How to Design a Beautiful and Functional Butler’s Pantry

TSG Tip: Murphy and Co Butlers Pantry

When it comes to putting the fun in functional, the butler’s pantry presents the perfect opportunity. A place where storage is key and space is often tight, these “working rooms” require careful planning, but they also inspire bold design choices that can bring them to life. Here, the residential architecture and design experts from Minneapolis-based Murphy & Co. outline what to consider when creating a chic yet functional space:

Give the room its own identity. Make the room feel like a thoughtfully designed area rather than just an ancillary space. While you’ll want the butler’s pantry to include details that relate to the rest of the house, giving it its own powerful aesthetic allows it to stand alone, so embrace the opportunity to turn what’s often an interior and closed-off space into an area worthy of attention.

Think high-design and high-function. You’ll want ample countertop space for this functional offshoot of the kitchen, along with plenty of integrated storage (including the upper transoms for those once-a-year pieces). To ensure everything will have its place, measure every utensil, platter, vase, serving piece, and glass you plan to store there. This might seem like a waste of time, but having the space planned and built for your belongings will pay off in the long run.

Make it beautiful. The butler’s pantry is a workhorse to be sure, but it’s also home to some of your most special belongings—your grandmother’s vase, the cake knife used for your wedding cake, a set of champagne flutes used to celebrate a special milestone. Why not make it beautiful?

TSG Tip 230 from Murphy & Co. Design in Minneapolis, Minnesota. Credits for space featured above: Architecture: Murphy & Co. Contractor/builder: John Kraemer & Sons. Photography: Corey Gaffer.