Essential kitchen storage ideas for the modern home

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Clever kitchen storage ideas are essential in the modern kitchen – the traditional heart of the home is no longer just a space for cooking but also for dining, entertaining, relaxing and family life. With so many demands on this room, the key to keeping a kitchen clutter free and easy to use – regardless of size – is well-considered storage. From counter-top storage and built-in cabinets to freestanding dressers and open shelving, there are plenty of smart ideas for practical and effective storage in small spaces and open-plan kitchens alike.

Choosing the right type of storage in a kitchen comes down to a series of factors. How big is your space? Is it a tiny kitchen or spacious and open-plan? Are the fittings and furniture shabby chic and country-style or modern, minimal design? Do you want all your cookware, utensils and plates hidden away or proudly on display? Before embarking on a kitchen renovation, take stock of your everyday kitchen kit so you know how much you need to store, and where best to place it.

A pantry or larder should be close to your fridge and freezer for instance, making it quick and easy to unload groceries. Likewise, in a dream kitchen scenario, china and cutlery should be stored near the dishwasher. It is usually a good idea to keep storage for glasses and frequently accessed items away from the main cooking area so as not to interrupt the cook while they’re creating a culinary masterpiece!

Smart cooks will be clever with their kitchen storage. Make the most of every inch of space – for example, the end of an island unit can be used to create feature shelves for your favourite cookbooks, while a rail along a stove splashback can be used to hang utensils,
kitchen roll holders, a knife block etc. Alternatively, consider creating a narrow cupboard beside your hob with sliding doors for easy access to bottles of oils, vinegars or spices while you cook. A plate rack can be useful and stylish, especially in a classic kitchen, while open shelves can be used to display special dishes or collection of striking cookware.

In small kitchens or apartments, be creative with your kitchen storage. Hang pan lids on the inside of doors, fit low-level drawers with plinths for plates, use slender spaces for wine storage and build in purpose-made fitted trays to keep essential cooking ingredients neat and tidy. We have plenty of inspiration for kitchen storage of all shapes and sizes across this gallery, so there’s no excuse not to get organised.

Reclaim your kitchen storageThe temptation to pack a kitchen with floor-to-ceiling storage can be really strong but, if you have a sizeable space or a streamlined selection of cookware and serveware, consider restricting your cabinetry to base units alone. This creates an airy, spacious feel. Here, dark handle-less wooden cabinets (which are reclaimed chemistry lab units) offer a striking contrast to the white walls for a minimal and clutter-free finish.

Image credit: Dominic Blackmore
Image credit: Colin Poole
Image credit: Colin Poole
Image credit: David Brittain
Image credit: Mark Scott
Image credit: Emma Lewis
Image credit: Richard Gadsby
Image credit: Alexander James
Image credit: Colin Poole
Image credit: Gwenan Murphy
Image credit: Robert Sanderson

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