Turn an unused coat closet into a pantry, and store 5 years of canned goods for maximum disaster preparedness!
Step 1: Find a likely candidate
Identify an underutilized closet near your kitchen.
We don't really wear coats here in the Bay Area, so our empty coat closet was a perfect candidate.
Step 2: Smash
Use your favorite crow bar to remove any existing closet infrastructure. Try not to make too many holes in the wall, as you'll have to patch them up later.
Step 3: Spackle
Fill all nail holes and ancillary smashes with spackle. If the holes are small use standard spackle, adding spackle in layers and being sure to firmly press it into the wall surface. For larger holes, use lightweight space-filling spackle or joint tape, then finish with standard spackle after the hole filler is allowed to dry.
Step 4: Sand and wash
After the spackle dries, give the area a light sanding.
Next wash the walls of the closet thoroughly to remove any residual dirt, and lightly sponge over the spackled areas to smooth them off and remove any residual sanding dust.
Step 5: Paint and shelf brackets
Paint the closet with one coat of primer and two coats of good quality paint.
Install shelf brackets or other support system. These are functional if ugly; we plan to cover the shelves with enough food that they won't be visible anyway.
Step 6: Cut shelves
Measure your closet and cut the shelving to fit. We did this after installing the brackets so we could accurately leave cutouts for the brackets, and fit the shelf snugly against the back wall of the closet.
Measure twice, cut once, and all of that. Then give the shelves a light sanding.