Spring Cleaning: Kitchen Organization with Thrifted Jars

Kitchen Organizing with Thrifted Jars

I have a confession to make. Although I love collecting kitchen gadgets at thrift stores, I hate cooking. The mess and the measuring completely exhaust me.  Luckily, my husband-to-be loves the process, so I don’t starve! But, to be fair, I’m trying to spend more time in the kitchen. To keep my stress level low, I thought a little Spring Cleaning kitchen organization was in order.

Row of kitchen jars

I knew that using second-hand jars would convert our cabinets and make them instantly feel more organized. So I headed to my local Goodwill. Happily, there were plenty of jars there in all shapes and sizes! Plus, by shopping at Goodwill, I am able to help build a stronger and more vibrant community. Once everything in our cabinets was transferred to its own jar, it was easier to find my way around the kitchen. I still wasn’t inspired to spend time there, though, so I started experimenting with color and labels, too.

Kitchen jars with chalkboard labels

For the jars that live on our countertops, I wanted a fun and fancy look.  If you often try new things, chalkboard paint is the perfect option for labeling since it can be updated easily.  To make these, draw a shape on thick paper and cut out the inside of it so it’s just a frame. Tape this to the front of your jar and paint inside the shape with chalkboard paint. I used two coats of paint. Make sure the label is fully dried before writing on it!

Jars with colorful labels

We tend to keep the same things in stock, so many of our labels can be more permanent. I’ve seen people use stickers before to label jars, but there are a couple of problems with that – one, the paper part of the sticker will come off when it’s washed. Two, if you ever want to remove the label entirely, the adhesive that remains on the jar after the paper part is gone will frustrate you beyond comprehension. I know this because some of the jars we got had stickers on them from a previous owner and it took me days to soak and scrape off all of that gunk! Packing tape, I’ve found, safeguards paper labels, comes off easily when you want it to, and doesn’t leave behind as much residue. For these labels I cut up magazine pages, labeled them, and stuck packing tape over to keep them on.

Jars with cloth tops

By this point the cabinets were organized and labeled, making it easy for me to find my way around, but I wanted more color to keep me inspired! If I’m going to be stuck in the kitchen, I at least need something nice to look at.  This is where my trusty thrifted fabric stash comes to the rescue once again!  I traced the lids of my mason jars on fabric, cut one and a half inches outside the circle, and fit the fabric over the flat lid, but under the screw top. Voila! Finally my kitchen is ready for me. Now the question is, how else can I put off cooking dinner?

xx, Julia