Imagine hosting a gathering in your home. You’re going to want ample seating, and probably a good supply of food and drink. This means plates, utensils, glassware and more. If you’re lucky, a friend will have brought you a fine bottle of wine…
Now. Where did you put that corkscrew?
If you go to a high-end restaurant and watch a good cook, you’ll notice that they rarely take a step anywhere. They reach and pivot and turn, but everything that they need is within reach. This is because each cook begins his or her shift by gathering all of the ingredients and tools they need to successfully execute a meal period. If they are grilling, they have an ample supply of tongs and knives, trays of chicken breast and lamb chops, and all of the spices to flavor meats. If they’re working sauces, they’ll likely have butter, oil, tomatoes, pans, and potholders.
This set-up is known as “mise en place”. It’s both a noun and a verb, and translates as “everything in its place”.
When we design and build a custom home for a client, we think about their mise en place. Certainly, there will be cabinets and closets, but those will be more than the sum of their shelves and closet rods.
Whether a kitchen, the bathroom, or an expansive walk-in closet, we take special care with storage needs. We often design and create innovative spaces for a collection of wines, specialized tools, life-long hobbies and more.
Here are some of the things that we consider:
- Will these be daily-use items or long-term storage?
For items like kitchen utensils or bathroom toiletries, there should be a specific spot for storage, neat and tidy and tucked away, but always within reach. An out-of-season wardrobe can be hidden behind doors.
- What sort of lighting is needed?
It seems as if every home has a “junk drawer”, but breaking out a flashlight to find a certain screwdriver seems foolish. You shouldn’t need a tool to find a tool.
- Natural light or artificial light?
If we’re designing a space for crafting or painting, a bright, open window might be called for. Sunlight, however, has its own properties, and would be a poor choice for lighting a wardrobe.
- Are there climate considerations?
Certain items could easily be organized in a garage, attic or basement. A prized collection of classic albums needs to be protected from extreme heat and cold. A wine cellar would be fine in an actual cellar, but wines should never be too cold or too hot. For special applications, like a wine cellar, we may even install a dedicated climate control system.
- How much real estate do you need?
If you’re not much of a laundry person, a tucked away washer & drier with a simple ironing board might do. If you’re a serious clothing person, however, space for sorting, folding and stacking is a must. This is especially important if you’re designing space for crafting.
There are few things more irritating that knowing that you own something and not knowing where it is. There are few more embarrassing than inviting friends over for a glass of wine and not being able to uncork the bottle.
We’ve worked with clients with storage needs both large and small. From the mundane to specialized collections of things, we’ve created the perfect storage spaces.
We make certain that our clients have their mise en place.