It’s not uncommon for people to neglect proper research before they start designing their pantry – after all, it’s just a storage room. Well, let us tell you outright – that’s just wrong.
It’s very important that you care about the way your pantry is designed as much as you care about the kitchen itself – after all, you will be most likely using both of these at the same time. For that reason, whether your pantry is practical and convenient to use, will impact your entire kitchen life. For that reason, it’s best you take designing your pantry seriously.
As it is in the case of designing any room, it’s best you think about a few crucial aspects, to acquire maximum comfort after you’re done with your overhaul or designing a new pantry from scratch – let’s list all these important shenanigans.
Illumination – while it’s obvious for people to think about the light when they design all the rooms in their houses, for some weird reason they all tend to overlook that when thinking about their pantry. That’s a very typical mistake, coming from the belief that you do not normally spend time in the pantry, and just hop in and out of it, to grab a few necessities. Well, if you were one of these people, it’s time to change the way you perceive your pantry – the illumination inside of it is really important.
As your typical pantry is likely to have no windows at all, it deserves to have a proper illumination system – or else you’ll have to spend hours inside before you find whatever it is you wanted to pick up in the first place. For pantry illuminating, we suggest installing LED lighting, that’s both energy efficient and able to serve you for a long time without a problem. Remember to place the light switch in an easy to access and reachable spot. As your pantry will be dark as hell itself before you switch the lights on, it’s best if the light switch itself is illuminated when the lights are off.
Remember about illuminating your pantry well, or else suffer the consequences of things falling over your head when you push them off the shelves in the dark. You’ve been warned.
Door – while it seems trivial at first glance, it’s actually a crucial matter that people tend to neglect. The shape and opening way of your door are very important to be determined right at the planning stage, or else later it might get in the way of your other doors, cabinets or whatever stands in their way.
Two best options when it comes to a pantry, which is naturally a room designed as a free storage space room, are sliding doors or outward-opening doors. Both these options need no space left for them in the pantry while obviously the outward-opening doors need some outside.
All in all, the sliding doors are the best, because they do not need any space to operate both inside the pantry and outside of it. However, of for some weird reason, you’d prefer the door that open inward, keep it mind this will surely limit the already scarce space of a pantry. And you will need to take some measures to open it when you’re inside and shut it behind you. We wouldn’t recommend such door.
Height – high pantries are a very popular choice, as using the space available to you all the way to the ceiling is usually a smart thing to do – however, that calls for additional measures you have to take for your pantry to be convenient to use.
If you will be getting yourself one of such high pantries, it’s important you think ahead about the way you will be accessing the highest shelves – after all, what’s the point in having high shelves when you can’t get to them, right?
If your pantry will be a spacious one, then there is no problem in keeping an ordinary ladder around to be used – it’s best of its a ladder on sliding rails which will be attached to the shelves. Such a ladder won’t flip so you do not risk an accident when you use it. Also, keep in mind to store only the infrequently needed items on the top shelves, and keep your everyday necessities on the lower shelves.
In the case of a smaller pantry, a way better choice would be a step ladder, hidden somewhere around to be used when needed – ideally one that can be folded, so it uses as little space as possible.
Design – while, as we’ve said before, people don’t pay all that much attention to the pantry, which is after all hidden and out of the sight of your guests, it doesn’t mean you should just forget about it and allow for it to look like a troll’s cave. Of course, we don’t suggest you spend a fortune on it, but it’s still good if it’s cohesive in style with your kitchen. At the same time, it’s very important that the shelves are made from sturdy and durable materials, because they will have to take quite a weight without breaking. How to make both the aesthetics and practical aspect work together on a budget?
- Solid wood
While both solid wood and metal are quite pricey options, they are strong and good looking at the same time. If you’re looking for something on a tighter budget, however, plywood does the job and it does it well enough – and if you prepare it appropriately, will look good enough.
Placement – obviously enough, it’s absolutely crucial where will your pantry actually be. After all, this will affect the entire ergonomy of your cooking zone. Think carefully about the proper place for your pantry to be in, because that’s going to decide whether your pantry is actually helpful at all, making your kitchen life a breeze, or if it will do you more harm than good, ruining the experience.
It’s important that pantry is both not too far and not too close to your cooking zone. Don’t place it too close, or else your kitchen might lose the spacious feeling it should have, and don’t place it too far or else you’ll have to run a distance everytime you need to grab anything.
It’s not only the space between your pantry and the kitchen that’s important – consider its distance from your dining room and living room, as you can also store some dishes in the pantry and take them out when preparing your table.
The bottom line is – think carefully about the correct placement of your pantry because it’s going to have a massive impact on the convenience of your everyday life.
Arrangement – the way you arrange your shelves is another very important matter for your pantry experience. As we mentioned before, it’s important that you place the rarely used objects on the top shelves, so they do not get in your way while you use your pantry and are conveniently stored for later. If you need some of them later you can use the ladder we talked about before and get to them that way.
A good idea is installing glass shelvings for these upper shelves – that way, you’ll be able to see exactly what is being stored there at all times, without the need of climbing the ladder every time just to check it out.
Other than that, it’s good you make sure the shelves are not too deep, or else it might be hard to spot everything that’s been put on them outright. Place the items that you need frequently on the middle shelves and the heaviest of them on the lower shelves, so you do not have to lift them while standing on a ladder.
Features – it’s always worth it to think about any special features, that your pantry might need. Not all of them can be added after the pantry has been done, so keep that in mind.
Things like pullout baskets, cargo containers or slide-out shelves can vastly enhance your pantry experience. It’s good to adjust your pantry to your personal lifestyle – for example, if you’re the type of a person who likes a glass of wine every once in a while, it’s good you get yourself special wine racks and install them in the pantry.
No matter the kind of personal preferences, if you think about them right at the planning stage, the market offers everything that can be desired.
Use all the space available – just because you do not need the entire space of your pantry to be used for storing food, doesn’t mean it has to be left unused. Remember, that every inch of space you use in your pantry means free space somewhere else – your kitchen for example.
For that reason, if you have any wall in the pantry room left unused, think about features for keeping something else than food. Special hooks for aprons, cargo containers, or even just a space for your cleaning tools will work miracles in your overall house ergonomy, and the others rooms will surely be thankful for picking some weight off their shoulders.
Shelves – the planning stage of your pantry designing is the time when you should think about the way you’re going to use the pantry and the shelves inside of it. As mentioned before, it’s commonly in the pantry where people store the largest and most problematic cookware they possess. Because of that, think about special sizes for some of your shelves, so they can accommodate all the different shapes of your tools.
Be it your juicer or just some extraordinarily big pots, it’s unlikely that they will fit an ordinary shelve. Make a list of such items, and then design separate shelves of custom sizes solely for storing these very items.
Floor – remember not to neglect the kind of the flooring you install in your pantry. While it won’t be visible for your guests, so many think it’s unimportant, you will not only be walking on that floor, carrying a more or less heavy load but also sometimes you’ll be forced to use the ladder.
Your pantry flooring has to be of the kind that protects you from sliding and flipping. It’s also good to use something rather sturdy, because if you accidently push something off the higher shelves, your ceramic tiles could easily break. We wouldn’t want that, right?
Because of that it’s best you use solid wood or laminate for your flooring – both of these are sturdy and durable, while not being very slippery. Remember that your safety depends on it, so best ask a professional for help right at the planning stage.
That’s all we can think of when it comes to the most important aspects to think about while designing your pantry. Just don’t rush and put some proper planning and thought to it.
A well planned and designed pantry will certainly make all the hassle worth it.