I love using jars for beautiful but practical storage systems in our home. I use them for everything…from keeping odds and ends from room to room organized, to storing clothespins together, to housing a rainbow of crayons in our craft basket, to arranging and displaying the contents in our medicine cabinet just *so*. Your basic, clear jar is a simple but charming way to store the smaller items in your home. One of my favorite methods of glass jar storage is how we use them in our kitchen pantry. They just happen to be the perfect thing for storing your dry goods.

When we moved into this old house one of the first things I started taking note of was its lack of closet space. We have one closet for linens upstairs and that’s pretty much it, other than a couple in the bedrooms. Don’t get me wrong, homes from the 1920’s are dreamy! But they do have some downsides like everything else. Like our last home that was 800 square feet with no storage whatsoever, we have had to be rather creative when to comes to where to put things. We rely on all sorts of containers, make-shift closets like a cupboard or cabinet, and our basement for bigger items. Honestly, Andrew and I really don’t care for storing things down there unless of course we have to and it’s something like Christmas decor or special newborn pieces I’m keeping hold of just in case. 😉

I decided when unpacking our kitchen boxes to utilize our original Shaker style cabinets for dry pantry goods, like rice and beans and dry ingredients for baking, right alongside our everyday items like plates, bowls, and cups. I did the same at our old place on the open shelving we installed because there was literally little to no storage in our tiny shotgun kitchen. I know some of you out there are familiar with this style. In our current home, the beautiful but transparent glass doors on our cabinets mean you can’t really shove things in there willy nilly and get away with it. Or I suppose you could, but the organizer in me isn’t going to have that. I even organize the inside of my cupboards that aren’t see-though, because I really enjoy the process of organizing and it makes it easier do find this or that.

I think pretty organization is key if it’s going to be visible. My mom had passed down a few of these jars from her vintage collection years ago but I found the rest at Walmart for a really good price. They’re not vintage but they are pretty much identical to the select old ones I have. I love that they come in three sizes, giving me more storage for sugar and flour. You can find them here. And then there’s the whole knowing what’s inside said glass jars, because you think you’ll be able to remember that this particular shade of white is indeed arrow root powder, but you won’t. Trust me. No one wants to be in a frenzy sticking their noses (or fingers) in various containers to see if this or that is flour or sugar or soda or wheat when in the middle of a recipe. You gotta label them! Again, to no surprise, I use my DYMO embossing label maker for this. I am warning you, once you get one of these labelers you will get a little slap happy and start going nuts for fun. I think it’s a thing the Monica Geller’s of the world can only fully appreciate. With that, have fun making your kitchen pantry all purdy guys!


  • I love storing things in jars but my hangup is what do you do about the directions on the bags you just tossed? I, for one, can never remember how to properly cook rice, or Israeli couscous, or millet, and rely on the packaging quite often. same with pasta! So many people store their pasta in containers but depending on the noodle, they can have significantly different cooking times. Am I the only one who struggles with this? Quick question: can the labels go through the dishwasher? Beautiful kitchen, Amanda!ReplyCancel

    • I have the same problem as Carolyn! Ha! I want to organize everything neatly, but then i’m like, “How do I cook this?!”

      I’m also wondering if that type of label comes off easily. I’ve tried writing on the lids, or stickers… but it’s a pain to switch up.

      Love your blog!ReplyCancel

      • Daniella

        I’m also curious… if it doesn’t all fit in a jar at once… what does everyone do with the half empty packs?ReplyCancel

    • Samantha

      Perhaps you could cut off the part of the package with the cooking directions and tape it on the bottom of the jar? Sneaky hiding spot 🙂ReplyCancel

  • Jameson

    Everything you touch is beautiful! I revamped my pantry like this when we moved into our house with the “le parfait” clip jars that come in all sizes too Including a 3 liter size that I have the most of. Thank you for sharing your labeling idea…. Until now I have either been trying to remember the items, or leaving a piece of the box or bag inside the jar that came with the contents. But this is much prettier. I may have to put that label maker on my wish list!ReplyCancel

  • Laura Johns

    YESS!! i do the same – glass storage and dymo embossed labels for EVERYTHING! 🙂ReplyCancel

  • These cupboards are huge, would love some! I need to reorganise our cupboards as I find food gets wasted. Definitely want to make some of those lovely jars too, simple yet more personal. XReplyCancel

  • Hayley

    We love storing our dry food in glass jars! hiw do you mark the expiration date on things? Do youwait to refill the jar until you’ve used all of the first “batch” of the contents?ReplyCancel

  • How lovely!

    Our kitchens are very similar. Mine have the glass doors as well but the bottom cabinets are an espresso and the hardware is more modern.

    People always ask me if it is hard to keep my shelves organized and I tell them that they would be this organized whether or not I had glass =) I think it is really fun to display things. I love your big jars and they are lovely. I have flour and sugar displayed on the open too. I have hand painted tea cups displayed higher and every day use on the bottom.

    I totally love our 1925 home but it does have some down features and I try not to store too much in the basement either. =)ReplyCancel

  • Beautiful post! We use this system on open shelving system our pantry is so tiny. A simple idea beautifully photographed & written here.ReplyCancel

  • Alison

    I also love storing my pantry items in jars so they look pretty, but my question is what do you do with the half-full larger bags, boxes, and containers after you’ve poured them into your glass containers? Those are definitely not pretty and I never know what to do with them. Thank you!
    And I think you mentioned this recently, but I would love a post about how you thrift shop.ReplyCancel