A Vintage Card Catalog In The Kitchen For Spices & Spoons

Inquiring minds wanna know what John and I exchanged for V-day so we’re here to spill the beans- er conversation hearts. I found this great vintage metal card catalog at a local thrift shop for $5 (well, originally $6 but I’m an infamous haggler) and instantly fell in love with the gray-green color and the steel drawer pulls. John’s the resident chef in our house, so I knew using it to add function and style to the kitchen would please him to no end. And the fact that he once worked at a library (and his mom has for decades) ensured that he’d love the card catalog reference.


I knew the moody sea green tone would look fab in our greeny-blue-gray kitch, so I immediately brainstormed a few ideas on the way to the checkout. I could rewrite all of John’s favorite recipes on cards and catalog them in the drawers (organized by ingredients or meal). Or we could use it as a bread box (the drawers perfectly fit a loaf each) and even as a utensil caddy for our plethora of spoons and spatulas.


But when I got it up on the counter at home another use instantly became clear- why not use one of the drawers for spice storage? I placed all of our spices into the drawer and voila: a spice drawer was born. And thanks to the addition of a few labels on top of each container, it’s easy to locate any spice from above when you pull out the drawer. Because the drawers are both pretty deep, I actually could fit all our spices into one drawer, which freed up the second drawer for spoon and spatula storage. Sweet.


And sure enough, John was tickled pink about his V-day gift. He loves the extra storage space and of course the awesome vintage-industrial vibe that it adds to the room. And one of his favorite things about the V-day box is an old-school label which reveals that it hails from New York- which happens to be super meaningful since it’s where we met and fell in love.


So what did you guys get and give? Do tell. And stay tuned for John’s gift to me later in the day…

Looking for more spice storage ideas? Check out this great suggestion from Door Sixteen. Amazing!


  1. says

    That is such a great idea! Very unique and creative – plus, I love that is has meaning to it. Oh, and guess what? My husband and I met and fell in love in New York, too! :)

  2. says

    Now that is one v-day gift that is completely personal – the library reference, the new york location, the fact that John is the cook – and that it is totally manly way to incorporate storage into your kitch – never thought I would say this but I am in love with your card catalog :)

  3. says

    For v-day we went to a concert in Columbia, MO and while walking to our car at 1230 am, hungry, we saw the sign for “Hot Box Cookies” (link: http://www.hotboxcookies.com/)

    They basically take some dough, mix in whatever you want, and bake it in 10 min so you leave with 6 freshly baked cookies. (The cookie turned out to not be amazing, but it was warm and gooey.)

    When I first saw your title, I thought that you had gone there too!!

  4. says

    What a great deal. I can’t believe it was only 5 bucks! That’s amazing. I love the story behind it, I love the look of it, I love everything about it.

    What a sweet Valentine’s day gift.

  5. says

    Awesome idea and an amazing price! Only $5; I am jealous! I find drawers like this all the time, but have never found them for that price and am never sure what to do with them.

  6. Courtney says

    That is a great touch to the kitchen! Love it!

    My boyfriend knows that I’m not like every other woman who loves chocolate. I actually hate it. So, he bought me a box of chocolates, but removed all the chocolate and filled the little holes with different flavored sunflower seeds. (Which I’m addicted to) He is so creative. :) It was a simple and silly gift, but it meant so much because it was so thoughtful. :)

  7. Vanja says

    What a great find and thoughtful gift! I’m a trained librarian but never actually worked in a library, still would love to have this card catalog. Love the color as well.

  8. says

    Ok seriously this is getting a tad crazy! ahhaa Our decorating styles are so similar. Once again you post about an item you have and we have it too, and in the same room of the house! LOL Hubby and I found our metal card catalog last year at the local restore for like $7.00. We love it and use it for our recipe collection. :) Here is a picture of ours on my flickr:


    Glad you guys had a great Valentines day! Love the story of the rhino! :)

    • YoungHouseLove says

      That is too funny Kelly! I guess great minds think alike (and use metal card catalogs in the kitch). Thanks so much for the link. Yummy.


  9. says

    What a great idea. I just saw one of these at the surplus place on the campus that I work at and it was only 3.00. I may have to copy this idea if its still there when I get back. My hubby gave me a tripod for my new SLR camera and I treated him to dinner at his favorite Japanese steak house.