It is the eternal problem that all architects encounter, whether they are designing residential buildings, such as apartments and houses, or industrial ones such as office suites or factories – how to incorporate sufficient storage facilities so that contemporary needs are satisfied. In many cases the architects don’t succeed entirely, and it takes an interior design plan and some clever ideas to make sure that homes and offices are fit for purpose when it comes to storage. If you are searching for solutions to make the most of your home storage, here are a few trade secrets that may just help you succeed.
Space limitations of modern homes
You might have noticed already that room sizes in contemporary apartments and houses seem to be shrinking year on year, while overall floor area in new residential buildings is doing the same. This is a trend that is both frustrating and difficult for many people as inevitably it means that built-in storage areas are also contracting. Families, in particular, suffer in these circumstances because with young children or teens in the household there is just so much more stuff to find a place for.
In a kitchen/dining area you could build in two storage cabinets either side of a window – say about 20 to 24 inches deep – and install a cushioned window seat or banquette between them. This would provide an ideal bench seat for when you’re eating and, with a hinged lid, the seat could also operate like an ottoman and provide even more storage.
In an apartment, when a living area has to double as a bedroom, you can cleverly divide the spaces using freestanding closets with sliding doors that face the bedroom – these become your wardrobes. You can then cover the back of the closets with fabric to enhance the design features of your living space or display your favorite wall artworks.
Children’s bedrooms can be a nightmare and besides instilling some good habits, such as putting away one toy before taking out the next, it’s important to make it easy for kids to tidy their things away. Opt for low-level toy boxes and drawers – under-bed storage can be useful here – and child-sized wardrobes for clothes they use frequently. A high level shelf is a great place to store things that are not often used – try color-coded boxes so that you can easily find winter clothes, hats and boots when summer comes to an end.
For adults, storage solutions for the bedroom can also be flexible, and using internal compartments in wardrobes and chests of drawers will help you stay organized so that you can find what you need quickly and easily.
Making the most of space means taking a critical look at what you’ve got and working out the best ways to make use of every corner and alcove, not forgetting the spaces above doors and below stairs and beds. Making the most of your home storage opportunities is both straightforward and extremely satisfying.