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Your guide to kitchens, kitchen storage solutions, planning and design ideas, advice, suppliers, storage for kitchens

 

Kitchen Storage

 

 

When designing a kitchen, the struggle is a between storage space and work top space. You have to have both and the trick is find the ideal compromise.

It is very important at an early stage to clearly identify what you have to store in the kitchen as opposed to what could be moved elsewhere. It does not make sense to store items that do not actually have to be in the kitchen if there is somewhere else they could go. Forget what you have always done up to now, maybe you had no choice, be ruthless and move everything out of the kitchen that absolutely does not have to be there.

By reducing the amount you store in the kitchen to an absolute minimum you create an environment that has less bulky cupboards, more bench space and a lighter, airier feel. Think also about more efficient storage space. Try to avoid the old traditional corner pantry, which is not just ugly but also wasteful of space.

Think about drawers

Storage 200

Drawers are becoming more popular because they provide much better storage   opportunities. Traditionally drawers were just put in the kitchen for cutlery, utensils, place settings, napkins and the fiddly little thinks you accumulate. However, they are ideal for storing plates, mugs, saucepans and even food. Think about it. A traditional under-bench cupboard has only one shelf and a bottom. When you store plates, trays, dishes and pans you have to stack them up high on top of each other to make use of the space.

Then when you want to get anything out, especially from the back, you end up on your hands and knees, pulling stuff out so you can get to it and then having to put the remainder back. With drawers, not only do you get the equivalent of extra shelves but they pull out to you. No more piling stuff on top of other stuff, no more groveling on your knees. It’s better for your back also, not to have to stretch and reach with heavy items.

Pullout pantries are more popular because they can be so efficient, having multiple shelves of different and adjustable heights. They are also great because they pull out and you do not have to reach into the back of the cupboard behind stuff to find other stuff. They act like huge, multi-level drawers.

 

Plan clutter out

Have a storage space for everything and you can clear your bench tops of clutter. The kettle and toaster can go in an on-bench appliance garage for instance, ready to be pulled out when needed. Heavy items should be stored under the bench, even your food mixer can be stored in a drawer that is big enough, easy to get at and lift. Tins are an obvious choice for storage in drawers, which can be made of a size to suit standard cans. There are drawer pantries available that make access to dry goods so easy and convenient.

If you are a big wine lover you might wish to incorporate special wine shelves into your kitchen. On the other hand, why store wine in your kitchen. You probably do not drink much of it there, the odd bottle in the fridge maybe. Perhaps it is an example of something that could be stored elsewhere and free up kitchen space. Wine could go in the dining room, the garage or preferably the cellar!

Cutlery will be stored as near to the dishwasher as possible for quick storage after cleaning. Implements should be stored as near as possible to where you need them, the hob. Many people keep their cutting knives in a block on the benchtop but you could consider using a magnetic holder on the wall and clear a bit more of your bench and reduce the clutter

Vegetable Storage

Remember that veggies which do not need to be stored in the fridge do need to be cool, dry dark storage area. This means keeping them away from the oven and hob and also ensuring that air can circulate around them. An open cupboard with wire or wicker baskets is best but you can put a door on if you absolutely must.

Display items

Many people like to display items such as objets d’art, ornaments or cookery books. For these you can consider open shelving or glass fronted cabinets. This does raise the issue of efficient storage and clutter of course. Apart from the cookery books, does anything else really need to be in the kitchen? If you have plenty of room it is not an issue and a nice display cabinet could set the kitchen off but if space it at a premium perhaps those family treasures would be best displayed elsewhere.

Storage gadgets

Apart from pullout pantries and pantry drawer sets there are numerous gadgets that are supposed to help with ease and convenience. Of particular use might be corner shelving pullouts, which improve access to those awful blind corners where people traditional store the Xmas stuff and other things that are only used one in a blue moon. Most gadgets you will see in the showrooms are expensive though so should be considered with caution. Ask yourself if they really will help or if they just look good?

In summary, think of all the things you really must store in the kitchen, remove all the things that do not to be there and make a list. Ensure that the kitchen designer (if it is not to be you) has this list and so can ensure that there will be a space for everything

 

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