A kitchen can be beautiful, but it’s not really functional until it’s organized. Last week, we ambushed the Fullmers and organized the guts out of their pantry and cabinets and it might have been my favorite day. I just love organizing and today I wanted to share a few tips on how we got the insides of their cabinets to look just as good as the outside–and we even took a video of what’s inside all of their cabinets since I know you all go wild for those.
Organizing is first and foremost about convenience. It should be convenient to find things, fast to grab every day items, and easy to put them away so it stays organized. After emptying every cabinet and drawer, I asked her many questions about “how often do you use this?” “Do you want your kids to be able to reach this?” And even “What do you top your toast with?” so that I could group all the like things together in the same place.
The tall section of cabinets next to the fridge we selected as the main pantry cabinet filled with stuff they used every day. It’s the most convenient to get to while in the kitchen, it has two countertops nearby and plenty of room for all of their every day items. The main problem I noticed when I first opened it, before we organized, is there were products and bags layered in front of each other and no one thing had a designated spot.
Organizing is about giving every item a designated spot. Lowe’s has so many powerful, but simple and useful tools to get this job done that we rounded up and linked below. Baskets, bins, jars, turn tables, layering stands! Here’s how we utilized them:
Baskets (with a handle to grab!) are great for top shelves where you can still group things together, but take the whole basket down to grab multiple things if needed. We reserved the top shelf baskets for boxed items–cake mixes, mac and cheese, pasta. And a smaller, narrow bin in the center to hold spice packets up right! It’s so easy to take it down, grab what you need and put it back in place instead of shuffling through a drawer of packets trying to find what you need.
Pasta, rice, and protein pancake powder all got decanted in these amazing jars (love the twist lid!) and put on a large turn table (my favorite organizing tool). Lowe’s carries large and small turntables and I love using both! We also grouped all of the different types of oil on a small turntable.
If you do have to layer things in front of one another, like we did on the cans and sauces shelf, make sure there is enough breathing room vertically to easily grab something without disturbing anything else. On this specific shelf, everything is still seen because we put the cans that they used on a tiered stand and put the other items in front, grouped on small turntables.
The last shelf in this portion is reachable by the kids–cereal!
Below, we stashed spices, a snack drawer and what every kitchen needs–a chip drawer.
Group smaller bags together in wire baskets and don’t forget to put the chip clips in this drawer for easy use!
To the left of this section of pantry, there’s a smaller stack of cabinetry. The top cabinet is not as easy to get to, so we put lesser used vases and pitchers there. And below is the sandwich/toast making station. We made sure to run a plug to this cabinet before the renovation started to create an appliance garage of sorts, but it morphed into this very functional station that makes the whole family happy.
We outfitted the family with this slick 4 slice toaster and above put all the toppings for sandwiches and toast and a wire basket of all their bread/tortillas next to it. I think this is where organizing really shines. Naturally people put bread, peanut butter, etc. with all the other pantry items, but grouping them together on a small turn table where you will use them most is what organizing is all about! The finishing touch was mounting this simple paper towel holder on the cabinet door that fits perfectly above the space above the bread basket.
Above the fridge, we added these shelf dividers and another large turntable to help this cabinet pull double duty storing trays and lesser used muffin tins and sheet pans and on the turn table all the protein powder and supplements Kelsi and Caleb use daily and even made room for the blender bottle.
You can see how we maximized all of the other cabinets in the cabinet tour below!
Don’t forget other hard working areas in the kitchen like under the sink, where we put this adorable cleaning caddy to hold dish-washing supplies…
…and even mounted a pull out towel drying rack! It’s amazing!
The last tip I wanted to mention is, mom was right all along. These layering stands are so handy for optimizing cabinet space when storing a variety of plates and bowls. Each thing is easy to get to, easy to put away–that’s what organizing is all about!
Here are all of our favorite kitchen organizing power houses from the Fullmer kitchen (a simple broom clip #4 might change your life) and a few extras that might help you maximize your cabinetry!
1. Rubbermaid Paper Towel Holder: $6
2. Home Basics Food Storage Container: $21
3. Spectrum Plastic Bag Holder: $8
4. Blue Hawk General Purpose Storage Clips: $4
5. OXO Round Serving Caddy: $17
6. Style Selections Plastic Insert Drawer Organizer: $18
7. OXO Lazy Susan: $13
8. Style Selections Plate Rack: $10
9. Home Basics Food Storage Container: $17
10. Style Selections Drawer Organizer: $12
11. Bentley Cleaning Caddy: $27
12. Style Selections Trash Can: $4
13. RGI HOME Antique Brass Iron Bin: $11
14. interDesign Plastic Drawer Organizer: $13
15. RGI HOME Natural Fiber Bin: $15
16. interDesign Drawer Organizer: $16
17. Simply Put Metal Cleaning Caddy: $34
18. Simply Put Cabinet Organizer: $45
19. Knape & Vogt Door/Wall Mount Metal Towel Holder: $32
20. Rev-A-Shelf Pull Out Trash Can: $92
21. Rev-A-Shelf Cutlery Insert Drawer Organizer: $16
22. Rev-A-Shelf Metal Cabinet Organizer: $19
23. Rev-A-Shelf Wood Cutlery Drawer Organizer: $97
24. Rev-A-Shelf Spice Tray Drawer Organizer: $48
We designed the Charly line of sofas, chairs, and ottomans with perfect proportions for comfort — with wide arms, a loungey depth, and stylish and practical lumbar pillows. Available in 70 kid-friendly, pet-friendly fabrics, this line was created with families in mind.
Our wood grain Shaker cabinet fronts were designed for busy, high-traffic homes like ours. Clad with durable textured thermofoils, this line is compatible with Sektion, Akurum, Godmorgon, and Besta cabinets from IKEA. It's the perfect, practical way to add the warmth of wood to all the rooms of your home.
We have teamed up with Loloi to create a line of rugs that are as affordable as they are beautiful. This collection houses a great mix of traditional and modern rugs, in cottage-y colorways, as well as vintage-inspired beauties that you’ll want to roll out in every room.
We partnered with Stuga on a line of hardwood floors — The Ingrid is really livable, and the color is very neutral. It doesn’t lean warm or cool, it’s that just right in-between. We have really loved putting it everywhere in our house. It’s the best jumping-off point for design, no matter your interior style. In addition to being beautiful, Ingrid is really durable — we have three kids, and we always have a home construction project going on. Ingrid stands up to it all.
Looking for our favorite things? A place to shop our home room by room, or just catch up on what Julia's wearing / loving right now? Browse the CLJ shop.
Befores, afters, mood boards, plans, failures, wins. We’ve done a lot of projects, and they’re all here.
We have a long-standing relationship with DIY, and love rolling our sleeves up and making it happen.
Even when you don’t want to rip down a wall, you can make that space in your home better. Right now.
Over the weekend Brooke (our social media manager) and I went to the Parade of Homes in the Raleigh area and it was so fun to get a feel of how other people in our new area are living and living large! The purpose of the parade is so that home builders and designers can […]
Another way for us to stay in touch! Joining our weekly newsletter gives you access to exclusive content, never-before-seen photos, your questions answered, and our favorite DIYs. Sign up below!
Make yourself right at home