The Storage-Smart House
Every Inch Counts
A hardworking family needs a hardworking living area, one that uses every inch of space available. Built-in cabinets stash books and media and provide a bonus display surface. Find or design and build furniture that serves more than one purpose: This coffee table/ottoman has a rotating top with an upholstered side for feet and a hardwood side for snacks.
Savvy Cabinet Strategies
No room in the house needs more storage space than the kitchen. Strategic cabinet placement makes the most of the small space in this kitchen. Glass-front upper cabinets installed over windows create display-like storage without sacrificing natural light.
Thick passageways between rooms include built-in bookshelves and display space.
Bridge the Gap
A partial wall and bookcase unit bridges the kitchen and sitting room and holds cookbooks, magazines, and essential toys for kids (in color-coded bins, of course).
The kitchen communication center features a computer and a flat-panel television on an articulated arm that can be concealed behind bifold doors.
Out in the Open
Fresh paint and new glass shelves transform the dining room's traditional, basic built-ins into a sassy mod-style wall unit.
A homework lounge in a dead-end hallway packs function into a once-forgotten space. Book storage wraps under and above a curvy built-in couch that comfortably accommodates two young readers or one catnapping adult.
Flexible Work Area
The computer nook occupies a sliver of space between bedroom doors. An interior window pulls natural light from one bedroom. Sized for a "pilot and copilot" while surfing the Internet, the space can be reconfigured as needs change.
Twelve-inch-deep bookcases in the master bedroom are perfect for passionate readers. Cubbies in different sizes lend flexibility for storing collectibles, photos, and larger books.