Investing in a bespoke kitchen that’s stunning on the outside can all be for nothing if it doesn’t function beautifully on the inside, too.
William Morris’s often repeated quote that you should “Have nothing in your house that you do not know to be useful, or believe to be beautiful” is as applicable to kitchens as it is any other space in the house. And while taking time to plan the insides of your cupboards may not be as exciting as selecting furniture colours, worktops and splash backs, it will definitely add the all-important useful to the beautiful.
With living space at a premium, the need for innovative storage solutions in every part of the home has never been greater, so incorporating clever storage solutions and making creative use of space can drastically improve the look and function of your kitchen as well as keeping everything neat and tidy.
It’s wise to think about the interiors of your cupboards and what you’ll need to store and where. Take a good look at your existing kitchen and an examination of its pitfalls should be a good place to start. Consider what is lacking in your current kitchen – have you run out of space for bulky items such as casserole dishes, pots and pans? Do you need a dedicated place for certain items such as deep drawers for your prized crockery collection or slim-line drawers for your cutlery? Carefully considered space-saving solutions such as drawers in your base cupboards, which increase the capacity of your room by up to half, particularly vital if your kitchen is on the compact size. Although fitted drawers and cupboards are more expensive than plain shelves, they will have a more than commensurate benefit to your finished kitchen.
Getting it right isn’t just about clever inserts and drawer solutions, though. It’s also about where you decide to store things in the kitchen. The right storage in the appropriate units and areas means your cabinets will have specific functions and can then be positioned in the most logical areas – for instance pan drawers below the oven, cutlery and china drawers situated next to the dishwasher and larder units for dry goods next to your prep area will all help to make a kitchen function more efficiently. Equally, think about how often you use bake-ware and appliances and ensure that those things you make use of most are close at hand, while things that only come out at Christmas, or get used once in a blue moon, are stored in those places that are harder to access – for instance in high wall units.
In open-plan rooms with a central island dividing the living and dining areas, allocate cupboard space on the dining side for crockery and glasses so you don’t have to walk from one end of the room to the other when laying the table.
Once you’ve decided just where everything will sit, then think about the design of the interiors. There’s something undeniably satisfying about opening a drawer and finding everything in its right place so consider carefully the interior styling of your cabinets and it’ll be as equally beautiful in the inside as it is on the outside.
STORE TO ADD ORDER:
Larders are a great way to keep all your dry goods in one place. A single door concealing floor-to-ceiling pull-out wooden drawer boxes will give maximum flexibility in a small room. Alternatively, a free-standing Pantry Larder or built-in larder with a beautifully kitted out interior, including spice racks, drawers and wicker baskets, is an excellent one-stop storage solution. They’ll also work as a handy breakfast station with space to store cereals as well as a coffee machine that can be hidden behind closed doors when not in use.
If you’re used to stacking plates in wall cupboards then placing them in low drawers may seem strange at first. Wooden adjustable pegs mean that whatever size your plates and bowls they’ll be secured in the drawer preventing them from knocking against each other and chipping when the drawer is opened.
Keep much-used small appliances such as blenders, coffee makers and toasters handy but out of sight by installing a tambour-fronted unit that sits on your worktop. Roll the top up when you want to use something, roll it down when you want to keep worksurfaces neat and tidy.
Corners are a particularly under-utilised part of any kitchen design. Simply adding a carousel or Le Mans kidney-shaped pull-out will make reaching into the backs of cupboards a thing of the past. If your kitchen is u-shaped and runs around two corners, just adding specialised storage options into them could help you gain the equivalent space of a 1,200mm base unit. Suitable for anything from dried goods to pots and pans, non-slip shelves will ensure the contents don’t move about and fall over when the unit is pulled out.
Bespoke cabinetry is a great way to achieve exactly the combination of interior solutions to suit your way of life. This drawer, sited below a hob, has spice jars cleverly arranged so you can spot at a glance what’s what, while the second half is split into compartments for utensils making them easy to access when you’re cooking.
Don't hesitate to visit one of our showrooms to see some of our handmade storage solutions first-hand, or call us on 0800 389 6938 to discuss your requirements with one of our design experts.