I've been promising for almost a year now to share these spaces we love in our new home with you. It's been slow-going, all the unpacking and organizing (and reorganizing, once I've realized the original setup isn't working, and sometimes reorganizing again still) amid the ebb and flow (and occasional chaos) of actual life. But slowly...slowly...things are coming together, finally.
When we were talking about buying a house—the house that eventually became this house—one of the big items on our wish list was a big kitchen pantry. You know the kind: original cabinets with glass doors, with enough space to hold all our dry goods and cans and extra pots and pans. (I had big dreams of being able to store all my kitchen things in the kitchen, instead of on the old Ikea shelves in the basement.)
This wasn't really a lofty dream. These old houses in Buffalo all seem to have pantries just like the one we dreamed of. We've just never lived in a house that had one.
This house has a closet with a built-in cabinet at the back of the dining room. The minute I saw it, I knew exactly how I would use it.
After storing so many "nonessentials"—all a matter of perspective, I say—in boxes in the basement of our little rental home in Connecticut, how wonderful is a space like this?
All my soapmaking supplies—fats and oils (and lye, way in the back and up high, safely out of reach of little hands) and a few repurposed wooden boxes for molds; my small collection of books on natural healing, cleaning, soapmaking, and dyeing; many, many tins and bottles and droppers and capsules (and a few jars of sample lotions); dye matter and mordants and things to dye (and things to dye them in); watercolors and painting boards; and way too much beeswax, in candle form and otherwise; and herbs—look at all those herbs!—all of it in one place, at my fingertips, ready to be used as mood or necessity strikes.
This might be my favorite space in the house, so far...