When pre-made off-the-shelf furniture isn’t meeting your specific storage needs in the dining room, bedroom or hallway, look no further than kitchen cabinets for a good-looking and practical solution. Either custom-made or flat-pack kitchen cabinets can be used to create bespoke storage that caters to your personal needs, and to the particular space available in your home.
Contemporary Dining Room by ANNA CARIN Design
In the dining room
Maintain a cohesive link between the kitchen and dining room by carrying the same cabinets and colour scheme from the kitchen into your meal area.
Use kitchen drawers to create a custom credenza that can be used to store special-occasion crockery, glasses and serving platters, as well as table linen and placemats, all within easy reach of the dining table.
Tip: Use the same material as you kitchen benchtop on the sideboard cabinets to link the two areas. Use this space to display photos and decorative objects to create a relaxed, less kitchen area.
Beach Style Kitchen by Vitale Design
Creating banquette seating is another great use for kitchen cabinets in the dining area. Select low drawer cabinets that can double as a seat with storage. Place a foam cushion on top of the cabinets to create a comfortable and relaxed seating space for all the family.
Tip: Again, use the same cabinet fronts as the kitchen or at least cabinets that complement the kitchen to tie the two areas together.
No room for a dining area? Install a banquette!
Contemporary Bathroom by Susan Cleveland Design
In the bathroom
Finding the perfect vanity to suit the available space in a bathroom or ensuite can be difficult, particularly if the space is small or has non-standard measurements. Use some kitchen cabinets, either off-the-shelf or custom made, to create a bespoke vanity to suit the space perfectly. Here, a combination of two cabinets with different-coloured fronts creates a unique and designer-looking vanity that fits perfectly in the space available.
Create a floating vanity by using no legs or kickboards under the cabinets, and instead fix them securely to the wall. If the plumbing pipes for the vanity basin run down into the floor, they can be concealed by building a small box around them and tiling it with the same tiles used on the walls. Some overhead cabinets with mirror fixed to the door fronts serve two purposes; a mirror, and additional storage space for toiletries and cosmetics.
Contemporary Hall by CHT Architects
In the hallway
A large hallway is the perfect space to create some additional storage. Items such as coats, shoes, umbrellas, linen, brooms and the vacuum cleaner can all be stored in hallway cabinetry.
Here timber-look doors give the illusion of wall paneling as opposed to cabinetry fronts. Kitchen base cabinets can be used for the lower cabinetry, and either more base or overhead cabinets can be used for the upper cabinetry, depending on the depth required. For tall storage, a kitchen pantry or broom cupboard with matching doors can be used.
Using no visible handles on these cabinets creates a clean and streamlined look in this long hallway. Push-to-open doors allow for easy access to the cupboard behind, and give this storage more of a furniture look.
Traditional Living Room by Kitchens by Kathie
In the lounge room
This lounge room boasts almost as much storage as my entire house. Kitchen cabinets can be used to make custom-designed entertainment units, book shelves and storage for lounge rooms, family rooms and theatre rooms.
The custom-designed entertainment unit flows seamlessly into a tall bank of storage cabinets that could easily be made from kitchen pantries or broom cupboards. Combine cabinets with drawers and doors to cater for various storage requirements such as DVD collections, board games, books and children’s toys.
The addition of open shelves on which to display decorative and sentimental items, alongside books and family photos, makes the cabinetry feel less heavy and adds personality. If you are not keen on dusting open shelves every week, consider adding some glass doors (as opposed to solid doors) to maintain the open and light feeling.
Contemporary Home Theatre by Deadline Design
Shelving in the living room
In the bedroom
Freestanding wardrobes can be made from kitchen pantry or broom cabinets. Just remove any shelves you don’t need and add some hanging rails at heights to suit the length of your clothes. Choose door styles and finishes to suit the decor of your room. For example, panelled doors in a more traditional or classically styled space, or flat doors for a more contemporary, streamlined space.
Add extra storage in a bedroom area with some drawer cabinets that can be used to store underwear and nightwear, scarves, accessories and folded clothes. Finish the cabinets with a matching benchtop to help them look more like a piece of custom furniture. Display ornaments, personal items and family photos on the benchtop. Position a mirror above the drawers so you can use the area as a hair and make-up station, or as somewhere to put jewellery on before heading out.
Contemporary Kids by Watershed Design
Apply the same ideas in a child’s bedroom, using drawers to store both clothes and toys. Use the benchtop above drawers as somewhere to display favourite toys or keep boxes of tissues and wipes close to hand. Use open-shelf cabinets with no doors to display and store books, toy cars and baby keepsakes.
Traditional Laundry Room by Milestone Building Pty Ltd
In the laundry
A laundry room is the perfect place to put kitchen cabinets to use. Incorporate some base cabinets with a benchtop above to create work space and somewhere to position a laundry sink. Then add some overhead cabinets with doors to store laundry detergent and other cleaning products out of reach of little hands. Consider adding a couple of open shelves as well, to store pretty baskets of clothes pegs, cleaning brushes and other odds and ends.
If space permits, incorporate tall cabinets. A pantry cupboard can be used to store brooms, mops and even a vacuum, or could make a perfect linen cupboard. If the laundry is close to the kitchen, consider using the same cabinet fronts here to create a sense of continuity.
Where kitchen cabinet doors have detailing on the front or a painted finish, consider using a more cost-effective alternative in the laundry. Flat doors made from laminated board in the same, or a complementary, colour could work.
In the home office
Use kitchen cabinets to create a custom, built-in home office with exactly the amount of bench space and storage that you need. Use drawer cabinets to create file drawers by adding a file-drawer system to hang suspension files from. Most cabinet suppliers can also recommend and supply such hardware.
A laminated kitchen benchtop is a cost-effective alternative to a desk, and can be easily cut to size to suit any space. Stack some open-shelf cabinets on one end of the bench and use them to store books, stationery and file folders within reach of the work area. Underbench cabinets with doors can be used to store a computer tower and printer out of sight. Just add some ventilation holes to let heat escape from inside the cabinet.