How to Add Storage to an Awkward Space


A couple months ago, I styled in a kitchen/dining space that had gotten a major face-lift, including upgrades of new paint (Sherwin Williams Repose Gray), backsplash subway tile, + shiplap (everyone’s favorite material!).

In addition to the upgrades and new décor, my clients’ and I also wanted to amp up the space next to their refrigerator, which had become a drop-zone for all the paper things. I suggested having some shelves made that can be used as either storage or a spot for some extra décor—to up the style-level in the space.

How to Add Storage to an Awkward Space from H.Prall & Co. |

My clients worked with a neighbor on the exact design of the project; they opted for 4 adjustable shelves that can change depending on need and use. I included 1 basket (for actual storage) and a few decorative pieces while styling the space. The homeowners will be able to move the baskets and décor around, however, as their needs change.

Another aspect of the design is that we created space for the trashcan (taking into consideration its lid that opens automatically). While my clients did build their home…styles, appliances, and accessories have changed over time; adding built-ins is a smart + functional way to keep that custom look and enhance the space’s ability to work best for the homeowners.

Custom storage space next to a refrigerator in a newly remodeled kitchen |

There is a lot of flexibility in this type of upgrade. If you don’t need shelves, but could really use a spot for your broom, extra plastic bags, or cleaning supplies…a small closet would work here as well. In addition, more shelves could be created above the refrigerator for larger pieces that don’t get used very often. I like how my clients left the top of the fridge open, though…because it allows the space to breathe. Adding a basket on top helps to soften the space, as well as corralling clutter that can easily happen there.

If you have an awkward space, around ill-fitting appliances especially, custom-built shelves can be a great solution! I think this is a smart upgrade for a laundry room too, as there always seems to be lots of wasted space around the washer and dryer.

Creating a functional space isn’t always about gutting the room and starting over. Instead, I suggest thinking about what your needs are, clearing out what you don’t use (if you do that…you might just discover you have enough space after all), and working with someone who can help you visualize how to best use your space.

Creating Real Life(Style) isn’t about living how everyone else is, it’s about loving the life you have and living in a way that makes you happy!