13 Creative Ways to Store Your Pots + Pans
Dealing with a cluttered and disorganized kitchen is undeniably frustrating. You often have to brace yourself at the thought of cooking, with a gentle reminder to clean up after yourself as you go. The good news is that no matter how small your space, you can make it super functional by creating kitchen storage hacks for those bulky pots and pans. A well done pot rack packs a powerful punch, no matter your decor style. Conquer your storage issues with these 13 ways to creatively take your kitchen from a disaster zone to organized, luxe living.
1. Window Art: When you’re out of cabinet or drawer space, it’s time to think vertically. Hanging pots and pans in a window doesn’t take away valuable wall space, and it adds a special flair to your kitchen window. (via Julia Brenner)
2. Copper Ladder Storage: Harness your crafting powers by creating your own unique ladder for your pots and pans. Copper brightens a space with its warm metallic shine, and the rustic wood adds depth. (via Monsterscircus)
3. Racks on Racks: Functionality in a kitchen is top priority. Although you may not have a large wall to hang pots and pans, you can use smaller chunks of space with shorter pipes to hold your kitchenware. “S” hooks are ideal to use so you can easily hook and unhook items, even if they’re hung higher up. (via Andrea Sparacio)
4. Chalk It Up to Good Storage: Bring your space-saving wall to life with chalkboard paint. Stainless steel or brushed chrome rods will pop against a chalkboard wall, and you can write quotes, recipes or draw fun pictures on the chalkboard paint. (Photo via Daniel Mahon / Design Sponge)
5. Function on Wheels: This little beaut of a cart takes your kitchen from drab to chic, along with providing you with some extra storage. Keep your smaller pots and kitchen items on wheels so you have all of your necessities at hand, no matter where you are in the kitchen. (via Love by Serena / Style Me Pretty)
6. Top Shelf: Stack your goods by using a shelf and rod combination where they’re still within reach. Knickknacks and posters can dress up your kitchen collection, making your hanging pots and pans look less utilitarian and more in vogue. (Photo via Esther Sun Photography / Style Me Pretty)
7. Crystal Clear: Living in a small space doesn’t limit your creativity — it forces you to think outside the box. Clear shelving units allow you to showcase your beautiful kitchenware while making your space feel lighter and more airy. (via Lesley Colvin / The Kitchn)
8. Perfectly Pegged: Nail your style right on the head by DIYing your own peg board. Pick your color and paint your way to an organized kitchen for cheap. This storage idea is perfect if you ever want to change up the configuration for how you organize too. (via Design Sponge)
9. Throw in the Towel: If your wall space is sparse but you have an open cabinet side, you can cook up something spectacular in your kitchen in only a few minutes. With one bathroom towel bar repurposed for your pots and pans, your items will be at hand whenever they’re needed. (via The 2 Seasons)
10. Nature Welcomes You: Wood accents bring a rustic feel without being too country. Instead of clear or metal shelves, try a solid wood, like pine. Take it to the ceiling and add stain or paint to create your perfect style. (Photo via Eve Wilson / The Design Files)
11. Put a Lid on It: No more opening your cabinet only to have lids tumbling out left and right. With the addition of a simple wooden peg rack, lids will sit upright at attention, waiting patiently for when you call them to service. (via Martha Stewart)
12. Cooking Up Romance: Bring your kitchen dreams to reality with this white-on-white kitchen décor. White or cream shelving in this Parisian apartment creates an enchanting atmosphere. (Photo via Marissa Cox / The Everygirl)
13. Thinking Sideways: Even if you only have one kitchen cabinet to spare, you can free up valuable shelf space with a lid organizer. Arrange all of your lids in an upright row so you can easily track them down when you need them. (via The Kitchn)
Feel like you’ve mastered the art of wrangling your pots and pans? Find us on Pinterest to find even more ways to organize a tiny kitchen.
This Jewelry Designer Infuses ‘90s Hip Hop, Caribbean Spice + Vibrant Hues into Everything She Makes
This Jewelry Designer Infuses '90s Hip Hop, Caribbean Spice + Vibrant Hues into Everything She Makes
Vibrant hues, '90s-era boldness, and raw artisanal beauty — these are just a few of the characteristics that make the work of today's creative crush truly swoonworthy. Named for a potent Caribbean pepper, Tracey-Renee Hubbard's Scotchbonnet is a gorgeous line of earrings and accessories made by hand with love, thoughtfulness and a resolute passion for the art of making.
Anjelika Temple here, co-founder of Brit + Co and super fan of Scotchbonnet! Like so many creative connections these days, I first connected with designer Tracey-Renee when she DM'ed the @britandco IG account and we featured her work in a story roundup of BIPOC makers. A few weeks later, she applied and won a scholarship to our first session of the Selfmade program where Brit and I both had the privilege of mentoring and working with Tracey-Renee on her brand, her business plan, and her mission. Since then she's been awarded a minority creative grant from JOANN Fabrics, and seriously upleveled her production process thanks to a collaboration with Glowforge. (PS: B+C readers can get 20% off their own Glowforge Pro by clicking here!)
Now I am thrilled to be able to share more about this brilliant maker's journey, inspiration and creative process in this edition of Creative Crushin'.
Anjelika Temple: Before we get into learning all about your creative inspiration, tell us a little about your background.
Tracey-Renee Hubbard: I was born and raised in Wisconsin. Yep, lots of cheese and cows. Growing up in Wisconsin right outside of Milwaukee provided me with a surprisingly diverse and eclectic foundation. My parents stressed the importance of academics, but they didn't believe that excelling at school needed to come at the expense of creativity or other hobbies. Art, music, books and softball were a big chunk of my childhood. Crafting and creating have been a part of my life for as long as I can remember.
One of my favorite shows to watch when I was growing up was "A Different World." It was about the college experience at a fictitious HBCU (Historically Black College/University) called Hillman College. Watching that show inspired me to go to Florida A&M University (an HBCU) where I received a BS in Business Management and an MBA.
The world changes quickly and I love learning new things! After completing my MBA program, I studied graphic design, multimedia art and completed the Merchandise Product Development program at FIDM (Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising) in San Francisco. My academic and professional experiences have given me the opportunity to live and work in lots of interesting places; but for now I am based in the San Francisco Bay area.
Anj: Did you always know that you wanted to be a professional artist/creative?
Tracey-Renee: Yep, but for a long time I was afraid to do it because of the "starving artist" stigma (all lies, btw). I tried to compartmentalize my creative practices as just a "hobby", but when something is truly in your spirit the desire never really goes away…and so now here I am!
Anj: What do you love about making things? What keeps the spark going for you?
Tracey-Renee: I've been inspired to create for as long as I can remember! I've always been fascinated by color, texture, travel and cultural connection. I grew up watching my grandmother quilt, sew and mend garments, I saw my Mom create beautiful home décor and heirloom holiday decorations and spent time in my Dad's workshop. Being surrounded by unique handmade items that hold special stories has fueled my passion for being a designer and maker.
Anj: Like so many artists, you've got a day job in addition to your creative hustle. Tell us about your career path.
Tracey-Renee: My first "real job" was in pharmaceutical sales and marketing. I loved the left brain/right brain mix of processing all the data and scientific information and then finding creative ways to relay that information to doctors and health care providers. That role really opened my eyes to the power of messaging and visual communication tools which ultimately led to me returning to school to study digital design and multimedia arts. I've had fun using my marketing and digital design skills in several different industries. I currently work as the Director of Marketing and Creative Strategy for a candy company. I spend a lot of time working in the digital realm – I think most of us do- and that makes me really appreciate the time I spend making handmade jewelry for Scotchbonnet.
Anj: Tell me more about your brand Scotchbonnet! How would you describe your brand's mission?
Tracey-Renee: I want to make pieces that are cherished - special but not so "precious" that they sit in a box stored away for special occasions that are far and few between. My accessories are known for their bold shapes, bright colors and eye-catching patterns. Each piece is handmade with love (I hope my customers can feel it when they wear their Scotchbonnet accessories)!
Scotchbonnet jewelry has been described as "conversation starters" and I love the fact that they connect people and get them to start conversing. I am excited about elevating those conversations by creating capsule collections connected to social causes; that way the chat can go beyond just "cute earrings, where'd you get them?"
Anj: At Brit + Co, we are enamored with bright colors, patterns and geometric shapes -- and clearly, you are too! How did you hone in on your aesthetic?
Tracey-Renee: I chose the name Scotchbonnet for my jewelry brand because scotch bonnet peppers add a distinctively potent spice to Caribbean food and I feel that my jewelry has the same vibe. My accessories are known for vibrant hues, bold shapes and eye-catching patterns. I am inspired by the flashiness of 90s hip-hop, the simplicity of modern luxury, and the raw beauty of artisan goods from the African Diaspora. My aesthetic continues to evolve based on the things I love, the places I've been and the community I want to serve.
Anj: We LOVED mentoring you + helping your business grow during our first Selfmade session. What were your main takeaways from the program and experience?
Tracey-Renee: Selfmade helped me understand the importance of having a clear vision and trusting my intuition. It can be inspirational watching other entrepreneurs "hustling and winning" on their social media feeds, but without clarity about my vision that "inspiration" can be overwhelming and make things confusing. It's easy to confuse movement with progress – Selfmade helped me craft an action plan that ensures each step builds momentum and accelerates me toward my goals. Selfmade also provided me with a vibrant, uplifting community of founders, entrepreneurs and go-getters.
Anj: When you get creatively blocked or burnt out, how do you reset? Do you have tips you can share?
Tracey-Renee: I take a break. We're inundated with "hustle culture" that can make us feel guilty for taking a break, but at the end of the day we're of no value to anyone when we're burnt out. When I have a creative block I usually log off for a while… there's this duality with the internet where on the surface it seems to be an endless pool of inspiration, but in reality everything that's on the internet has already been filtered or curated by someone else. Sometimes it's helpful to see things through a new lens and find inspiration in ("real" physical) books, at a museum or out in nature. Seeing things in a new light from a different angle can be a really refreshing creative jolt.
Anj: What does your workspace look like? What tools do you use and how has it changed over the years?
Tracey-Renee: I'd describe it as "choreographed chaos". It's organized enough so that I can be efficient with the administrative parts of my business like: inventory management, packing and shipping. It's creative enough so that it still feels inspiring, and it's tidy enough that it doesn't feel overwhelming to sit down and start working. It smells like coconut or tropical fruit (thanks to my candles) and it sounds like hip-hop, dance hall, soca or afrobeats.
The primary mediums I work with are wood, paint, glass beads and recently brass. With that being said my paint brushes, needle & thread and jeweler's saw are always within close reach. The most recent addition to my studio is my Glowforge Pro 3D laser printer; it is a game changer! It shrunk my product development cycle time infinitely. Prior to the Glowforge the process was time consuming and costly; now, I can literally "print" a new design within minutes of sketching out an idea. It's also been awesome when it comes to inventory management and sustainability. I no longer have to worry about over-producing or wasting materials; I can make exactly what I need right when I need it without any waste. The Glowforge can make millions of things and I'm excited about trying new design ideas in the future. I have a ton of sketches and inspo photos on my magnet board and in my notebooks waiting to be explored. (ICYMI: B+C readers can get 20% off their own Glowforge Pro by clicking here!)
Anj: What advice do you have for emerging artists and designers just getting started? What advice do you have for creatives struggling to find their unique voice?
Tracey-Renee: Start with your "why" and not your "what". Your "why" will be the secret weapon that competitors will never be able to touch. Once you have that part figured out; dive in! I think that now is a really exciting time for creatives. The rise of entrepreneurship powered by social media has removed a lot of barriers that used to make creative careers seem out of reach. Protect your work, but don't be afraid to put yourself (and your stuff!) out there. Connect with other artists and build a community, it's so important to have a sounding board for difficult times and a crew with whom you can celebrate your successes.
Anj: What's next for your brand?
Tracey-Renee: Scaling and growing in a way that feels authentic. I have new colors and new products coming soon and I am super excited about that! My upcoming premium capsule collections are close to my heart; designing jewelry inspired by social causes and having a "give back" component means the world to me. I want to keep having fun with my brand, sharing joy with fun colors and patterns and infusing love into each handmade piece.