Built-In’s Beyond the Bookshelf

Built-in features help enhance your home’s look and maximize usable area. Moreover, they are an excellent way to create a custom design for your house that stands to increase its value in the long run. Built-in’s can be incorporated into both the house’s interior and exterior, depending on your needs. Consider any one of the following projects as a means to seamlessly integrate more storage and visual interest into your living space.


The Kitchen Nook

A little retro, a little minimalist, the kitchen nook is an interesting take on the built-in. Typically this involves two permanent benches facing each other or in a L-shape around a grounded table. It is an easy way to get eating space into an otherwise small kitchen. Hang a lovely light fixture over the table and consider making the benches open from the top or sides as additional storage space.



Window Bench Seat

While we’re talking about benches, adding a bench seat under a window is another way to add an interesting design element to a room. Pick a window with a particularly good view or one that lets in lots of natural light. The built-in bench seat is a great option for a sitting room, a master bedroom, or a child’s room, where you can store blankets, books, and toys in or under the bench.

The Aquarium

A good aquarium does not have to take up a lot of space to have a visual impact. Small aquariums make stunning built-in’s in a kitchen’s backsplash area, a dining room, or in a family room. Some people make use of the aquarium as a room divider. This is an effective way to create a separation of space without a solid wall, so that you can still see through the aquarium into the other room.

The Desk

Your home office can be built-in to the room where you are most inclined to work. A table customized to your size preference between built-in shelving or bookcases keeps the area organized and streamlined. So even if your house does not come equipped with a designated office, you can build one into the space you have available.

The Headboard

Beds do not have to be a traditional four-poster or headboard-footboard design. Try something different with a built-in headboard. Using a wood, stone, or tile design, create a headboard directly on the wall. Another take on this built-in idea is to construct a headboard with built-in bookshelves.

The Shoe Bench

Whether it’s one shoe-loving person or a family of five, chances are you can benefit from a built-in shoe bench or shoe rack. If you want it available for everyone’s footwear, incorporate it into a mudroom or an entry area. This unit also works well in the closet if you need it to organize an entire shoe collection.

The Flower Box

Inside or outside, the built-in flower box is a beautiful and convenient way to showcase your plants. You can construct it from the ground up, so that it sits at knee or waist-level, or elevate it so that it is attached to a window sill and out of reach from pets and children. Either way, it is a simple and elegant way to incorporate greenery into your space.

Beyond the Basic Bookcase

Still, among the most convenient built-in’s, there remains the bookcase. Placed around a fireplace, in a home office, under a bench, or even built into a bed unit, bookcases can be used for books or other decorative elements. Think beyond the traditional bookcase and combine any of the ideas outlined above with your shelving needs, and you are on your way to creating a personalized, interesting space!


Responsible Contractors understands that homeowners want the best professionals available to assist them with their custom home designs. Check out their free-to-search directory of verified, qualified contractors here: https://www.responsiblecontractors.com/.

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