), we do have a mud room, a very tiny mud room, which was created when the previous owner built the addition which was his painting studio. They sort of left the original back door and wall of the house and built a little rectangled room off of it, so we have, like, two back doors, and an interior window within a couple of feet of each other. They did kind of a half-assed job of everything. Every time I go to the football-field-of-hell that is Home Depot I see all the things -- tiles, handles, flooring -- we have in our house, picked out by the previous owner (who was leasing the place out as a rental), and it is the cheapest possible crap, installed in every crooked, half-assed way you can think of. It drives me crazy that everything he installed is crooked, including the bathroom sink. We put a big baker's shelf thing in the mud room a couple of years ago and turned it into the pantry, which is why I have (somewhat embarrassingly) room to display cute critters and cupcake papers in my kitchen cabinet (above). I don't want you to think it will really stay looking like that for long or anything. That's why I took a picture of it, because it will only look that way for the length of time the shutter is open. All of the unopened food is in the mud room/pantry. Through the interior window (from inside the bathroom) I took this pic of my apron curtain for Amy K.

Pantry8 The room is so skinny it's impossible to get in there, really, but I love having it. Julie and Julia were making me feel a little bit bad about letting it turn into kind of a jumbled mess in the last few months -- I think I might look for one of those lists of things that you should always have in there, too. I'm sure Martha must have a list like that somewhere? Yesterday morning I went back and re-stacked all those cans and boxes. It's very satisfying work. I was shocked to see how much stuff we really had. Why do I, every time I have to make dinner, think we don't have anything to make? Clearly we have four bags of brown sugar and three bags of powdered sugar!!! What the . . . ? I also found Raviolios and Spaghettios in there. I swear those are not mine!!! The tapioca pudding is mine. Yum.


Wow! You have a gorgeous home! And I mean beautiful! Such great style. I have such a hard time figuring out where to hang things and how to sort things but looking at your blog makes me want to try again! How did you mount the trim on those cabinets? Love, love that!

From your lovely photos, I imagine your house looking like something out of a fairy tale. All so neatly organised and feminine.

Truly beautiful. Thanks for sharing.

love it, love your kitchen so cute, I must say that my favorite from loloko is also the egg France, just makes me smile :)

Even your cupboards are cute! I love that you put so much thought into the details. When I have some bigger cabinets, I'm definitely going to whip up some shelf trim!

Yay! I got the question right!
10 points for me...tee hee.
I have the same etagere in my teeny kitchen. It's served me well in two apartments so far.
Yours, however, is much more photogenic than mine.

Oh I'll take the Spaghetti-o''s my secret shame...LOVE the apron curtain. I think I may try that right now!

My guess is that Andy probably threw those cans of silly food into the cart the last time we went to SafeWay together! What do you think? Your photos are wonderful.....and Andy will be on the ground, safe and sound, in 2 minutes- 23 minutes early!

Your photos are so beautiful. You are a constant inspiration!

I randomly found you, but you are just the cutest...a house straight out of the pages of Mary Englebreit!

Love it...will be back!

I, too, love those oddly named rooms - even a mud room. My house growing up didn't have any thing "fancy." And our current house (a rental) must have had the same owners as yours - every bit of work that he did is screwed up in some crazy way! And all very crappy. We like the layout of our house, but couldn't imagine the renovation needed to put it up to *our* par.

I love your posts; so bright and fun. Thank you!

oh-I was excited for that photo before I even saw my name-of course. it is lovely!! and thank you so much for last night-the mints! good god, sure didn't need them;)

oh my god. your house is so cute that when you open the cupboards...there's smiling mushrooms and eggs in there! too much.

are those little guys in the cupboard to stay? or just for the moment.
I love to do that, have a little treat when you open the cupboard or a closet - a moment of fun.

My favorite are the little chairs with critters in them. I, too, love shelf edging and bought some vinyl lace with sticky back at WalMart.
I haven't actually put it on a shelf but it made great gathered edging for a vinyl tote and I have printed with it too. I put a pic here for you to see because it just may be the stuff you desire.

I was so excited to stumble across your blog and this post today! I too never had anything approaching a pantry growing up, and the very idea brought to mind prosperity, comfort and... endless cupcakes! Recently I've moved to Hong Kong where apartment sizes are tiny - the last place I'd expect to find a pantry. But believe it or not, I now have one! A small coffin-shaped room behind my kitchen was originally a maid's room (so cruel!) and will soon by my pantry. A happy ending to my pantry fairytale ;-).

We did have a pantry growing up, it was pretty tiny, there was an equally tiny porch on top of it on the second floor. Martha Stewart does indeed have a list of pantry staples, it's rather intimidating, I would feel triumphant if I had a fourth of the ingredients on hand at any given time.

(opens as a pdf)

I love the scalloped edging so much! If it was me I'd just clean and paint over it. :)

I laughed when you said that everything is installed crooked because it sort of reminds me of the apartment we live in now. The kitchen and bathroom sinks are ass-backwards. Normally if you turn the faucet handle left it is hot, and to the right it is cold, right? No...not here. Left is cold and right is hot. But not in the bathtub or the other sink. And the light switch in the kitchen, up is off and down is on. Hmmmmmmmm?

I know this is a week old, but I can't help but comment. I can *so* relate to the previous owner doing everything in a shoddy way.

We are renters, but at $2100/month, you would expect our rental to be gold-plated. No, the owner "remodeled" on his own and our outlets are upside down. Every single outlet is upside down because he put them in himself and didn't know that the grounding plug goes on the bottom. It makes me laugh every single time I plug something in!

FWIW, my home isn't nearly as pretty as yours, that's for sure! I'd like it to be, my daughters would like that, too, but for right now it just isn't the season. I have six daughters, age 3 months to 10 years and we homeschool so we have busy days together. It is very clean and organized but plain, not pretty. No artwork, no mirrors. One couch. One end table. One dining table. Seven chairs plus a high chair.

You are inspiring me to put for prettiness where I can and enjoy the little dashes of pink I can pop in the cupboards or wherever. I keep being inspired!
thank you!

This is a charming post, so lovely to hear people talk about a pantry so lovingly and longingly! I share your passion, that's for sure - This is an old post, but I want to share my website with people who can't get enough of pantries!

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About Alicia Paulson


My name is Alicia Paulson
and I love to make things. I live with my husband and daughter in Portland, Oregon, and design sewing, embroidery, knitting, and crochet patterns. See more about me at