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Monday, October 3, 2011

Spice Girl

I spent Sunday afternoon cleaning and organizing my spice cabinet. It didn’t really seem like work.

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It all began when I spotted this old spice rack at a thrift store a few weeks ago. Do you see the $5.00 price tag?

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It made me think about what my current baking center looked like.

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Then I spotted this gem at the Goodwill. (You can also find vintage and antique spice racks and bottles on Ebay.)

While I have plans for the blue spice rack, I gave this one to the Fashionista, minus the bottles, so she could store her acrylic paint in it.

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I kept the bottles for my cooking spices since this situation provides no dinner inspiration whatsoever. 

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I washed all the bottles and removed their labels. For those that had a plastic cap I gave them two coats of spray paint and then let them dry for a week while I went to California. 

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On Sunday afternoon I happily transferred the contents of uninspiring plastic jars into quaint glass bottles. The funnel got a wipe down after each use so that the spices would not be transferred.

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The smaller spice jars seemed to fill the bottles perfectly.

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I then gave the interior cupboard a wipe down and covered the back with inexpensive wrapping paper. Afterwards I thought, “Wouldn’t old cookbook pages be adorable?”

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There are numerous ways to create new labels. I decided that black chalkboard contact paper would work well for this project. After a visit to several stores with no luck I found that the least expensive online source for chalkboard contact paper was at Amazon. It is somewhat pricey and it also requires that you have a paper punch. You can also buy adorable, ready made labels from bugaboo.

I wonder if you could paint regular contact paper with chalkboard paint. Has anyone tried that?

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The beauty of the blackboard contact paper is that it is repositionable. So if you change the contents of the bottles, you can easily change the label. I used a chalkboard pen to write out the spice. It too can be erased away.

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Yes, I alphabetize my spices. I even did this when they were in ho hum jars. It just makes it easier to find the right ingredient. That is until someone else rustles around and doesn’t put the jar back in the correct spot. I feel nice today so my perpetrators shall not be named. :)

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I am aware that this is…very detail oriented. Feel free to send me this T shirt:

My baking spices received black tops to help keep them separate from the cooking spices. Does anyone else  feel joy when looking at sprinkles?

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Of course if you spin the lazy susan around you get a real life reality check. :)

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But turned around it appears that you can indeed bottle happiness.

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I am currently working on some darling bathroom organization and hope to have it finished by Wednesday.


See you then!


Linking to:

Shabby Nest, Romantic Home, BNOTP, Today’s Creative Blog, Someday Crafts, Remodelaholic, Momma Hen, Coastal Charm


Julie Tucker-Wolek said...

I loveee these!! It turned out amazing!! And a friend of mine used these on a project that she posted last week and she says they work really good! :):):):):):):) I haven't worked with this product before, but I have used other things made by the same company and I love their stuff! :):):):):):):):):):):)

Vicki said...

Love your spice rack makeover. I go to Goodwill all the time, but never thought about looking for a vintage spice rack there (I look for books, old Noritake china patterns). Now I feel inspired to spice up my spices! Thanks for the inspiration...

Karena said...

Oh I would not want to show you my spice jar situation!! Yours look great Laura!!

By the way I cannot thank you enough for your very sweet comment the other day. You are a true friend!


Art by Karena

Cat said...

I'm lovin your new spicy look..
and the spice towers are cute too..

Kelley said...

I just got my spice/baking cabinet unpacked and shelved last weekend. These are GREAT! I love looking into organized cabinets!

Priscilla said...

When my daughter moved to her own apartment, she visited a local spice shop and purchased a couple of dozen spice jars. She bought several containers for flour, sugar, cereal, etc.,at Ikea and painted chalkboard labels on each one. Then, when she changes the contents, she can just write the new name on the label with chalk.
She is so OCD that she spells it CDO!

Sue said...

I really need to organize my spices. They are just all in a basket at the moment just waiting for me to do something spectacular with them but...

Here is a link to a site that has a recipe to make your own chalk board paint. I see people using this all the time all over the internet.

April said...

That's a really sweet project, Laura! I wouldn't have thought to re-use old jars and not the racks, but yours came out great!
The issue I have in my not-too-small but SMALL kitchen is lack of cupboard space. The spinning spice racks I have take up SO much room. I do love your sweetly uncluttered look!

Ann@A Sentimental Life said...

I did not even know there was chalkboard paper? What a great idea! i am always straighten mine up. I do have the herbs in one pull our container and the things like cinnamon in one. I just pull them out of the pantry to find what I want.

AshTreeCottage said...

I love how your project turned out! I had no idea that you could buy chalkboard paper. What a great tip ~ thanks so much.

Susan and Bentley

jeanette from everton terrace said...

Job well done!
My spice cupboard is one of the only spots in my house that is always in good order. I keep mine alphabetized and since my husband doesn't cook, they stay this way :)

The Pennington Point said...

You got me with the OCD picture. You don't even want to know how organized my spice cabinet is. I am an absolute Nazi about it. "Get those spices back into alphabetical order immediately!" I will shout if the children put the cinnamon to the left of the chili powder. LOL! Great job. Lisa~

Ceekay- Thinkin of Home said...

Good for you...and yes, my spice jars are in a mess...I try, really I do, but that perpetrator must be at my house too! said...

Love the OCD tee shirt! If I find one I will send it to you. Glad I found your blog, I'm your newest follower, stop by and visit when you get a chance.

Linda said...

Spectacular job with that, Laura! :)

I desperately need to do that - when I saw your "before" photo, I giggled ever so slightly, because you would shake your head if you saw my mess of a spice cabinet. But I literally have at least 60 different bottles and bags of spices on the large lazy suzy corner cabinet, and none of the spice jar organizers are large enough to accommodate, so they just have to stay like they are for now until I figure out a better way. Instead of doing projects, Jim and I were out hiking and biking - goofing off. We do a lot of that nowdays. ;)

Love and blessings towards your new week,

The Vintage Farmhouse said...

Too cute!

French said...

Wow this turned out great (of course!) might have a fright next week when you see my attempt at organizing spices. Be sure to stop by to see the apple galette recipe today; was wondering if you two would like this next week in lieu of anything pumpkin!

ℳartina @ Northern Nesting said...

Laura what a great idea! My spices are organized but don't look this good! Thanks for the invite, see ya on Wed! Martina

Karen said...

That looks fantastic! Try as I might I cant keep my spices in order. I live with three others who don't respect my OCD LOL.

Janette - The2Seasons said...

Thanks for visiting The 2 Seasons, and I am here to check out your site. I love this kind of project. The OCD part of it is perfect for me. It seems like a great way to spend a Sunday afternoon.

Johanna said...

Hello Laura,
that is ingenious. The new jars with new labels look so beautiful. It has a charming look now and no more stress to find the right sice. I love this.
Best greetings, Johanna

Shannah @ Just Us Four said...

Those look great. I have a spice rack update on my to-do list and I love your idea of using the contact paper. So smart!

Auntie Em said...

What a fresh and organized spice cabinet you have! Love the black lids and labels. I loved the way the stuff that just doesn't fit anywhere is tucked in behind. At least we know you don't have MS syndrome even if you are OCD! And there's nothing wrong with being neat and tidy!
Thanks for sharing! :)

Designing Domesticity said...

Wow, so well organized! Love it. Keep hearing about this chalkboard contact paper - need to check it out! Thanks for sharing and stopping by my blog earlier. Liz

Craftymoose Crafts said...

Terrific job! I hung an old spice rack on my craft room wall & put some seed beads in it...very colorful!

The Boston Lady said...

My spice "area" looks suspiciously like your before shots! Are you sure you were in Cali and not lurking around here taking pics? I am looking forward to seeing what you do with that blue spice rack. Ann

Tammy at Tammy Loves Dishes said...

Love the organization and that you used thrifted bottles. The labels are such a cute idea!

I also like to keep my spices alphabetized, when possible. Right now I have so many that they are in two different places and it's a little hard to keep them organized. Tucking your cute idea away for future use!

Gina said...

Your spice cabinet looks wonderful. Chalkboard labels are great. I love having everything perfectly organized like this.

Thanks for stopping by my blog today & for the kind comments about my bathroom.

Petite Michelle Louise said...

ove...LOVE! Must try it! TFS!

Creative Grammie said...

Aloha Laura,
What a very cool thing you did with your spice jars. How very personalized. You're way too neat for me.
TFS and have a great week.

Jen said...

I love this great way to inspire cooking! Nothing like pretty containers and organization to really make being in the kitchen an easier task. I have always alphabetized my spices, too. Those teenage daughters can really mess with organization can't they?? =)
You have definitely got me looking for pretty jars so I can make my cabinet a little more appealing.

Have a wonderful week!

poindextr said...

You are so funny with the change-up on your blog title!! oh, and sprinkles? Don't even get me started, i won't be able to concentrate on anything else for at least 5 minutes. Great job with those cute little jars - love them! Hope to try to join in your party tomorrow, thanks so so much for letting me know!! xo Diane

Liz said...

NO NO! Not OCD! :) No way, Jose'!

I hung a full length rack on the inside of my pantry door... I LOVE it. I believe you won't use what you don't see. All perfectly organized... and more is easy to keep it that way. This is darling. :)

~Liz said...


First off, I loved Sweet Boy's photo. How precious is he? :)

Also, I've always admired the sweet simplicity of the Shakers, Amish and Quakers {we have a large Quaker population in this area.} I am busy going through my home: use it, sell it, donate it or toss it.

Your spice jars are perfect -- practical and appealing to the eye.
OCD is one trait I am not pleased to admit that I share with you, but I am sure you already knew that. Yes my spices are all perfectly lined up in alphabetical order.

Your Friend,

Debbie said...

I keep searching for an old spice rack like that. Mom had one, and I want to do a great redo.

My cabinets look like your before picture. Maybe I will at least clean it out in my quest to fall in love with my house.

MommaHen said...

I NEEEED this! I get attacked every time I cook, by falling spice jars. ...maybe one day.