The evolution of my tea storage

Am I weird or does anyone else love the first few months after a move when it’s time to really grab a hold of the new space and make it your own? Like many of you, my kitchen is where I really dig in to achieve ownership.

I moved into a new place recently, and those first few meals in the unfamiliar environment came together with a side of confusion. Meal creation was accentuated with haphazard bumbling around boxes, making my way to the hastily put away silverware so I didn’t have to eat with my fingers. Which of these boxes had the bowls? Eventually things felt a bit normalized once the spices and major utensils were put away. This time I noticed something: organization seems to be weak on the first arrangement. In my new place there’s plenty of shelf space to store all my stuff, but once everything is put away the spaces felt cramped. I knew my organization needed revision.

I dig finding little storage and organization revisions, like the recent changes I made to my tea collection. I used to store my tea in a squarish wire basket while living in my RV, but I often poorly squished the tea boxes and pouches into it like an irritating game of Tetris. The basket kept everything together, but it was mostly a pain to use. With all the teas in one place I could at least grab the basket and rummage around to find the right flavor. Too bad it took up shelf space.

One day I went to make my morning tea and noticed there were just two bags left of Irish Breakfast tea. I decided to clip the front of the box and discard the rest of the packaging, combining it with the remaining tea into a little zip-top baggie. It’s funny how little space it took up without the clumsy container. I thought I’d try keeping the rest of my collection in plastic bags as well. This ended up saving even more space and cut out the hassle of trying to fit all the boxes back into the basket every time. Some of the tea bags have labels on one side, so I kept them facing outward and easily recognizable. It all fit MUCH nicer. Hooray for organization revision!

Lately I’ve been looking for more excuses to hang my kitchen utensils so additional shelf space will be freed up. So far I’ve hung all of my commonly used spatulas, spoons, and tongs under a cabinet, and used some hooks to hang my measuring cups and spoons. With a few boxes full of screw hooks and removable 3M hooks it’s easy to find lots of new places for storing your kitchen wares.

After some brainstorming I came up with this back of the pantry door tea tree. I remembered buying these nice shiny magnetic clips for another project that never happened and I had a great magnetic strip that I wasn’t using which would work perfectly as the base to hang all the clips and baggies of tea.

After installation I noticed the whole thing clanged around a bit when opening or closing the pantry door. To fix this, I squished some removable putty behind the magnetic strip to give it some sticky cushioning. Now it holds tightly as the door moves and doesn’t make a sound.

Now the teas are visually accessible, allowing for easier selection, and they’re off the shelf so heavier things that are tougher to hang can have a place to sit.

Got any fun little kitchen organization hacks to share? I’d sure love to hear more great ideas.

One comment posted

  1. Posted by HonkyTonkFoodie - 08/26/2011

    Not exactly a hack, but I used these magnets to hold my pots on the side of the frig in my small kitchen. Freed up a lot of space! Also bought the mini versions, which held utensils and measuring cups on the other side. Very handy since I only had two drawers!

Subscribe to this entry's comments

Comments are closed for this entry.