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10 Ways to Add Kitchen Storage Without Completely Renovating

Check out these simple ideas for retrofitting handy storage into your cookspace

Alice Humphrys
12 October 2017

Struggling for kitchen storage, but don’t want to redo your whole cookspace? It’s possible to add useful storage without planning a full renovation – just take a look at these nifty ideas that can be easily fitted into your existing kitchen.

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Go up and over
Stand back and have a good look around your kitchen. Have you got dead space around or even above a doorframe where you could squeeze in some bespoke shelving? The doorway here doesn’t just take you from one room to the next, it has been given an extra-special purpose with handy cubbyholes for chopping boards, trays, mixing bowls and recipe books.

The key to planning good storage like this, is to work out what it is you actually need to store. Then you can find yourself a good joiner and plan the storage around those items.

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Organise your walls
If you’re going for open shelves in your kitchen, put them to work by adding some extra storage solutions. This organised cookspace has combined shelving with a mix of rails, hooks and hanging baskets. It creates an informal and relaxed feel, while keeping everything tidy and easy to grab.

If you’re worried it will look messy be careful not to overfill and keep like with like – line up your best matching coffee cups and glasses, and stack up small bowls.

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Add an antique piece
If you’ve got a spare wall, free up cupboard space with a freestanding vintage cabinet. It will give you some extra-practical storage and add character and charm at the same time. Make note of the dimensions of the space and have a good rummage at your local flea market or car-boot sale to find something that fits. You can always revamp it with a lick of paint to match your kitchen cabinets. Fill it with your favourite glassware, crockery and anything that you’re happy to have on display.

Clever tricks to make your kitchen look more expensive

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Hang up your ingredients
Herb pots hogging vital counter space? Make use of the sunlight streaming through your kitchen window and hang pots from a rail or two. Simply attach the pole to brackets like you would a curtain pole. Hang the pots using hooks or try your hand at a simple macramé plant pot hanger made from jute cord. Re-pot your herbs and make sure there are drainage holes in the bottom. They will need a good source of sunlight, so this would work best with a south-facing window.

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Make use of awkward angles
Stairs can often create unwanted angles that are hard to know what to do with. In this kitchen, the owners have made use of this little nook by tucking in some beautifully crafted open shelves. They free up cupboard space and serve as the perfect spot for displaying china.

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Build in a pull-out pantry
If you’ve got a free space on a stud wall in your kitchen, you might be able to build in a niche for your dream, pull-out pantry. Speak to a carpenter about your options and consider the size carefully – as a rule of thumb, a pantry any wider than 400mm will feel too heavy to pull. With access from both sides, it is the perfect home for everyday cooking items such as spice jars, canned goods, oils and jars of dried foods.

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Line up your plates
It’s a shame to keep your most attractive tableware hidden away. A traditional wall-hung plate rack has a lovely homely feel and is a great way to create a display while freeing up cupboard space. Mount it on the wall above a sink or dishwasher, so when the dishes are clean they can easily be put away.

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Put your bins away
Freestanding bins take up floor space and can be an eyesore. If you can sacrifice a cupboard, pull-out bins will be your saving grace. Not only will they conceal any rubbish, but you can opt for a mix of containers to help you separate your trash from your recycling.

If you can’t spare a whole cabinet, look out for smaller door-hung bins that you can attach to the cupboard door, while leaving room for other storage. Think about positioning, too, as you will find them useful near your sink or food-prep area.

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Overhaul your under-sink storage
Cupboards under the sink can be the most tricky space in the kitchen for storage as it can be hard to navigate around all that awkward plumbing. The owners of this kitchen have used wire baskets to help separate dishcloths from cleaning products. They’ve also made use of the inside of the doors with shallow shelving to store bin liners and other everyday essentials.

It can get wet under the sink, so opt for waterproof storage units made of plastic or metal, and choose ones that are also easy to pull out in case of any plumbing issues.

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Divide up your drawers
The way you arrange the inside of your drawers and cupboards can make all the difference when it comes to an organised kitchen. Shelf and drawer dividers are a handy device for making the most of every inch of space. Awkward shaped kitchenware needs to go somewhere, and this deep drawer, divided into sections, is the perfect home for rolling pins, trivets, trays and tins.

Similarly, organise a cupboard with vertical dividers to make easy storage for chopping boards.

How have you added extra storage to your kitchen? Share your ideas/photos in the Comments section.
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