She requested a drop-leaf design, which gives her the flexibility to use the island for an occasional meal. But because she can fold down the leaves when not in use, she gets a little extra circulation space as needed.
Pantry barn doors. Here’s a lovely use of the barn door trend: opening a pantry. Because the doors slide on a rail, the kitchen or pantry doesn’t need clearance area for a swinging door, allowing more space for other uses. The wide pantry doors can also be left open for easy access. These barn doors create a pretty design accent with their gray paint and black hardware.
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Pantry cabinet. This pantry cabinet in Ireland brings a highly efficient storage area into the kitchen workspace. Pantry storage areas like this are seen in the U.K., where it is known as a larder. It often is hidden behind double cabinetry doors in the kitchen rather than being in a separate room. The doors open to a storage system with open shelves on top, spice racks on the doors and bottom drawers or bins. The shelves usually are shallow enough so everything can be seen at a glance. This larder has a pullout work surface and a tall appliance shelf as a stand mixer, turning it into a baking center as well.
Add more counter space. Keep it simple while adding value by using an island to significantly increase the amount of counter space in your kitchen. Having more counter space adds obvious benefits: more room for meal prep, multiple chefs and can serve as an eating area. Create contrast by using a different material or color for the island counters than you did in the rest of the room. If your regular countertops are white quartz, try black or a dark stained wood for the island.
Don’t let a good visual get in the way of functionality. Before you renovate or give your island an update, consider these options for how to choose the best dining arrangement to save your household — and your knees — a lot of bumps down the road.