I’ve been pondering what to do with my spices. Quite the conundrum, eh? I have a lot of them due to an affinity for Indian cooking, and I love having them out in the open and accessible. Also, they look pretty. Okay, so this doesn’t look pretty…

Try to ignore the obvious to-dos in this picture- it's the only pic I could find of my jumbled mess of spice containers before. That's them in front of the brick chimney.

But spices in general look pretty. I considered tins, because they are adorable and keep out light, which can make your spices lose their freshness faster. But a lot of tins I found were a)expensive and/or b)not airtight. In my humble opinion I think being airtight trumps being opaque in matters of spice freshness, but then again I don’t really know anything so don’t quote me.

I found some cute matching jars at places like Ikea, but even they were a little pricey and the lids were cheap and not that airtight.

I didn’t really want a system like this,

because it doesn’t allow for growth and this spice family is always adopting new members. Aww.

I love this from organize.com, http://www.organize.com/stainless-steel-small-spice-board-13-piece-set-lipper-international.html , but I do not love its price tag. I have heard of DIY versions of it, which basically involve affixing your own magnets to the tins and buying a piece of sheet metal. Except I’m kinda running out of wall space… (it could be really cute on a fridge too though!).

Then Stanley the Manly came to the rescue with some half-pint Kerr jars- sweet! They do let light in, but they have an airtight seal and they just look oh so pretty like that. Aaaaaand they’re 12 for $8, versus $2-$3 each at other places. So, yeah.

The scrawled permanent marker is just temporary (ha ha) until I can get some cute labels. And I’ll probably want to get some sort of shelf so I don’t have to pick up a top one to get to a bottom one… or maybe not. We’ll see. It was a bonus that the newer Kerr jars have sleek silver lids instead of the brass ones, although I don’t mind those either. My kitchen was starting to feel a little too modern for the rest of the house, so I’ll have to try to bring back some of that cottage/bungalow charm with touches like this.

Oh and PS- the reason I need such large spice containers is because I shop for spices in bulk, the way everyone should. Really, here’s a well-kept secret- shop for your spices at an Asian or Indian store. A measly little container at the grocery store will cost you 4x as much as a very generously portioned amount at one of these stores. At least this is true in Salt Lake City, and I’m guessing it’s true in other places as well. They have exotic spices, but they also have fairly generic ones too, so it’s worth a lookie.

How do you guys store your spices? Any tips for mine?