Storage Stories

Americans tend to be acquisitive by nature. We love clothes, we love shoes, we love our stuff. Do we really need six pairs of jeans, fifteen pairs of shoes, two sets of dishes, and eighteen dish towels? No, we don’t, but for a variety of reasons, many of us are blessed to have more than we need. It’s very rare that I have a client tell me that they don’t want and need more storage- they typically ask for as much as they can get. Let’s take a look at some creative ways we can find and gain storage space in our homes.

The home office has become a necessity since the pandemic began, and I don’t think many of us will ever go back to the 9-5, Monday – Friday in office model. So, we’ve had to carve out spaces where we can work from home that are comfortable, private, and have everything we need to work efficiently. During the pandemic, for those of us with a guest room, that space often became the office. But what happens when we do need the space for a visit from Grandma, or our dear friends want to come for the weekend? One of the best solutions for this is a Murphy bed- they take up very little space when not in use, and are just as comfortable as a framed bed, as they avoid the support bar found in most sleeper sofas. Pre-fabricated Murphy bed units are an option, which just get attached to the wall for safety, or, a full wall of custom cabinetry that offers more storage and flexibility is also a great choice. That allows the units on either side of the bed to be used for a variety of purposes that can be tailored to your specific storage needs. This beautiful blue wall of built ins offers customized storage as well as a really cozy space for sleeping:

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This one is in a slightly more spacious office space, and again, offers great storage options, while the bed disappears when not in use. A Murphy bed is also be a good option in a space used for exercising at home- when it’s up, there’s plenty of floor space for yoga, stretching, weight lifting, or following along with an exercise video:

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Where are some other spots we can maximize storage opportunities? Under the stairs is often an underutilized location that can offer more space, and since stairs are typically near an entryway, can be a great spot for holding shoes, outdoor gear, and jackets:

Or, if the stairs are near the kitchen, you could capture some pantry or dish storage there:

The options are endless, can work in any space, from contemporary to traditional, and open storage can be really striking if you’re thoughtful about what’s kept there. Here, the baskets on the bottom shelf are a perfect catch all for shoes, and the rest of the space, punctuated by the graphic wallpaper, allows for a lovely display of art, books, and pictures:

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In the kitchen, there are lots of ways to utilize storage to keep your counters clutter free. Slim cabinetry slide out units can hold all sorts of things. Here, a slide out rack holds a variety of kitchen tools, dish towels, and supplies, while keeping them hidden from view:

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These slideouts hold a large spice collection, keeping it organized and easy to access:

Slideouts can also be used as a really efficient and easy to access way to hold a variety of baking trays, foil, and wrap.

Appliance garages (not the dated roll up ones from the eighties!) are making a comeback, too! They’re a great way to hide the small appliances that we’ve all become fond of. Many of us now have a slow cooker, and an instant pot, and an air fryer (LOVE MINE!), as well as a stand mixer, not to mention the coffee maker or electric kettle. Garages allow us to keep these items behind closed doors, minimizing visual clutter, but allowing for quick and easy access. The coffee station here sits behind a lift up door, makes it easy to get your coffee fix, and can then be closed up for a cleaner looking space:

This clever lift up door tucks the stand mixer behind it, which sits on a slide out shelf. Mixers are really heavy, and difficult to move, so this keeps it plugged in and easily accessible, with no need to drag it around for better access:

There are so many ways to maximize storage, gain utility, and allow your spaces to perform in a more efficient way. Your design team will work with you to help achieve the most efficient storage for your needs and your home, and can come up with some really creative and attractive ways to accomplish it!

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