If you have a pantry in your home you probably already know that it is a space that is often overlooked when it comes to style, and it’s not hard to see why. I mean, it is basically a closet to store food and, perhaps, mixing bowls or serve ware, right? Or, for some moms out there, it can be a place to hide from your family when you just can’t handle hearing, “MOM!” for the 4,632nd time and it’s not even noon! Either way, the pantry is pretty much all about function and, normally, not much else. However, it doesn’t have to be that way! There is no reason that this space can’t pack a little style punch all on its own.
I love to cook for my family, and we love to entertain. So the pantry is a space in my home where I spend a lot of quality time. (And, yes, I have been known to use the space as a hideout as well.) Our pantry is a bit unique in that it is also a passageway to a staircase leading to a mudroom/lower pantry area that exits to the backyard. This makes it a high traffic area in our home.
As is the case for most homes, our pantry and mudroom were basically dumping grounds. We have open shelving in our kitchen instead of cabinets so I crammed our pantry with mixing bowls, sippy cups, random serve ware, small appliances and all food items that I wanted to attempt to keep out of sight. The mudroom was the cluttered home to winter boots, shoes, sports equipment and recycling bins. It was a mess.
It’s taking some bravery on my part to show these “before” pictures although, truth is, it really has looked much worse than these pictures represent. After living in our home for over 3 years and hosting several backyard parties in which I would shudder internally every time one of our guests walked through this space, I finally decided to do something about it.
I decided that I wanted to make the wall behind the open shelving an accent wall throughout both the pantry and mudroom. In my browsing for decor ideas I had seen a very simple herringbone pattern wallpaper used in a bedroom space and decided to use this design as inspiration in painting the back wall of all the shelving.
I began by painting all of the shelving, trim and stairs in a satin finish in Decorator’s White by Benjamin Moore. (Tip: For shelving, stairs and doors I always use Benjamin Moore’s Advance paint line. It covers well, dries very quickly and cures a very durable surface that does not chip easily and is easy to wipe clean. It costs a little more but is, in my opinion, totally worth it in high use spaces!) I then painted the back walls of all of the shelving in the same white in flat finish. I measured the width of the back wall of the shelving and decided how many rows of the herringbone design I wanted to paint in the space and then calculated how far apart they would be from one another. I ran 2″ painter’s tape in strips from the top of the wall to the bottom as a spacing guide. I then used a ruler and black oil based paint pen marker that I purchased at a local craft store and set to drawing the herringbone pattern.
I then painted the remaining walls a soft grey that I have used throughout our home, Edgecomb Grey by Benjamin Moore in flat finish.
Once painting was complete it was all about decluttering, cleaning and organizing. I don’t know about you, but freshening up a space always motivates me to keep it neat and tidy. I bought a new rug and baskets from Home Goods to hide all of our “junk” like bug spray, bubbles for the kids backyard play, drink koozies, trash bags, etc., and placed a few decorative items on the unused upper shelves of the mudroom. We had recently completed some work in our kitchen in which we had new cabinetry built around our refrigerator, which took some of the space strain off the pantry. With a little reorganizing, the pantry became a much less cluttered, better organized space.
To complete the space I added two new semi-flushmount Schoolhouse light fixtures purchased at Home Depot.
A little paint, accessories and a good old cleaning can take an ordinary space like the pantry to new heights. I am no longer screaming on the inside when people walk through this space. Our pantry and mudroom are now light, bright, organized and stylish. We even added a little holiday decor to the space this year which personalizes it even more. I can tell you that it has become my favorite hiding place in the house because it’s pretty and it has food! What more could you ask for?
Paint – www.benjaminmoore.com
Lighting Fixtures – https://www.homedepot.com/p/World-Imports-Luray-12in-1-Light-Chrome-Semi-Flushmount-with-Schoolhouse-White-Glass-Shade-WI900708/203274182?cm_mmc=Shopping%7CTHD%7CG%7C0%7CG-BASE-PLA-D27L-InteriorLighting%7C&gclid=CjwKCAiApdPRBRAdEiwA84bo3wycW3YE4kmwU5_RClEljEYy2vPZroAWOmhODJyy-pwFbcu1pOBXIBoC2Q8QAvD_BwE&gclsrc=aw.ds&dclid=CNDf0JTDj9gCFdZ7YgodqDQJXw
Bench Pillow – Hearth & Hand with Magnolia for Target
Black and White Basket – Nate Berkus for Target
Natural Baskets and Area Rug – HomeGoods