The lines have fallen to me in pleasant places; Indeed, my heritage is beautiful to me. ~ Psalm 16:6 nasb

Sunday, February 2, 2014

Decorating Storage Boxes for the Pantry

The Chicken Chick
I'm linking up with the Clever Chicks blog for this post.  Please click on their button to the right to see what they're all about, and to visit others' blogs and be inspired!

I'm not the most craftsy person; actually, I freely admit I'm not craftsy at all.  That's why I love Pinterest--for the ideas I find that may actually be do-able for me!  I had discovered Mod Podge through Pinterest, and you'll see that gluey-sticky whatever-it-is coating stuff featured in today's blog.  Read on.  :)

Remember my newly cleaned and reorganized pantry?  Here's the reminder photos (left and right sides) from yesterday's post if you didn't see it:

Nice and clean, tidy and organized!  But, see those green Chicken of the Sea tuna boxes?  And the cut-out oatmeal boxes?  Even though I love them for their function--holding groups of smaller items in a neat and tidy way--I am somewhat disturbed, shall we say, about their "cluttery" and messy feel.  Let me amend that:  I was somewhat disturbed.  I am no longer, because I fixed it.  :)

To me, order = beauty.  And order means neat and clean lines, not busy, out-of-place colors.  Something had to be done with my free storage boxes.  I didn't need Pinterest to inspire me, either.  After discovering the beauty and ease of Mod Podge for crafts such as beautifying these glass food storage jars, I had just the thing for my pantry boxes, which now look like this:

What I used:

  • Mod Podge -- matte finish
  • foam brush
  • scrapbook paper
  • pencil
  • scissors

Here's what I did:

First, I cut around the top of this Quaker instant oatmeal box (yes, my husband requests I purchase these for quick breakfasts on busy mornings), and cut out an opening in the front.

I traced this front section onto the back of a sheet of scrapbook paper (12x12 which is what I have plus these boxes were too big for smaller paper).  Then, I cut out the shape with about a one-inch or so border all the way around.  I cut slits all the way around the edges, and cut out corners at the tops (they look like tabs).  I figured the tabs would fold over those littler sections more easily than folding corners up and around and over (you'll see that below).

The reason for cutting the slits:  the paper folds more easily over the edges of the cardboard box in smaller sections rather as one whole section.

I love this stuff!

I coated the backside of the scrapbook paper with Mod Podge, staying within the pencil lines I had drawn.  I carefully set the front of the box down onto the paper (easier to me than lifting the paper up and putting it on the box, but whatever works for you is fine).  I carefully smoothed the paper toward the edges to get rid of buckles and air bubbles, and let it dry for several minutes before the next step.

Then, working in sections, I coated three or four tabs with Mod Podge, then folded them over and around and into crevices, pressing them down.  I worked my way around the entire front of the box with this method.

Those "tabs" at the top folded over nicely, without extra bulk.

The corners got folded over and around.

For the front labels, I used Microsoft Word 2010, created several identical one-cell charts, typed in my titles using the Nauvoo font, printed them out on simple printer paper, and cut them out along my border (I chose a fancier border than simple solid black).

I coated the back side with a thin layer of Mod Podge and secured the label to the front of the box, slightly higher than middle.

Once the label had dried, I coated the whole front and papered sides of the box with a thin layer of Mod Podge.

I let the boxes sit all afternoon to make sure the Mod Podge really dried well.  I didn't use any finish coats, or extra coats, since these were free coardboard boxes and they won't see heavy use.  Here's my baking box on my pantry shelf:

Here's another oatmeal box, below.  You can see that I didn't use scrapbook paper to cover the sides, but just enough to fold the paper over.

After two successful boxes, it was time to conquer my tuna boxes!

Below, you can see that I used extra paper to cover more of the sides of these boxes than I did with the oatmeal boxes.  That's because these boxes stick out a little further from the edge of my "lovely" metal shelves, so they'd be more noticeable.  I wanted to make sure they were covered more deeply.

Yes, I have a box for other stuff!

Here are the boxes on my shelves!

With metal shelving units, the shelves themselves are not even (you can see the Lunch and Snacks box above tilted along the sag in the shelf), so smaller jars and boxes always fell or slid over or never stayed together properly.  These boxes contain like items in a way that makes them easier to find.  Plus, they're so pretty!

Lest you think I'm this wonderfully craft-minded and awesome organizer, take another look at the photo above.  I completely missed one of the tuna boxes on the left!  I didn't even see it until after I took the picture.  *rats*

I have that last silly tuna box to cover, but it's not the only one any more!  Fernando and I just made our bi-weekly run to Costco, and I came home with three more boxes!!  Two of them are going right into my pantry to contain some bulk spices on the left.  Hopefully I'll remember to cover that other box along with my new ones!!

Back to life,

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