White might be simple, but never dull.

Sunday, March 18, 2012


There is nothing that puts your square footage to better use than built-ins. It could be a desk framed within a seldom-used closet or a bookcase tucked into a niche beside the fireplace, or in your high ceiling, built-ins maximize every available inch of your floor plan. They handily transform the dead zones under stairs and below and above windows into functional space and help you get organized by adding new storage options without adding on to your home. You can design them to tie in with other architectural elements in the room, such as crown moldings and wainscoting. Fitted with doors, they help maintain the integrity of your style by concealing modern amenities like computer workstations or a mini fridge in a wet bar.

Built-ins are a great way to add character, function, and storage to a room. Custom, built-in furniture can make the most of every inch of your home. Built-ins are secured to the wall thus saving the usual few inches required with free standing furniture pieces. Their custom nature makes the options endless and the configurations more flexible for your particular space. 

Irregularly shaped walls and nooks can become functional spaces with a little creativity and a set of built-in bookshelves.
If you have an awkward kitchen nook, consider banquette seating with storage underneath. No storage for your serving dishes and linens? Add built-in cabinets to your dining room. They can add value and function to almost any room in the house.
Consider the measurements you'll require. For instance, do you have a bunch of coffee table books you'd like on shelves? Check out their heights and widths to figure out what you'll need. Remember that books look good stacked as well as standing upright. I recommend having your carpenter make the shelves adjustable. Likewise, for cabinet storage, measure games and other items to make sure they will fit. 
As for aesthetics, look around the room for horizontal lines to line built-ins up with, like mantles. Take a look at the ceiling mouldings and baseboards in your home, and have your carpenter match them across the tops and bottoms of shelving units. 

Consider lighting needs. You can provide light from rope lights tucked under shelves, consider art lighting, recessed lighting or you may want to install some outlets within the built-ins so that you can incorporate some small table lamps or be able to hide unsightly media wires. 

Storage is a common problem for most homeowners, but with effective and clever built-ins, organization is a no-brainer. Because built-ins are custom-made for each space, they maximize every square inch of your home. They can turn empty, unused space into hardworking home offices, drawers, shelves, or even entertainment centers. Essentially, built-in storage units can add hundreds of square feet to your home without the need for renovations.

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