Storage Star ~ DIY Spice Blocks


So last week I posted about how I finally got my spice overflow organized.  A reader named Kathy kindly emailed me after that with a picture of the clever way she and her husband came up with to keep their spices organized.  I thought it was so brilliant that I asked if I could share it with you all.  I’m so happy she said yes because this is awesome!!

Look how pretty!

My questions to Kathy:

1. How did you come up with this idea for your spices?

I came up with the idea because I wanted to have a good way of accessing the spices as I use them. I was constantly fighting with my spice cupboard and had a hard time finding what I needed. My husband is a skilled woodworker, so I knew that all I had to do is dream it, and he can make it happen. We brainstormed for a while before coming up with the final design.

2. Did you make them yourselves? How long did it take you to make each one?

Yes, they are actually a simple design. We found the blocks of laminated wood (Poplar) at Lowes in 3 ft. lengths. My husband cut it to size, used a Forstner bit to drill out the holes to fit the spice bottles (The bottles were 99 cents each from Bed Bath & Beyond), & rounded the edges of the wood with a router. We made them to custom fit my cabinet with 5 spices per block. I have capability of 60 spices (about 50 are filled now, so there is room for expansion.) I chose the colors to match my kitchen; of course any combination of colors would work. I found the little wood letters at Michaels.

We worked on them off and on for a couple weeks, including the sanding, paint, clearcoat, etc.

3. How do you know where the spices you need are?

We use an index sheet that you see on the inside of the cupboard door.  The spices are grouped how I would use them. Block A has my cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, etc. If I am making an apple pie, I grab that block and put it on the counter. To make spaghetti, I would probably choose Block L, etc. I may decide to change them around a bit as I use them more. It sounds like I am a lot like you…keep working on it until it’s perfect! 🙂

4. What do you do if you have more spices than space?

I have capability of 60 spices (about 50 are filled now, so there is room for expansion.) The nice thing is that you can have as many “blox” as you need or have the space for. All 60 spices fit in an area which is 10.5 inches high x 17 inches wide and 11 inches deep on 2 shelves.


Isn’t that clever?  Creative people always astound me because I feel like I am so not one of them.  But to see all the spices lined up like that, well it just looks so orderly.  Gosh I love orderly, it puts a smile on my face that is for sure!

Thanks for sharing this with us today Kathy!  You are a Storage Star!!

Have you DIY’d anything lately to help you get organized?

Linking up: A Bowl Full of Lemons

Filed under: Containerizing, Kitchen, Storage Star


10 Responses to Storage Star ~ DIY Spice Blocks

  1. 1
    Kristina says

    That is really neat. Can i borrow her husband? LOL

  2. 2
    Susan says

    Cool! You could probably do something similar with the small plastic bins. I would have a hard time figuring out the groupings though because some spices are used in totally different kinds of recipes. Nevertheless, if you don’t get hung up on the decision making, it’s a great idea!

  3. 3
    Andrea says

    How neat!!! I’ll be second to borrow her husband, pleeeaassse. I’ve been trying to come up with something for a while to store my spices. Right now I have them on a turn table in the cupboard but I find I’m wasting space. HMMMM. Still thinking…….

  4. 5
    Kazzie says

    Excellent! love it! 🙂

  5. 6
    Amy says

    That is so cool!

  6. 7
    Courtney says

    What a talented couple and what a clever idea!!! Love the idea of grouping them together.

  7. 8
    Rachel says

    I love the way it looks. At first I thought the spices were organized alphabetically, which would work for me as well. Love the idea.


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