David Beckham defies kitchen trends with an unfitted, freestanding design – experts love the relaxed look

From fully unfitted spaces to single standout elements, this design approach brings character and interest

David Beckham
(Image credit: Getty Images / Jeff Spicer / Stringer)

Finding the right storage, furniture, and cabinetry is fundamental to the success of your kitchen design, and quite often a mix-and-match approach with freestanding furniture can often be better than fitted kitchen cabinetry when it comes to storage.

Whether adding a single dresser, similar to English former footballing legend David Beckham's kitchen, or embracing a fully unfitted design, a freestanding kitchen lets you create a bespoke space that can grow and change as needed. 

Freestanding kitchen units, as their name implies, rather than being secured to the walls, stand independently, and can be reconfigured as and when needed. As a result, this kitchen style has a more relaxed, laidback aesthetic that honors historical designs and works seamlessly in a modern farmhouse kitchen.

There has been a rise in incorporating freestanding kitchen ideas into modern kitchen designs. While fitted kitchens are unlikely to ever go out of style, there has been a gradual move towards more relaxed-looking kitchens.

A dresser or farmhouse kitchen island with a scrubbed timber top can be all it takes to prevent kitchens from feeling too “fitted”,’ says Merlin Wright, design director, Plain English. ‘The addition of any freestanding piece is an opportunity to add texture and variety as a counterpoint to a kitchen’s fitted cabinets – be they vintage, antique, or very crisp and modern; all bring interest and personality.’

If you're still undecided, then consider the benefits of both styles. Fitted furniture can deliver a cohesive result and be made to fit compact or awkwardly shaped rooms to maximize available space. However, freestanding pieces can be moved and rearranged to suit your needs, and enhance a homey feel, but they may not offer as much kitchen storage capacity. 

Charlie Smallbone, founder of Ledbury Studio, recommends combining fitted and freestanding options if you want visual interest and versatility. ‘Fitted furniture is best used around the working areas of the kitchen, to ensure the oven is at a suitable height, for instance, and provide storage for easy access to oven trays and dishes,’ he says. ‘The rest of the room can be furnished with freestanding pieces, which add flexibility and personality.’

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Jennifer Ebert

Jennifer is the Digital Editor at Homes & Gardens. Having worked in the interiors industry for a number of years, spanning many publications, she now hones her digital prowess on the 'best interiors website' in the world. Multi-skilled, Jennifer has worked in PR and marketing, and the occasional dabble in the social media, commercial and e-commerce space. Over the years, she has written about every area of the home, from compiling design houses from some of the best interior designers in the world to sourcing celebrity homes, reviewing appliances and even the odd news story or two.