IN­SIDE STORY Mak­ing the most of kitchen stor­age space

In­crease the ef­fi­ciency of your kitchen and make the most of the stor­age space with these clever ideas

South African Garden and Home - - Contents -

There are so many dif­fer­ent ways to make your kitchen more or­gan­ised and ef­fi­cient, while keep­ing it clut­ter free. Here are some smart in­no­va­tions for both new and ex­ist­ing kitchens.


“We al­ways rec­om­mend us­ing draw­ers in­stead of shelves,” says Izelle Janse van Rens­burg of Ea­sylife Kitchens. Of­ten items on shelves get for­got­ten at the back, but draw­ers al­low you to pull out the con­tents and ac­cess ev­ery­thing in­side.

High-end sys­tems like the Space Tower by Blum take the con­cept of the drawer to a whole new level. “It’s the per­fect solution for a pantry cup­board,” ex­plains Bron­wyn Shell, mar­ket­ing con­sul­tant at Eclipse. “The draw­ers are ar­ranged at heights that suit you and each one ex­tends com­pletely, giv­ing you ac­cess to the con­tents from three sides.” The draw­ers also have high sides so that even larger items like bottles are safely con­tained.

Draw­ers for heav­ier items like pots and crockery need run­ners that can take the weight. “Blum’s drawer sys­tems are de­signed to open and close smoothly, even with a heavy weight in­side,” says Bron­wyn. The sys­tem also al­lows for add-ons such as power-as­sisted open­ing and clos­ing. For ex­am­ple, Blum’s elec­tri­cal Servo-Drive does this with a light touch.

If you’re up­grad­ing an ex­ist­ing

kitchen, a car­pen­ter or handy­man can re­place shelves with run­ners and draw­ers. Just make sure that the run­ners are strong enough to hold the con­tents and that the hinges al­low the cab­i­net doors to open com­pletely. An­other point to con­sider is whether the car­casses are strong enough to bear the load of the draw­ers. “Make sure the run­ners are in­stalled prop­erly,” says Izelle. “Un­for­tu­nately, some in­stall­ers ex­clude the front screws on some run­ners, re­sult­ing in dam­age to the car­cass.”


Make more use of a cor­ner cab­i­net by fit­ting a re­volv­ing carousel. “Our model makes for eas­ier ac­ces­si­bil­ity and smarter use of the space,” says An­drew Milne, manag­ing direc­tor of UCAN. It can also ac­com­mo­date smaller items like spices and gro­ceries.

You could also con­sider the half-moon shaped shelv­ing sys­tem from Leroy Mer­lin. The front is at­tached to the cab­i­net door so, as you open it, the shelves swivel out­wards. It can be used for stor­ing pots and crockery, and even gro­ceries.

The Le Mans cor­ner cab­i­net sys­tem by Kesse­böh­mer (avail­able from Ea­sylife Kitchens) is an­other op­tion. The sys­tem con­sists of two shelves with non-slip bases, so that items like crockery don’t move around.


Cook­ing is much more pleasant when all your uten­sils are in one place and easy to find. Whether it’s cut­lery or crockery, plac­ing ev­ery­thing in com­part­ments makes it more ac­ces­si­ble.

One of the ad­van­tages of a new kitchen is that you can op­ti­mise the avail­able space and choose wider, deeper draw­ers to in­crease stor­age. Cus­tomise each drawer us­ing or­gan­is­ing sys­tems that cre­ate sep­a­rate com­part­ments for stor­ing items neatly.

You can also max­imise the stor­age space of ex­ist­ing draw­ers with ex­pand­able or­gan­is­ers like the OXO Good Grips uten­sil or­gan­iser and in­di­vid­ual di­viders like those by Pro­gres­sive to par­ti­tion the avail­able space. Both prod­ucts are avail­able from Yup­piechef.

Blum ORGA-LINE stain­less steel con­tain­ers can be placed in mul­ti­ple con­fig­u­ra­tions to suit your needs and they can be popped in the dish­washer for clean­ing.

If you’re wor­ried about plates top­pling off the top of the stack, the Blum plate­holder stores 12 plates se­curely and can be ad­justed to the size of the plate. Each holder has han­dles so you can lift out a whole stack of plates at the same time and the non-slip feet en­sure they’re kept safely in one place. “You can also buy non-slip mats for crockery draw­ers,” adds Izelle.


These days it’s com­pul­sory in some ar­eas to sep­a­rate waste. As bins take up space and aren’t par­tic­u­larly at­trac­tive, the solution is an or­gan­ised waste sys­tem such as Leroy Mer­lin’s, which can be in­stalled un­der the sink. The large drawer holds the dif­fer­ent bins, which have han­dles for easy emp­ty­ing.

While it’s de­signed to fit into their

DIY kitchens, it can also be in­stalled in an ex­ist­ing kitchen.

The Waste­boy from Eclipse also fits into the cup­board un­der the sink and has a shelf on top for bin bags and clean­ing prod­ucts. The unit con­sists of two bins, which slide out smoothly. The waste bin drawer can be equipped with Ninka bins, avail­able in dif­fer­ent sizes and con­fig­u­ra­tions. The sim­i­lar Unolux sys­tem from

Ea­sylife Kitchens also has lids with built-in bio-fil­ters, re­duc­ing odours and im­prov­ing hy­giene.

THIS SPREAD: 1. The Space Tower by Blum lets you ac­cess the con­tents from three sides. 2. Kesse­böh­mer‘s Clean­ing Agent slides eas­ily into a cup­board. 3. Stain­less steel can dis­penser from Neat Freak. 4. The carousel from UCAN is ideal for a cor­ner cab­i­net. 5. The ORGA-LINE foil and film dis­pensers from Blum have built-in blades and are de­signed to fit in a drawer. 6. The non-slip bases on the Le Mans cor­ner unit by Kesse­böh­mer en­sures that your crockery stays put. 7. These shelves from Leroy Mer­lin swivel out as the door is opened.

THIS PAGE: 1. The knife-holder from Blum’s AMBIA-LINE range stores up to nine knives neatly in a drawer. 2. Ad­justable to stan­dard plate sizes, the plate-holder from Blum al­lows you to carry a whole stack of plates. 3. The OXO Good Grips uten­sil or­gan­iser is a good bud­get op­tion for a cut­lery drawer. 4. Blum ORGA-LINE di­viders can be used to or­gan­ise pantry items.

THIS PAGE: 1. The waste­m­an­age­ment sys­tem from Leroy Mer­lin. 2. Unolux bins from Ea­sylife Kitchens have op­tional bio-fil­ter lids for ex­tra odour pro­tec­tion. 3. The Waste­boy is a slid­ing unit that fits neatly into the space un­der the sink. 4. For flatlets and apart­ments, this kitchen in a cup­board from Mile­stone Kitchens stores ev­ery­thing you need in one unit.

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