The hidden benefits of built-in storage (and why you won’t regret the investment)
19th Dec 2019
More space, no more clutter and extra lighting and technology options – the benefits of built-in storage are endless.
We’re comfortable with the idea of built-in storage in the kitchen. It’s a working area, you use it every day, and if there’s a way to keep the countertops relatively clear and not look like a bomb has hit it every dinnertime, we’ll take it. But can’t that be applied to every room in your home? They’re all functional spaces, whether for eating, sleeping, relaxing, playing or bathing, and we use them all at least once a day. So why are we wary of including built-in storage elsewhere?
There are fears that built-in storage will make a room feel over-crowded, small and, for want of a better word, closeted. But well-thought-out, considered storage will actually do the opposite – it will make a room feel bigger, less confined and more comfortable. We spoke to the team at Komandor, Ireland’s most innovative space management and bespoke storage builders to find out how.
Cut the Clutter
First, built-in storage will do the obvious – remove clutter from your bedroom, bathroom, living room or kitchen. Once you put everything behind a uniform front, you’ll be surprised how much calmer a room can feel.
We’re easily overwhelmed by things, whether that be what to wear in the morning or what room is in need of some TLC. Putting non-essential items into built-in storage will help you to streamline your mind as well as your home.
We’re all guilty of having at least one cupboard in our homes that doesn’t really serve a purpose. It doesn’t quite fit the vacuum and one too many towels means the door spills open. So you end up using it for odds and ends. This is wasted space.
Custom-built storage eliminates these kinds of defunct cupboards. You get to decide just how much hanging space you require, lay out the perfect tall, narrow gap for sweeping brushes and mops, and have a place to put beloved handbags.
Really think about the items you wish to store there, whether it’s a hallway coat rack, a utility room cleaning supply closet or a walk-in wardrobe. Once you have those items in mind, measure out how much space you require for each and hand them all over to the wardrobe specialists at Komandor. They’ll be able to incorporate everything you need so that not even an inch of space is left empty.
An added bonus to built-in storage is you can hide more than your belongings. Things like speaker and TV wires and extra lighting connections, especially in a complete room where you can’t add any more wires or fixtures without tearing through the finished surfaces.
If one corner is particularly dark, add some spotlights to the shelving of your built-in unit, or even a flush line of LED lights will give the space a warm glow and highlight your favourite items without dominating proceedings. These can be wired under skirting boards and hidden behind the unit so you don’t have to go chipping away at plasterwork and repainting.
As well as being a place for homeless items and tucking away clutter, you can save even more space by building in furniture, especially in awkward corners.
Free-standing furniture takes up an inordinate amount of space. Try incorporating their function into your storage, like including a built-in vanity table in a bedroom, cosy window seat in a living room, or a desk in an underused hall space. You can make these expandable for when you’re using them to ensure they’re comfortable to use but neat and compact when they’re not occupied.
Display Your Favourites
While built-in storage is ostensibly about hiding things from view, they are also an opportunity to put on display the things you want to show off.
A few well-placed open shelves distributed throughout a built-in unit will help to break up the monotony of the wall of cupboards and gives you a chance to display a few choice items. Like planning what you’re going to store in them, think about what you’d like to display before you proceed. Inherited some antique glassware you’d like to show off but won’t want broken? A glass-paned door is ideal for you. Want a selection of books at your fingertips? Put a bookshelf at the same height as your armchair for easy reaching. The more you think about how you’d like to use the space, the more the storage will work for you.