Kitchen storage: The latest innovations for a super-organised space

KitchensFeatures Wed 4th Jan 2023 by Lisa Hibberd

Kitchen storage: The latest innovations for a super-organised space

Kitchen storage: The latest innovations for a super-organised space

Feature by Lisa Hibberd | Wed 4th Jan 2023

Lisa has a background in working on consumer titles, and as the former associate editor of Your Home magazine, over 15 years' experience writing about kitchens and bathrooms. She now works as a freelance, contributing to both consumer and B2B platforms. More

With consumer lifestyles more hectic than ever, along with the rise of social media posts documenting highly organised homes, kitchen storage has had to up its game. Lisa Hibberd explores the options available to designers, from impressive larder units to clever internal drawer solutions.

"In these days of ever smaller homes, combined with increasing gadgets aimed at making life easier, there is huge demand for storage space that is organised so that all contents can be easily seen and accessed," says Amanda Hughes, ergonomics expert at Blum. "There is nothing worse than having to empty the entire contents of a cupboard or drawer to find that elusive saucepan lid or USB lead. In terms of innovations in storage it’s all about wider, deeper and higher. Getting additional usable space can achieve an enormous amount of extra storage. A single 1,200mm drawer gives 15% extra space over two 600mm drawers. Base unit drawers are so much easier to use than cupboards and fixed shelves, and with Blum runners, consumers can rest assured that the drawer won’t bow or break."

Perfect for organising everything from cutlery and utensils to pots, pans, bottles and chopping boards, Blum’s ORGA-LINE is a high-quality stainless steel inner dividing system that can be used within drawers and high-fronted pull-outs. Users can see what’s inside at a glance with quick and easy access

The new BLANCO UNIT offers designers the opportunity to create a space and time-saving hub in the heart of a kitchen. Clients can select from a choice of sinks, taps, storage and waste management solutions for a multi-functional area to fit their lifestyle

"In recent years, we’ve spent much more time in our homes and as a result, our kitchens in particular have become more multi-functional," suggests Adeline Baker, category manager at Häfele UK. "Our research of 2,000 homeowners found that many are using the space for purposes other than cooking. An estimated 4.55million homeowners (26%) use their kitchens for socialising and entertaining, 2.8million (16%) use the room to relax in, and 1.9million people (11%) use it as a playroom or homework area for children. The data also shows 1.75million homeowners (10%) use the kitchen as a makeshift office when working from home.

"With kitchens serving multiple purposes, spaces need to be organised and clutter-free, hence the rise in demand for being able to ‘shut off’ an area or keep items out for view. From a product perspective, it’s all about solutions that help maximise every millimetre of potential kitchen storage. Our pioneering hingeless flap fitting, Free space, is one such product as it creates more storage room within cabinetry by eliminating the need for large cover caps. It also has an internal installation depth of only 63mm. Likewise, Matrix Box A from our Matrix range of drawer systems has a thin walled design for more usable space while still maintaining a load bearing capacity of 30kg."

Thin-walled drawer systems, such as the Matrix Box range from Häfele, present more usable space within the drawer due to their slim design

Tambour units offer a lot of flexibility for organised storage – homeowners can have items within easy reach and then tidy them away easily, creating neat design lines and keeping the worksurface clutter-free. Pronorm has recently introduced a range of sizes in a tactile matt black finish which, when designed as a bank of units, creates a very stylish aesthetic

"Good quality, ergonomic and efficient storage has become increasingly important to consumers when planning a kitchen design," reports Neil Taggart, marketing manager at TKC. "Accelerated by the pandemic when there was a shift towards shopping less frequently and planning and storing foodstuffs, demand has continued with people recognising the benefits of organisation and practicality. More and more, consumers like to be a ‘home chef’ and a larder or pantry offers plenty of storage functionality while also making an eye-catching design statement. Customer reaction to our new Butler’s Pantry has been highly encouraging with displays particularly popular and subsequent sell through very positive. Our customers also benefit from the pantry being available on our standard lead times."

TKC’s new Butler’s Pantry is available across every door range. Designed with organisation and practicality in mind, while providing a stunning focal point in any kitchen, the new unit is available in an elegant oak finish and measures 1970mm x 1000mm x 560mm. It features fixed shelves to the top and bottom, three drawers, with spice racks available to purchase separately

The ultimate storage solution for an organised kitchen scheme, Crown Imperial offers a variety of mid and high wall pantries, with a versatile choice of customisable interior configurations including open shelving, spice drawers, wine, plate and door racks, glass holders and trays to personalise to every client’s individual needs. Showcased here is a Midsomer timeless shaker pantry design styled in Grey Aqua

Simon Bodsworth, managing director of Daval Furniture, recommends that focusing on the practical and helpful nature of storage solutions for today’s busy lives is vital for retailers when highlighting their storage options in a showroom setting. "Retailers need to fully demonstrate how these products can actively enhance daily life as well as ticking the boxes for sustainability and design. Carefully curated props and well-dressed displays will help end users to visualise products in their own kitchens and understand how the right furniture can anchor and support their lives: from food shopping and meal planning, through to home baking and even entertaining friends and family."

Daval’s new Linton furniture collection is made of solid ash with contemporary narrow-framed Shaker-style cabinetry. Clients can tailor storage solutions to their needs by specifying integrated accessories such as a tray unit and chopping boards

Choosing vertical storage allows designers to maximise space in a kitchen. The SpaceTower larder from Masterclass Kitchens boasts easy-to-use internal drawers that are concealed behind double doors. It’s available in three finishes, shown here in Solva Hunter Green with Tuscan Walnut cabinetry

"In my experience, high-performing showrooms have a great range of fully integrated solutions so that customers feel like they are actually in someone’s house with real groceries and household items in the cupboards and drawers," agrees Matt Phillips, head of UK operations at Rotpunkt. "However, given that some consumers have specific needs and may need to be persuaded of the benefits of a particular storage idea, there is a lot to be said for inviting the client ‘behind the scenes’ into the staff kitchen or office areas so they can see a relevant product in daily use, if appropriate. I believe that showing hybrid furniture in a real-life setting helps to build trust and confidence and will also enhance your bank of testimonials, so do make sure that you have ‘before and after shots’ of recent projects as well as supportive brand imagery easily available on a staff tablet or screen in your client meeting area. Remember that you are not really selling a kitchen, you are selling the power of possibilities to enhance a whole family’s lifestyle!"

Seen here in the new Dark Split Oak, storage options for Rotpunkt’s wall-panel system includes glassware holders, industrial hooks, slimline storage caddies, metal shelves, a tablet holder, and a side-facing wooden knife block. Each accessory is designed to clip straight on to the panels for endless customisation, even the shelves can slide left and right. Designers can apply a single full-height panel or personalised arrangement made-up of multiple panels to better suit the space and individual needs

BA’s new Buxton Butler’s Pantry, shown here in Matt Sage Green, can be easily integrated into today’s blended kitchen spaces. Behind the pantry’s full height doors is quality light oak shelving with nine separate compartments to make it simple to keep track of store cupboard basics, plus two generous open Integra drawers designed with a unique double-stop mechanism

Tags: kitchens, features, storage, larders, pantries

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