In the fall and early winter we decided to make some small changes to the kitchen in our 130 year old home. We have a nice large bright kitchen – that makes me happy – and had previously refinished the floors, painted, fixed a door, replaced the cabinets, installed open shelving and kind of fiddled with the pantry. Sometimes it’s nice to just make a few small changes here and there!
Just before Christmas, we replaced the island countertop with quartz – and decided to change-up the pantry. We really just had a wicker shelf with some jars – and I have discovered that I am a bit of a pantry maven. I just LOVE to see all of my spices and drygoods – and I have a thing for mason jars.
My Love of Mason Jars
Keeping my dry goods in glass jars, keeps them fresh, free from bugs and (HORROR – not that this would ever happen!) rodents. I prefer glass jars over plastic containers, and I like to have good sized quantities of spices on hand! SO – we needed more pantry shelving! Not to mention that over the pandemic years, my husband and I turned into the Little Red Hen – and now have umpteen types of flour for our breadmaking.
Another Point of View – Real Estate Buyers
When we listed our house for sale – and then quickly changed our mind about a year and a half ago – we got to see our house from the point of view of potential homebuyers. Not being a big fan of cupboards, we had a vintage sideboard in the kitchen for storage – along with the wicker rack. The buyers apparently couldn’t visualize this as storage for the kitchen and thought there could be more.
We decided to replace the vintage sideboard with something a touch smaller, that blended with our cabinetry and could also have open shelving on top to store our spice jars. The search was on – to find just the right thing. It didn’t seem like there was the perfect thing for a while!
We considered buying a piece from Wayfair – but couldn’t come up with the right piece in the right price at the right size. It needed to be about 50 inches wide – and height didn’t matter (we have tall ceilings)-but not too deep (maybe 17″) – so it didn’t jut out into the room. We found a piece for about $5000 that would take months to get here – likely from parts unknown. That just didn’t seem right!
|Jarware Miscellaneous Kitchen Tools – Mason Jar Salt & Pepper Topper|
|Masontops 5-Piece Wide-Mouth Kombucha Starter Kit Yellow|
Then we called our kitchen contractor and asked for a quote – they didn’t really listen to our requirements and had to be pushed to get back to us – and finally they quoted us $5100 before tax and without hardware for something that we really didn’t want! This just wasn’t right either.
We really wanted something solid – not made from manufactured wood – Real wood, and we wanted it soon! So we started to look at vintage pieces. First we searched Facebook Marketplace, but found that things were just not quite the right size – or when we saw something we liked it was sold before we could snatch it up. Then we hit the antique markets, Habitat for Humanity, thrift stores – and suddenly – as we got close to home – we found a piece that would work (right around the corner from our house – after all that searching).
We found a buffet/baker’s rack which was in very good condition. I felt guilty painting it because it had a really nice finish already – but our goal was for it to fit in with the rest of the kitchen. We took one of our existing cabinet drawers to the paint store – and had them colour match the white cabinet paint. We purchased white primer – and white melamine paint.
Now – I’ve been known to splash paint on any old thing quickly – but this time, we wanted the piece to look perfect! My husband carefully unscrewed all the hardware and the shelves – so that I wouldn’t spill paint on them. We were happy that the hardware matched our existing kitchen cabinet hardware – in an antique pewter.
I took my time painting the piece, doing my best to use smooth brush strokes and avoid drips. I applied two coats of white primer, and AT LEAST three coats of white melamine paint. After the painting was complete, my husband replaced all the hardware, and I happily loaded the shelves with my jars.
|Masontops 3-Piece Wide-Mouth Water Kefir Starter Kit Blue|
Our “new pantry” is much sturdier than our old wicker rack, and has more room to display our jars of dry goods. We didn’t have to install more kitchen cabinets, or add on a new pantry room!
The pantry cupboard – now looks good and fits with the rest of the kitchen. I have my jars back on top now – mostly all labelled – and of course we still can’t find anything in our kitchen!
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