Photo: IKEA

The IKEA KALLAX shelf has become the ubiquitous (read: boring) storage for college students and 20-somethings alike. But, when you need to fit into a space that has not only a width restriction, but an awkward height one as well, you look elsewhere. And that’s where the LIXHULT comes in.

Photo: IKEA

Unlike the typical IKEA storage fare, the LIXHULT line is all metal and comes in a multitude of colors (blue, pink, white, gray, red, orange, and green) and sizes. I purchased this combination, which features two taller cabinets (one red, and one blue), and a square cabinet in either orange or green. It houses all of our pantry items, from snacks (sweet and salty separated by a shelf), to spices, to oils, and pasta.

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The only space I had for a pantry was against a wall outside of the kitchen, which also had the kitchen light switch on it. The asymmetry of the three cabinets allowed maximum storage, without blocking the switch or getting something too tall that I wasn’t able to reach. Yes, that’s an issue I took into consideration. I don’t need to use a step stool to get some dang garlic powder.

Each larger cabinet has a shelf that’s adjustable and the doors are all magnetic. You can buy them separately or in a bundle, though you don’t end up saving any money if you buy them all together. You can mix-and-match all sizes, with anchors to attach them together. The functionality of it is outstanding, but it was the unique, non-IKEA look of it really sold me.

The LIXHULT line is the minimal, (mostly) easy-to-put-together style that IKEA excels at, except without the peg holes and specialty screws. The mismatched nature of the sizes and colors makes it 1000x more visually interesting than a KALLAX could ever be, with the same ease of style.