Thursday, November 29, 2012

Organize It: The Spice Cabinet

Last week while I was in the kitchen preparing a few side dishes and baked goodies for Thanksgiving, I decided I needed to organize my spice cabinet.  To say it was a hot mess is an understatement.

I couldn't really see what had in there.  Trying to find the rubbed sage threw me into a fit, and I decided to put an end to the madness once and for all.

I pulled everything out and took an inventory of what I had.  That was the truly scary part.  Some things were expired or even nastier - clumped together in the bottle - yuck.  I also found a few multiples that I didn't even know I had and a few empty bottles.  Almost half of what I had in there went in the trash.

Then I wiped down the inside of the cabinet really good (hence the stool - I'm not tall enough to wipe down the top shelf without standing on the stool).   And now,

I can actually see everything I have in there!  Honestly, I love those spice cabinets I've seen in Martha Stewart magazine where everything is in pretty matching labeled bottles,  but my real life just doesn't work that way.  I know I'd never keep up with re-bottling things, and I go through basil and oregano way too fast to even try it.  I think it's important to be real with yourself when you tackle an organization project.  Organizing anything only pays off if you're able to keep it that way.

Want to know what kind of magic I worked on my spice bottles?

I used command strips to create a second row.  This way I can see everything at a glance without having to buy a spice bottle riser.  This also gives me space in the middle of this shelf for flat packets - taco seasoning and soup mixes.  And I really didn't need a full command strip to hang them either.  I cut most of them down since the bottles I used command strips on were plastic and don't weigh much.  Due to the velcro nature of the strips, I can easily remove the bottles to use and stick them right back up there.  Then when it's time to discard them the base command strip (the one that's on the wall) will stay in place, and I'll just cut another little piece for the new bottle.  So far this is working out perfectly for me.  And since I always have command strips on hand for various projects around the house I don't think this will be too difficult to keep up with either.

But the best part is - my kids think I have magic powers.  They were like, "Ummmmm, Mom how are those spice bottles floating in the air?"  I said, "Duh, I told you have super powers!"  

This little organization project cost me nothing (I already had the command strips), was not planned in advance, and took practically zero time.  And yet, it makes me ridiculously happy!  I love a quick fix - don't you?

So what do you think, would command strips on spices work for you?  I'm sure some of you have tons more spices than I do.  Being that I'm not exactly the greatest cook and I like to keep things simple, this is all I really need and use.

The winner of The Enchanted Fig Tree Giveaway is
 AnonymousNovember 25, 2012 7:08 PM
I really love the glass buoy....super cute...thankful for my wonderful husband
I'll be sending an email to the winner!  Congrats!  


  1. Amazing! I LOVE the Command strip idea! Thanks for sharing it :)

  2. Um, that's GENIUS! Love the idea of using the Command strips!!

  3. Totally awesome-I can see spice jars on the inside of the cabinet doors too!

  4. Butter my buns and call me a biscuit, that is smart!

    I had just decided today that I need to use the pull out thingy in my cabinet by the stove for all my spices. We just have too many. And there's no stopping us! Now all I need is somewhere else to store all those pesky pots and pans. I have an idea for that, too. :)

  5. ok so to me, the best part is those gnomes!!!! i need some gnomes in my pantry so it can be magical, too.

  6. This is awesome! Such a great idea! And instead of having to buy more command strips (those bad boys are expensive!) you can keep the lid of the old bottle you are replacing and just put it on the new bottle!

    New to the blog world and recently stumbled upon yours and I am definitely loving it! :)

  7. Totally and completely jealous of your spice cabinet makeover! I can't even tell you how many times I buy cinnamon, or vanilla, or cumin, or something similar to find out that I already had some in theunorganized spice cabinet.

  8. Love the look of your cabinet! Command strips would not work for me (as much as I wish it would!) because I simply use far too many spices. I use a lazy Susan for the most often used items (and yes, they are alphabetized) and a basket for the larger bottles and lesser used items. I love the look of the matching bottles, too, but I'm with you-I'd never keep it up!

  9. Do you have any tips in how to keep dark hardwood floor cleaned? I feel mine are always dirty..

    1. That really is a tough one- dark hardwoods are pretty high maintenance because you can see everything. I use a swiffer for dust and bellawood hardwood floor cleaner - which is what the manufacturer of our hardwood recommended. It works really great!

  10. I'll check out the bellawood, thanks!!

  11. Hi Carmel, spotted you on Emily Clark today and loved your suggestion! I'm your newest follower! Would love if you'd follow me back on my blog! cheers! Heather


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