‘Renovating your home provides a great opportunity to make the most of every square inch of space, with a place for everything and easy access making everyday life organised for the whole family,’ says spokesperson for Hammonds and interior designer, Julia Kendell. ‘When starting a renovation project, the first consideration should be your current storage arrangements; make note of how much specific storage is required in each room of the house.’ Be as detailed as possible, particularly when it comes to storage for clothes.
‘Tricky spaces, such as alcoves, roof eaves or irregular walls, can make using freestanding furniture difficult,’ says Caitlin Price, beds and bedroom furniture buyer for John Lewis. ‘Choosing built-in furniture means the available space, however small, is maximised to its greatest advantage.’
If you’ve been inspired by statement storage pieces, such as bookcase room dividers, then consider the following points from product design manager at Heal’s, Kirsty Whyte: ‘Before you buy, work out how much access you’ll need to items that you intend to store away, and think about how you want to display books and photographs, for example. Also, do you want a contemporary bookcase, floating shelves, modular shelving, a freestanding unit, cupboards or a sideboard – or a mix of all of these?’
Hide your food-prep area and ingredients with a cabinet featuring clever pocket doors to conceal storage units, shelving, a preparation unit and storage drawer door. In this range, you can also choose from a sliding unit offering a pull-out rack and glass shelving system, and 300-plus finish combinations.
Sociable and neat dining
‘Swapping dining chairs for benches not only creates social seating but also offers additional storage,’ says John Sims-Hilditch, co-founder of Neptune Furniture. ‘Underneath you can stow baskets, which will add texture and provide storage for anything that is not needed everyday.’
Streamlined stair spaces
When planning an extension, ensure that your designer maximises the storage potential in awkward areas, such as around staircases. In this extended side return, MDF cupboards and shelving have been designed, built and painted to create a space on the stairs to link a busy kitchen area with the living room.
Standalone appliance unit
This unique door system provides the perfect storage solution, as its doors open like conventional hinged designs but then push back into the cabinet (left of picture), out of view. It’s simple to install and you can fit it yourself.
Minimalist clothes storage
When you want to create a sleek dressing area within a large or small bedroom, double-duty mirrored and sliding wardrobe doors are the way to go. Going for a customised storage option, rather than a standard wardrobe, means you can choose exactly how you want to store your clothes, shoes and accessories.
If you’re creating a double-height extension then maximise its grand size with statement design and streamlined storage. These light and airy bookcases are completely customisable, with a ladder and an optional glass display cabinet that can slide apart to reveal a flatscreen TV or further shelving. They’re also perfect as a room divider, as seen in the featured image.
Luxe loft space
When you’re extending or converting, it’s vital to plan storage at an early stage. The design of this loft extension has allowed fitted furniture to be incorporated by spacing the rafters accordingly to make the most of an awkward space. The sloped alcove features pull-out shoe racks and built-in drawer sets between the rafters, so that there’s no wasted space.
If you don’t have space for a wall of fitted shelving, then consider a super-statement designer bookcase such as this one, which looks more like an art installation than a practical storage solution. Composed of small crosses that form the shelving support, when books are placed on them they change from being distinct signs into a blurred but regular whole.
Organised open-plan living
You’ll want to emphasise the size of your extension and the amount of natural light coming in, so go for clean lines and as much storage as possible – think floating units, simple shelves and understairs storage.