Contemporary living, busy lifestyles, home entertaining, understandably we have embraced the open plan design concept so enthusiastically, it just makes sense. But without the closed off formal dining room anymore how do you keep your kitchen looking like it has just stepped out of Vogue Living? Long clean lines, no clutter on benches, a spot to enjoy a coffee with friends or oversee the homework, in fact the kitchen really is the new living room! Of course the answer is the Butler’s Pantry, the answer to every gourmet (aka messy) chef’s needs!
Our Spectra team shares their top tips on making sure this little wonder becomes your best friend in the kitchen.
Integrating open shelving into your design combines the functionality of the easy-to-view stocktake with keeping this space feeling open and not so closed in. Ideally these shelves are for frequent items like the salt and pepper shakers and other everyday condiments. Why not start fresh with your storage canister collection as well, to create a neat and organised feel and no more mis-matched lids try somewhere like Howards Storage World or Ikea.
Open shelving can also be great to display some daily inspiration, the Montclair on display at Greenvale Gardens.
More than just a space to store the daily groceries, the Butler’s Pantry can be the perfect food preparation area, ideal for when the dinner party guests have decided to sit right at the kitchen bench! Make sure you are thinking about enough bench space for small appliances such as coffee machines, toasters and kettles in addition to room to cut veggies and plate up the culinary delights.
Consider the Butler’s Pantry an extension of the main kitchen and keep the colour theme consistent. Splashes of colour and drama can be added from decorative accessories or an inspiring feature wall.
The dark ebony bench in the kitchen of the Sanctuary at Somerfield Estate Keysborough continues right through to the pantry, giving a spacious feel. The addition of a feature wall in the pantry is a great way to add some personality.
Above all your Butler’s Pantry needs to be functional, and not being a big space means that you need to be organised and realistic about what you can fit in. Our advice, when planning your kitchen and pantry duo, is to make a wish list and then we can work with you to see what goes where. We are seeing a lot of our clients including pull out bins, tea towel racks or installing hooks and rails for items like knife storage, or reusable shopping bags, to make the best use of wall and cupboard space. While it has been common to include a single bowl kitchen sink in your pantry, we are now seeing more and more dishwashers in this space, which gets the dishes away from the ‘showpiece’ kitchen area.
Windows and doors
While task lighting is very important to make your Butler’s Pantry truly functional, you can’t beat the benefits of natural light in a workspace. Where your home design can accommodate, the addition of a ‘window splashback’ can transform your pantry into a light filled room you may find yourself escaping to more than you thought you would. Depending on the location of your pantry within your home, the orientation on your block and other considerations, an external door can be ideal for easy rubbish removal or even bringing in the shopping from the car. But this will come at the expense of usable wall space, so prioritise accordingly.
The light flow through the additional window in the Butler’s Pantry in the Sheraton at The Address Point Cook makes this entire kitchen zone glow, who couldn’t be inspired in a space like this?
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