I set out today to write about kitchen pantry storage and I stumbled upon this beautiful image. After doing some research I realized that I had better qualify just what I mean when I say pantry since there’s quite a big difference between a beautifully designed butler’s pantry and a utilitarian pantry which stores all of the necessary dry goods to feed your family. But why can’t that utilitarian pantry still be beautiful? I am a firm believer that your kitchen can be both functional and beautiful, so why not the pantry, too?
While the butler’s pantry above, complete with silver service, would make a lovely addition to someone’s home, today we’ll focus on designing a pantry to store all of the goodies that you need to get meals on the table. Designing your pantry is just as important as planning for anything else in your kitchen. It’s important to keep in mind how you’re going to use it and where you’re going to locate it. Do you have a large or small family? Do you cook a lot? Do you entertain a lot? Do you often buy in bulk? Do you need to store cookie sheets, small appliances and serving trays here, or do you only have room for food? And the all-important consideration: will it be easy to unload groceries here?
The ideal walk-in pantry:
- Is located close to the food prep area of the kitchen
- Utilizes a combination of storage options, including shelves of varying depth and drawers, if possible
- Has good lighting (and maybe even some electrical outlets for small appliances)
- Is designed so that items are easy to find and easy to access
- Has a place for everything!
As I pondered these questions myself, I realized that many of the pantry images that I love didn’t really meet many of my design requirements. Often times, the shelves were too deep and items were difficult to find — or the heavy KitchenAid mixer was stored on such a high shelf that it would never be used. Unfortunately, sometimes when designing a space we pay so much attention to the aesthetics that we forget the function. So, even though I love a beautiful butler’s panty, I think that the second pantry image would better fit my lifestyle. And when there’s a place for everything and everything is in its place, then I know I’ve set myself up for success…and that’s beautiful!