Part 1: Unconventional Storage Containers for the Kitchen

Hi Readers:
For the next four weeks, each Monday I’ll be looking at an area of the house, and exploring how you can get it organized. Now for me, I like to be clean enough so I don’t have to stress, but organized to where I can find everything when I need to. I’ve found I can keep my home organized without spending big bucks on plastic dividers and fancy boxes.  And it’s decorative as well!  With a little organization (or un-organization) and these simple tips you can use your own unconventional storage containers as well.  Now on to the kitchen.

When I first set out to clean up and organize my kitchen, I started with the pantry.  I had old tubs, jars, and tupperware that I couldn’t even remember where it’d come from.  Much of the containers didn’t have a matching lid, and because of their loud colors, they got tossed in the throw away pile.  But the jars I saved.  Not only were they ornamental (once I washed out the dust), they were functional as well – items like coffee, coffee filters, tea, sugar, etc. all fit inside.  Once the jars had dried I simply lined up the items I wanted to clear from my counters, and placed them inside.  And because the jars can be stacked, I saved on room while still being able to identify each item.

Photo courtesy of

For jars that didn’t have a lid, I found them a replacement by purchasing jar lids in the canning section.  I also found that lids I already had would fit the jars – lids to Parmesan cheese containers, and Great Value salsa and spaghetti sauce tops will all fit on a standard Mason jar.  Eventually I began buying groceries with glass jars just so I could reuse them.  But for those who’d rather their jars match, you can pick them up by the dozen at your local grocery store.

Photo courtesy of Twitpic

Mike James