Monday, January 21, 2013

Love Affair with Pantries

I've had a love affair with pantries since I was a little girl. My next door neighbor had this whole closet right off the kitchen where she kept all her food.  This looks very much like the pantry she had in her early 1950's home. It's the type I want the most if I had a choice.  How convenient to just enter a room and be able to see everything you have at a glance!  I think all kitchens should have this included in the house plans.

My Grandma's kitchen had several mysterious rooms.  There was a mud room with a deep sink and updated with a washer and dryer. A screened-in porch where I'm sure many a pea was shelled and maybe used as a sleeping porch (the room was later closed in as an extra guest room).  Grandma had a lovely butler's pantry that she kept a giant, ancient freezer chest.  The room had windows in the alcove area and a built-in china cabinet.  But the most mysterious and unusual room was a long narrow closet that was her pantry.  From top to bottom the closet was lined with sturdy shelves.  It reminded me of the one the chauffer took a can of salmon out of in "Driving Miss Daisy." 

In The First Four Years, by Laura Ingall Wilder, Almonzo built the most amazing pantry in their new home.  The description includes flour bins!  I love to study the illustration shown in the book. 

Before Pinterest, I kept magazine clippings such as these, organized in a notebook, as inspiration for my ultimate pantry (I apologize for the picture's graininess.)  I've seen the first couple of pictures pinned on Pinterest that I clipped from a Martha Stewart Magazine years ago. 

From Martha Stewart Magazine
This is a great organizational idea for keeping up with and rotating food storage and supplies.  Another great idea comes from Ensign magazine for using an easy pocket chart system where even children (and husbands) can help.
From Martha Stewart Magazine
This is a great idea for those of us who must keep our storage in the garage or basement.

Here is an excellent way to use space inside the walls.  I love it cause you can see what you have, and yet it's still kinda hidden and there's the old-fashioned feel of a screen door.  Of course I don't find screen doors like this practical anymore on my front and back doors and opt for more energy-efficient storm doors, so getting to use a screen door somewhere in the house is nostalgic and you can often find them discarded and needing just a little TLC.

This pantry is what most new homes provide and is the simplest and least expensive for those of us who have an extra traditional closet to use.  I've seen a lot of good ideas on Pinterest for organizing pantry items using this storage system.

from Southern Living Magazine
I include this picture just because it is so inspiring.  Maybe one day I'll get my act together and have such an array of home-canned items.  Right now I'm lucky if I get jam or jelly done each year.


Emmy said...

There is something wonderful about a pantry--I really wish I had one.

Heather A. said...

I'm really surprised that pantries were eliminated in modern homes but I'm glad to see they are making a come-back!


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