I wish I had some magical solution to tell you. Really I do. I have tried organizing my pantry here and there, bit by bit, and it just keeps getting further out of control. It pains me to even look at it sometimes. And adding more supplies into it after I go grocery shopping is a joke. Not to mention realizing I already have an item I went shopping for, because I couldn't find the original in the mess! It is so frustrating and a waste of money!
The ONLY truly effective way to re-organize a disaster area is to start over. Completely. You really need to remove everything from the space, give thought to what belongs there, decide what is the priority value of everything going back in, and remove what doesn't belong there at all.
Step 1: Commit to reorganizing the space.
Step 2: Take measurements. Purchase (or re-purpose from other areas of the house) the types of organizing tools that will work for you. Do you want clear containers that stack? For example, make sure two or more can stack within the height of your shelves. Would you prefer containers that you cannot see through? If so, how will you label them?
Step 3: Remove EVERYTHING from the area.
Step 4: Clean the area. Might as well scrub the floor, wash the base boards, and get into all the nooks and crannies you weren't doing properly when you couldn't even stand the sight of this space! The first thing I did after cleaning was to hang the broom and mop on the empty wall. They always fell down when I had them leaning against the shelves. This step alone lightened my mood! The fun part is coming soon!
Step 5: Decide the priority of what is going back inside the space. Either start with the back (low priority) or the front (high priority) and fill the space with the empty containers to make sure they will fit.
Step 6: Fill the containers! Bring everything back into the space THAT BELONGS IN THE SPACE. Try not to fool yourself. If you don't use it, put it somewhere else. If you can get rid of it, even better! Donate, recycle, re-use, or throw it out.
Step 7: Label! If you have a label maker, use it! If you have hanging tags (they sell them in office supply sections of most stores), use them! If you just have masking tape and a sharpie, use it! The space is aesthetically more pleasing labeled. And it will help anyone else using the space to keep it neat and tidy!
Step 8: Pack yourself on the back! You did it!