- Keep items used frequently in easily accessible cupboards
- Store heavy items underneath worktops
- Plan to keep worktops free of clutter
Think carefully about how much storage space you might
need – for small electrical items, food, cutlery
and crockery, cooking utensils and cleaning equipment.
Remember that labour-saving items like food mixers and
juicers need to be permanently at the ready – if
you have to get them out of a cupboard every time you want
to use them, you won’t!
When your kitchen is installed, think logically about
where to put everything. Keep items you use regularly in
the most accessible cupboards. Those you use infrequently
can go in higher cupboards while heavier items should be
tucked away in cupboards underneath the worktops.
Below the kitchen worktop
After you have planned the position of your sink, fridge
and hob/cooker, the remainder of the space below the worktop
can be used for storage. This is particularly useful for
heavy items such as electrical equipment and pots, pans
and oven dishes. Calculate how much space these items will
Products like bottles of wine and vegetables that don't
need to go in the fridge will also need space beneath the
worktop. Look at alternatives to cupboards – a pull-out
cabinet or trolley perhaps, or maybe special shelving on
which to display your wine.
Vegetables need a cool, dry and preferably dark home to
preserve their freshness so keep them well away from the
cooker. (The same applies to spices although, bizarrely,
decorative spice racks encourage people to expose their
herbs and spices to the light.)
Cutlery will generally be kept beneath the worktop as
well, with drawers being the conventional storage option.
Ladles, wooden spoons and other cooking utensils might
be more conveniently stored in a jar on the worktop. Knives
can be kept on a magnetic knife holder attached to the
wall or in a separate knife-block on the worktop. Make
sure, though, that your kitchen worktop is free from too
much clutter as this will give your kitchen a messy look
and reduce the amount of space you have on which to work.
Above the kitchen worktop
As the space below the worktop will mostly be used for
cupboards, storage here can be more creative. The items
stored are usually lighter and are sometimes more decorative
which can make them suitable for display.
Cupboards are not the only option. For example, plates
can be kept in a plate rack – which can also help
prevent them from chipping. Mugs, cups and jugs can hang
from hooks on open shelves. Cooking utensils can be hung
from a rail sited over the main working area for easy
access. Onions and garlic also can be hung on the rail.
Food like pasta and sugar can be stored in decorative
glass jars and displayed on open shelving. A mixture
of storage options often works best to relieve the potential
monotony of a vast bank of cupboards, especially in a
Bear in mind that items on open display are susceptible
to steam, grease and dust, so this type of storage should
only be used for goods that are needed on a frequent basis.
An alternative is to place such items behind glass cupboard
doors where they will remain decorative but protected.
Try to think ‘outside the box’ – for
- If you have a small kitchen with a limited work
surfaces, why not buy a butcher's block on wheels that
can be stored under a worktop and pulled out when you
need more working space
- Consider using a floor-to-ceiling, free-standing cupboard
in which to store all your crockery or as a larder
for canned and packaged food. It is a very efficient use of
- A dresser is an elegant storage solution, offering space
to both display and conceal items, if you have sufficient
A high ceiling gives you the opportunity to install a rack
from which to hang pans – first ensuring that
both rack and ceiling are strong enough to support
- Look for kitchen units with a corner carousel if you have
a U-shaped or L-shaped kitchen.
- In a small, narrow kitchen go for tall wall cupboards with