Insets: Built-in Wall Niches and How to Use Them

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Image: Matthew Williams for Dwell

More and more modern homes are being built with interesting features that seem tailor-made for the people who are first to move in and live in them. That’s one of the obvious benefits of a new build or remodel—you can have things exactly as you want them to be. But what if you’re the next person to inhabit a home with a feature designed for the original owner? Let’s take a look at one example of this—the built-in wall niche.


This shallow niche above the bed looks great with small-framed photographs lined up. It’s a great use of the space but I could also imagine that area being home to a row of candles (careful not to burn the gorgeous woodwork!) or even an army of Lego characters. As I often say, let your imagination be your guide and do something that reflects your personality.

Insets- Built-in Wall Niches and How to Use Them on the Interior CollectiveImage: You Are The River


Who wouldn’t use this niche for storing firewood? It’s such a natural location for that. But why not also install removable shelving and make a display area for favorite objects and art?

Insets- Built-in Wall Niches and How to Use Them on the Interior CollectiveImage: DigsDigs

Kitchen Display

Look closely at this kitchen and you’ll see that’s a niche above the backsplash. A perfect location to display cooking related items or favorite glassware. It would also work well as a spice rack.

Insets- Built-in Wall Niches and How to Use Them on the Interior CollectiveImage: Planete Deco

Kitchen Books

One of the best things about built-in wall niches in the kitchen is you have plenty of options for how to use them. Often, you can let the shape and size of a kitchen niche dictate what goes inside. Cookbooks work great in this example.

Do you have built-in wall niches in your house? How do you use them?

1 Comment

  1. nice 😉 wishing you we’ll, dave…

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Dave Hime, founder/curator of, has been an interior design addict for as long as he can remember. In 2005, he bought a house-in-progress and missed several opportunities to have an influence on his own home decor–leaving him wanting more. With design heroes such as Blake Dollahite ( and Robert & Cortney Novogratz (, Dave began seeking out online resources that would exemplify the interior design practices he's most drawn to: using color, texture and simple materials well. Bringing all of this together, along with his specific focus on providing interior design inspiration from a man's point of view, is Dave's mission: masculine design.