August 29th, 2013
04:30 PM ET
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Editor's note: Welcome to CNN's Open House, an interactive, online tour of iReporters' houses that showcases incredible decor. Space by space, we'll feature beautiful design moments and learn from decorators' experience. Want to show off your decorating skills? Submit your photos to our iReport assignment!

A box of cereal or can of tomatoes is not usually a decorator's first choice to accessorize a kitchen. But when it comes to pantries, your sundries can be an unexpected element of decor.

A pantry is an extension of your kitchen, said Melanie Serra, an interior decorator, staging expert and instructor in Atlanta, Georgia.

"When you are entertaining, that is an area that people will still see, when you open your pantry to grab an appetizer or chips," she said.

Increasingly, it's a part of the kitchen that homeowners want to see. "In the '70s and '80s, you used to hide it behind closed doors," she said. But open shelving trends and the popularization of home staging has inspired courage for decorating food closets, she said.

"When you stage you should turn all your cans, making sure they are faced the same way and color coordinated. It adds a sense of order, Serra said. "People are so visual, they really want to see every space decorated so that (the entire home) flows."

But decorating with dry foods? It's a good idea, she said.

Read - The practicality of a beautiful pantry

Previously - National update your parents' spice rack month

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Filed under: iReport • Storage • Tools

soundoff (4 Responses)
  1. RC

    Open shelving is just tacky. I don't like clear/opaque cupboard or fridge doors either.

    August 30, 2013 at 5:34 pm |
  2. Pondering

    This is why open shelving is a nightmare. Don't do it unless you are comfortable living in an OCD world.

    August 30, 2013 at 7:54 am |
  3. Jdizzle McHammerpants ♫♫

    I think I have milk in my fridge that is so old it counts as a work of art, as well.

    August 29, 2013 at 5:23 pm |
  4. suj

    Bwaaahahaha. jeeze. Is this plagiarized from Martha Stuart Living magazine? Open shelving to show off your pantry? Color coordinate the cans?
    "When you stage"? As if all cameras are on you?
    No mention of how to manipulate the lights to accent the can labels and the depth of your pantry.
    Fashion over function highlights someone's cooking talents.

    August 29, 2013 at 5:07 pm |
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