Transforming a Party Closet

I was blessed in this house to have this amazing storage closet or pantry. The thing is, it had burgundy walls and unfinished wood shelves. Now, the shelves were incredibly sturdy and well built, so it did have that going for it.

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Over time, as I picked up a set of dishes here or a set of chargers there, I just added them to the pantry. I stacked up the plates, the placemats, the chargers and whatever. This photo is actually after I started taking things out, it had been even worse than this.

The first step was to take absolutely everything out of the closet and clean the space. The shelves were wiped down and the floor and baseboards were cleaned.

The next step was to to get out my Frog Tape and tape of the baseboards and tape some brown paper on the floor to protect it while I was painting. Note that because I was working in a small space before emptying the space my husband helped by taking the door off of the pantry. That made the whole job so much more easier.

When painting raw wood, and over a dark color like this, you really want to begin with a good primer. I first painted the ceiling, with bright white ceiling paint and then started in on the walls and the shelves with my primer.

I made sure I painted the underside of the shelves so they will look crisp and clean when the pantry is finished. This is just the primer coat on the walls and shelves here.


Of course, while the pantry was empty, that meant my kitchen was overwhelmed with all of the things that came out of that pantry!

…and it is finished!! Time to load it up with all of those dishes! The bright white is such a wonderful change. It will be so much easier to find things in here!

This is the liner I am using this on the shelves and I HIGHLY recommend it. I got this from The Container Store. It comes in a variety of widths including this 12″ width which is perfect for my shelves!

One of the challenges I have is how to store my chargers. I don’t like to stack them and have to shuffle through the stacks to find the ones I want when styling a table. After lots of research, this is what I came up with, also from The Container Store.

You can see how easily those set right on my shelf and hold my chargers so I can access what I need without digging through all of them.

Just as I do not want to dig through chargers, I certainly do not want to dig through stacks of dishes. Chrome cupboard shelves are the perfect answer. These are great for keeping dinner plates beneath and salad plates above. I filled two shelves with dishes using these and have decided that I will not make room for any more. IF I decide I just HAVE to have some new dishes, I will get rid of some that I already have.

The door has been put back on the pantry, all of the dishes, the chargers, appliances, the serving pieces and decorative pieces have their own places and I find such joy just opening the door on my transformed dish pantry!

Shop my party closet favorites:

Chrome Cupboard Shelf – The Container Store
Easy Liner – The Container Store
Chrome Cookware Organizer – The Container Store

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  1. Wow I love it! What a transformation and it was fun to sneak a peek at your dishes. White really makes everything look so fresh and clean doesn’t it? I can’t wait to see them in person!

  2. Chloe, what an inspiration! I am going to use the lid holder idea for my chargers. How lucky you are to have that closet. If I traded my hot water heater for a wall hung one, I could have a closet but it would not be as nice as yours.

  3. Chloe, there’s nothing like a fresh coat of paint to brighten a space. I love the charger organizer. If I had a closet like this, I’d be ordering one right now. I know you’ll enjoy!

  4. Wow. I love that big panty and so much nicer with white paint. Great job.
    One of the things I do particularly with glass bowls, is put some felt between them. The other is (don’t tell) is when you are in Dollar Tree they have those thin white foam sheets laying everywhere, ask for them because they are thrown away.
    I love the container store in this area. They have everything.

  5. I love organization and that looks great, Chloe! The charger holders is a splendid idea! I hate digging through those too. I use the shelf stackers for dishes also, but find the vinyl coated ones keep the dishes from sliding. I like how you say IF you just HAVE to have some new dishes. Duh!

  6. Oh I love this Chloe. Its beautiful and so enviable, especially the charger storage. I agree – its a pain to have to dig through them to find what you are looking for. Mine are stored in the garage, and because the shelves are open, they are all covered in bags. And the ones I want always seem to be on the bottom lol. Makes me think that I could store them in the upright containers like you did, and then cover the whole shelving unit with something transparent. Hmmm. Food for thought. Thanks for the great inspiration as always! I’m going to subscribe so I don’t miss any more great posts!

    1. Thank you so much Sandra! I have been at this for several years now, so I have over 1,000 posts, so go ahead and have a look! I hope you subscribed so you never miss a new post!

      1. Hi chloe my name Is holly I am brand new at DIY projects all together and I can’t wait to follow you and see all of your beautiful work and ideas ,i do have a question, i have a smaller pantry ,but it’s also a walk in pantry / closet, we actually call it the Harry Potter closet or pantry. Because unfortunately it is underneath a set of stairs so the wall is slanted so we have to kinda bend to one side ,my question is do u recommend anything to make it easier for me to have access to everything in there ,lately the kids seem to just throw everything in there and it’s a mess ,I do have 2 shelves in there but i need to organize this asap its bothering me that much lol any help would be appreciated, as i see your the best at this kind of stuff . I look forward to seeing all the projects u post . Thank you for your time

        1. I would just build in solid shelves that can hold the weight of whatever you want them to hold. Perhaps on one wall you can just put a lot of hooks so your kids can hang things on that wall. I would start by taking EVERYTHING out. Then it is time to get REALLY HONEST. What do you never use? Those are the things to get rid of. Sell it, donate it or toss it. Does it belong someplace else in the house, then move it there. Those steps will make it much easier to organize that pantry/closet! Good luck, and reach out again, should you need to!!

          1. Thank you SO much Holly! You have no idea how happy it makes me to hear from my readers! PLEASE let me know if there are things you want me to cover here at Celebrate & Decorate!

    1. I am so sorry you aren’t making this trip, because what a difference my new organization has made when trying to pick out dishes, chargers, and placemats to style tables!

  7. Chloe, your pantry is fabulous! How I wish I had a pantry like yours. The chargers stacked on the lid holders are a great idea. So nice your bottom shelf was that deep.
    I love your newsletter. Thanks for the links to good posts even though I don’t need any more blogs to follow since I can’t keep up as it is. I’m not being negative -just telling it like it is.

    1. Oh thank you SO much Bonnie, when I saw that I just knew this was the house we would be buying! I still have a problem with placemat storage, because the shelves just are not quite deep enough for that. We have a fabulous carpenter who does beautiful work. We have a cheap bookcase that could easily be replaced and have decided we are going to have him build something custom to just hold linens and placemats!

      Thanks for you comments on the newsletter, I think I will shoot for once a month or six weeks. I do not live such an exciting life that I need to publish a newsletter every week like so many bloggers are doing now. I certainly understand about following so many blogs. I tried to just share a few projects and posts that are similar to what I feature here on Celebrate & Decorate to share the love. I will try to remember to share one of your beautiful tablescapes next time!

      Thanks again for the feedback! It is always helpful to know what readers want!

      1. I was wondering how you store and organize your linens – I have tablecloths hanging in a closet and placemats and napkins in a drawer in an antique sugar chest. Although it serves the purpose, it’s not as convenient as I’d like. You’ve given me inspiration to find a better way now, Chloe. Thanks!

        1. Thank you so much Jean! I do keep my tablecloths hanging also. I have a tall cabinet where the napkins are stored and currently there are a couple of shelves in a closet that are large enough to store my placemats. It is not as convenient as I would like, either. I plan to have a piece of furniture custom built to store my napkins and placemats. I just haven’t found anything that works like I want it to.

  8. This post answered a question I’ve had for quite a while, so thank you for showing us your dish pantry organization. It turned out very nice!

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