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How Designers Create Hidden Storage

Hidden kitchen backsplash storgae by Frame Design Lab for Central Park West project.

I wonder how many of you are as obsessed about things being put away as I am. We all need storage in one form or another. Storage features in a home should be aligned with the resident’s lifestyle. For many, style may be a thing that gets completely overlooked when it comes to the utilitarian need for storage. Luckily, furniture is available in an endless array of looks to cure your style fix. But what about more permanent forms of storage? Built in storage in many homes is not given much “design thought”. Simply building a hallway closet here and a walk in pantry there doesn’t necessarily fit everyone’s needs nor is it very attractive. This post is all about how professional designers create cleverly hidden or seamless built-in storage in all areas of the home. Hopefully, this collection inspires you to see the possibilities in the typically glossed over storage features for the home.


Hidden Kitchen Storage

Custom panels can be applied to cabinet sides to hide the mess that ultimately builds up at command centers. Visual clutter from keys, memos, mail, etc. can be quickly hidden away with a door swing. What is left afterward is just a seamless cabinet panel. Some detailed planning is needed to recess the cabinet just enough to fit what you need while maintaining a hidden look once the panel is closed.



Kitchen islands are are a must for smart storage and to increase the function of a kitchen work area. Along with rows of drawers, a kitchen island could also incorporate small appliance storage that pops up. This makes items you don’t use every day out of site, but easily available on hand when you do need them. It’s the best of both worlds!


Hidden kitchen island storage in moden contemporary style in Sydney, Australia by DJE Architects.

By DJE Architects


Designing storage into the kitchen backsplash is a very clever design trend that has been slowly growing in popularity. Instead of using cabinetry to conceal storage, using a sliding panel integrated into the backsplash material is a less common but very functional way to store items you don’t want to look at but still need to have at hand while cooking.


Hidden kitchen backsplash storgae by Frame Design Lab for Central Park West project.

Central Park West project by Frame Design Lab


Hidden Bathroom Storage

This small row of storage is seamlessly hidden behind towel bars that double as pulls. Above this are are full sized cabinets. The small mosaic tiles make it difficult to spot the seams for an integrated and more spacious look.


Clever hidden bathroom wall storage designed by Studio Garneau in the Transformer Loft project.

Hidden bathroom storage cabinets behind mosaic tile for seamless hidden storage.

Transformer Loft by Studio Garneau

Hidden Bedroom Storage

By designing the bed into a paneled nook, cabinets can be seamlessly incorporated into the sides, above the built-in nightstands.

Hidden built in bedroom storage for a contemporary bedroom by Morgante Wilson Architects.

Morgante Wilson Architects

When thinking about storage for small spaces, designer Kim Kirby utilized the space adjacent to the window seat to hide drawers into the wall panels. This coastal bedroom gets to enjoy drawer storage and a feeling of openness.

Hidden drawer storage integrated into wall panels in a coastal bedroom by designer Kim Kirby.

Carriage House by Kim Kirby

Some attics offer a unique opportunity to hide storage behind the shortened walls created by the ceiling slope. In this transitional bedroom, a built-in bedside cabinet swings out to reveal hidden storage. This looks like a great place to keep rarely used items or even a safe.

Hidden attic bedroom storage behind swing out cabinet.

Nehemiah General Contractors

Hidden Living Room Storage

Cords and media equipment can be such an eyesore that quickly make a living or family room space appear cluttered. Fay Martel of Concepts M2 stored the fuse panel and CD shelf into a nook hidden by hinged artwork in this basement project.

Hidden fuse box and media storage in wall hidden by hinged art frames for basement remodel by Concepts M2.

Concepts M2


For this open plan living space, the Australian architects of Statkus Architects created several function zones that can be easily put away when not in use. Large doors matching the wall panels hide a desk area, closet, and laundry facilities. There is even seamless storage above the doorway to take advantage of any unused space.



Hidden Outdoor Storage

A large garden obelisk conceals the air conditioning unit at its base while providing garden tool storage at its top.


Hidden garden tool and air condition unit storage using a large decorative obelisk designed by Art Harrison Interiors.

Birmingham Private Garden by Art Harrison Interiors

It’s a double win when designers provide multiple uses while maintaining high standards of style in their designs. By taking the time to think about the details, the pros at MKL Construction carved out an area for storage into these wooden outdoor benches while creating a sleek modern look for the social gathering are of this waterfront project.


Hidden storage in outdoor bench by MKL Construction for waterfront Hamptons home.

Modern Waterfront project by MKL Construction


I hope this collection of professional design projects has inspired you to think about new or unexpected ways to provide built-in storage and hide unsightly messes once and for all!

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4 Responses

  1. Pingback : Hidden Outdoor Storage for Garden Tools | StashVault

  2. Veronica

    These are such great ideas! I love the idea of the pop up section for the kitchen island and the wall bedroom stand that moves out for things like a save or not normally used items. Brilliant!!
    When I build my home I will have to incorporate similar ways to keep things not only tidy but beautiful! Great article.

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