DECIDING ON A STYLE
In today’s style-conscious times, it's vital to plan storage that's as stylish as it's practical. Take time to choose looks and finishes
that appeal. As well as leafing through interiors magazines, visit home
stores to look at designer storage systems and check out chain stores
for budget options that may be customized.
Do your research in less obvious
places, too. Look carefully at the ways stores display goods, as shop
fixtures are often imaginatively designed. In restaurants, check out
how they stack tableware, combining ease of access with good looks.
Early on, decide whether cupboards and shelves will blend with the interior
architecture at home. In a period property, with pretty paneling or high
baseboards, it makes sense to match built-in carpentry to the prevailing
style. In small rooms, such uniformity will also enhance the space. But
in a large room or an open-plan zone, it can be fun to use storage to
set a new decorative tone.
The more you find out about potential surfaces
for doors, or shelf trims, the more imaginative the looks will be. As
well as rich wood veneer, stainless steel, or painted board, you could
consider frosted glass, plexiglass, and fabric or suede.
Detailing matters too, so look for decorative handles for cupboards and drawers. There’s a huge choice, from stainless steel to resin, glass
to leather: often, just adding new handles can instantly update storage.
If open shelves are to be lined with containers, choose wisely.
Identical wicker baskets, zinc tubs, or plastic boxes look good lined up, but buy
a few spares, so that you can add gradually to the storage system.
If you are devoting an entire wall to closets, plan the style and materials
as carefully as you might a wallpaper or fabric. To make flush floor-to-ceiling
doors "disappear," paint them a color to match the walls. If choosing
wood or veneer doors, ask to see a large sample in order to gauge the
overall effect, as highly decorative grains can look very dominant.
Check out unusual sources to give a fresh twist to purpose-built
shelving. These riveted steel units, originally destined as warehouse
shelving, add a raw decorative contrast to the sleek wood finishes.
Take time to research good containers to line up on shelves
or over wall cupboards. In addition to the mall, look at mail-order storage
catalogs and office-supply stores. Match the container to the mood in
the room. For a simple country finish, woven baskets or wood containers
look great, or for a wackier storage option try glass cube vases or identical
sturdy brown shopping bags.Take time to research good containers to line
up on shelves or over wall cupboards. In addition to the mall, look at
mail-order storage catalogs and office-supply stores. Match the container
to the mood in the room. For a simple country finish, woven baskets or
wood containers look great, or for a wackier storage option try glass
cube vases or identical sturdy brown shopping bags.