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What would you include in new kitchen cabinets?


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Cabinets that go all the way to the ceiling.


I love my large deep drawers.  I have one that stores all my plastic ware, one for all of our baking goodies (we have a LOT of cookie cutters, measuring cups, etc.) and big wide drawers for utensils.


I have a big cabinet above my fridge that comes out to the edge of the fridge.  I use it for platters, big serving bowls, etc.


Make sure you plan your drawers and doors so they don't conflict with dishwashers and ovens.  


Full depth corner cabinets.  


The soft close feature is nice too.


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All of the drawers

Dividers in deep drawers

Layered drawers

Did I mention drawers?

Lazy Susan in any corner cabinets

Pull out things (basically drawers) in lower cabinets

Soft close


Tell me what a layered drawer is, please. 


I am thinking the entire bottom cabinets should be drawers.

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Everything below my counter tops is a drawer or a cabinet with a roll out shelf. I use the roll out shelves for appliances.

But I really prefer the deep drawers.

I have dividers in my utensil drawers and silverware drawers and my "junk" drawer. I have a sliding tray that sits on top,of the silverware dividers for those small pieces like kids forks.

Several cabinets are for vertical storage.

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A couple deep drawers for pots and pans.


A tall cabinet to store trays and cookie sheets vertically.


And I love our whisper-close feature. No slammed cabinets.


What she said!


I'm not a fan of lazy susans in the corners because it limits space (I store my appliances there - bread maker, rice cooker, etc.)  But they're a great idea if you maybe bake, and have smaller appliances to keep there and easily accessible.


My sister has a tall "pantry" cabinet that pulls out right next to her refrigerator. They're the same height. It pulls out like a drawer, but it's a sideways pantry, if that makes sense? She stores tall cereal boxes, drink mixes, alcohol, etc. stuff that goes with fridge stuff (milk, water, ice).

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Definitely vertical storage, and pot drawers.  But make sure that you have some spot for the tallest pots that you use regularly.  For me, that is my multiport.  I have a canning kettle but don't use that much, so I wouldn't design around it, but I use the multiport constantly, so I need to have room for it to be handy.  If the drawers are too close together that can be problematic.


But also if there is a reasonable place for this, shallow drawers for spices are really handy if you use a lot of them.


And of course a utensil drawer with dividers.


I only have one cooking oven, but I LOVE my warming oven, which is just the size of a drawer.  If that is an option for you, it's tremendously useful.  I also have a shelf on the outside of my kitchen island that folds down out of the way.  When it's up, it's a little lower than the island height so it's a great spot for using my stand mixer.  But what I think I would consider now that I have only seen online is a lower cabinet that when you open it it lifts the mixer to counter height, and then you can move it back down and out of sight when you're finished with it.  I hate lugging my mixer around, but I don't really want it out on the counter all the time, so that would really be helpful.


I wish I had a small broom closet instead of hooks on the exterior wall of the fridge enclosure.  I prefer cleaning implements to be out of sight at all times. 


Edited by Carol in Cal.
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Love drawers! Can't ever have enough drawers. A vertical narrow slot for cookie sheets and pizza pans is good.


I would have more electrical outlets, a walk in pantry, double ovens, and under cabinet lighting. I actually have under cab lighting now and LOVE it. Now I want DH to figure out how to do some mood lighting on top of the cabs.




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I've lived in many homes so that's the basis for my advice.


Drawers everywhere. One home had drawers in every lower cabinet in the kitchen. I loved it.


I second tall kitchen cabinets to the ceiling. The top of the cabinet and anything you put up there will only get dirty. If you want display cabinets, make the top small cabinets with clear glass doors and lighting,


Partitioned cabinets for cookie sheets and trays.


Make sure you have considered how things open in your kitchen. I had to remove a pull from one corner drawer because it bumped into another when open. The corner cabinets also wouldn't open all the way because the crown molding was in the way.


If you have the room, consider a trash can insert.

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Dove tail construction - no particle board! Ceiling height cabinets.


I love to bake, so we designed a baking station with drawers for baking items, cookie sheet storage, mixer, nice deep countertop for rolling out dough, etc.


Garbage drawer. Slow close on drawers and cabinets. Good lighting. Great hood vent. 6 burner gas stove. Counter height island. Pretty tile on the floor in a neat pattern - not just a grid. Big deep sink - I had a black one that I just loved!


Have you seen Houzz? It's sort of like pinterest for house planning - lots of fancy house pictures, before and afters, etc. You can search kitchens, and save your favorites. I really like the advice section...


Happy planning!

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I'd echo all the above advice, but with the amendment of no upper cabinets.


Yes, I'm serious. With enough drawers on bottom you don't really need them anyway. And instead of these huge, expensive, awkward upper cabinets that you can't reach the backs of or the top shelves without a stool....you could have windows. Lots and lots of wonderful natural light filling your space. A truly open feeling to the room.


I had a friend do this, and I secretly thought she was crazy and she'd live to regret it, but boy was I ever wrong. It has an added bonus that her kids can easily reach the cabinets to put away dishes or set the table (the soft close feature makes it hard for her littlest to go rifling through them because it takes a little strength to open them).

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It really depends on the layout of your kitchen but ours had a cabinet that was in the corner with a lot of dead space that wasn't used. When we got new cabinets we put a lazy susan cabinet in that corner and I could fit all.the.things in that bad boy! It was ridiculous how much room had been wasted. Our realtor also said that that cabinet, paired with our massive 5 drawer pantry, helped sell the house. :)

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Drawers/pull out shelves on nearly every bottom cabinet.


If I can design it...designing away from corner cabinetry.  I really have found the Lazy Susan to not be a great help, better than dead space, but not preferable to a built-in corner pantry (which, you can cover with stained-to-match wood and have custom doors made for the pantry, if you want to go high end).  Most of my newer kitchen designs, I eliminate corner cabinets wherever possible.


Tall cabinet to store baking pans.


Pull out cabinet by the stove for oils, small bottles of things (hot sauce, liquid smoke, Worcestershire sauce, etc.)


FWIW, we had all of our main dishes and bowls in drawers.  It made putting away dishes very easy for the kids (who were all much shorter at that point).  The only things in upper cabinets (of which I did not have many) were: glasses, display, spices, vitamins.


Side Panel/Cabinet on the refrigerator side for broom, mop, basic cleaning supplies.


I liked the appliances I kept out...I thought they were pretty ;)

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We have great cabinets here (outdated but great) and we are rearranging the kitchen shortly so I'm thinking about which are most valuable to me....

We have a big pantry/wardrobe type of cabinet from floor to ceiling.  It has a normal cabinet on the top part and then at about chin height it is just two long doors.  Open those and it has really large slide out shelves.  I love this cabinet.  We have wide bottom cabinets with the same slide outs.  They are great for heavy pots and pans.  I don't mind my lazy susan but I don't like the big deep corner cabinets WITHOUT a lazy susan.  They are too much effort.  I wish I had a cookie sheet rack for them to stand up straight in.  I also like my drawer with the built in dividers for silver ware - I don't have to take it out and wash it, just wipe it down, stuff doesn't get under it, and everything stays put.

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We are remodeling and it is time to pick out cabinets. What would you include?  Lots of drawers? I am just beginning, so I'd love some input.



  • Drawers for all base cabinets.
  • No blind corners; if they're unavoidable because of the layout of the kitchen, then a lazy susan or some other device that will swing out so that you never, ever have to get on your hands and knees to look for something. (I keep my small appliances on my lazy susan and it works quite well for that.)
  • One base cabinet that is *not* a drawer, with vertical dividers for things like baking sheets, muffin tins, etc.
  • A pantry, but one with drawers that are not really deep, so that things don't get lost back there.
  • Lights on the underside of the upper cabinets, so that your counters are nice and bright.
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depending upon your budget - frameless cabinets will give you as much as 30% more storage space.


a tray cabinet with dividers

my pots and pans are on pull-out trays behind doors.  much easier to access.  

blind corner - a pull out tray

cabinets clear to the ceiling. easier to clean than the top of cabinets, and adds storage.



easy to clean finish. . . . . .


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We just went through this. My suggestions:


Pullout for trash/recycle

Large, deep drawers for plastic containers/pots/pans

Nice wide, shallow drawers for kitchen tools, utensils

Pullouts next to stove for oils, spices (we have one on each side)

Some open shelving for cookbooks and displaying a few things

Paneled dishwasher that blends into the cabinets


We also put in an old-fashioned plate rack but that may or may not work with your style. Some ideas: http://www.houzz.com/ideabooks/352628/list/13-ways-to-add-a-plate-rack-to-your-kitchen

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Upper cabinets to the ceiling.


Deep drawers instead of most lower cabinets. Definitely deep drawers next to the dishwasher for every day dishes.


I don't like the appliance garages.


Vertical divided cabinet for baking pans.


Tall Vertical cabinet for broom/mop/etc.


I'm not sure what the corner solution is. A lot of people hate the lazy susan but it would be the awful corner cabinet we have. It's pathetic. 

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We did this three years ago. I love my ceiling height cabinets, my pantry cabinet with shelves that slide out, and the soft close feature of all the cabinet drawers and doors. I have some drawers on the bottom and some cabinets. I like the combination. I have one lazy susan where I store my food storage containers..Tupperware type stuff although most of mine is glass.

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A note on corner cabinets. We couldn't avoid them in our kitchen, so,I made the best of them. I saw a cabinet at Home Depot that my carpenter was able to build.

On the top, we have a clouded glass door for some architectural,interest. Inside the shelves are wooden, and don't move. There is a turn table with an edge on in the center of each shelf. Along the walls of each shelf I can use it for storage. I have my small cookie sheets for the toaster oven standing in one side, and there is extra canned goods tucked in the other sides.

I love it.


We did put in a plastic carousel,thingy on the bottom, and I totally hate it. It was a mistake I didn't catch until th carousel were already installed top and bottom, but I pitched a small fit and made him rework the top cabinet. I just love it.

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When I got to design my own kitchen, the only lower cabinets I had were under the sink, and my dishes cabs right by the dining room.  (Yes, I put those lower, because I had a great view from my kitchen, so we did all windows up high).  Everything else was drawers--oh except the back of the island, which had 6"deep shelves behind doors.  That was *great* for storing all the baking stuff that gets shoved behind all the other baking stuff and so you can never find it.  Also, the toaster fit nicely here.  


Anyway, in 2 of the drawer banks, which were on either side of the stove, I did graduated sizes.  Top:  cutting board.  Next down:  about 2" deep for utensils and spices.  (That was *wonderful* for spices.)  Third down was probably 6"-8" deep.  Potholders, towels, shallow pans, and a bunch of stuff I can't remember.  The bottom drawers took up all the rest of the space.  Pans, pots, casseroles.  


On other drawer banks, I did 3" deep at the top for silver and utensils, then 6-8" deep and I can't remember the rest.  All I know was that I loved that kitchen.  


One other really good decision we made was to use cabinet handles that looped...so no sticking out stuff that grabs your skirt or britches pockets.  I hate the ones I have now, precisely because they are grabbers.  They are very popular in design magazines but completely annoying.  Our were like a parenthesee on its side.


I agree that the soft close are *wonderful*.  


Oh, and if you can do it, put under-mount lighting under the front edge of your cabinets.  It's cheap to run and cheap to get at IKEA.  My dh just refitted our cabs; the flippers had put the undermount light at the back of the cabinet, so they lit up the *wall* underneath but nothing else.  It was a bit of a job to re-fit it all, but only because it hadn't been done right the first time.  This has really improved the lighting and the ambience in our kitchen.  


I like a modern look, so my best-ever kitchen was a flat front cabinet.  They are so much easier to keep clean.  However, I also like my simple inset cabs in this current house.  The flippers used IKEA cabs and for the most part, they are great.  I would rather they had left the dishwasher without the fancy matching cover because that is getting cruddy looking at the joints.  But the regular cabs...hodling up well and they look good.  My friend the kitchen designer was *astounded* that they were IKEA.  The flippers put a nice crown molding across the tops, and that improves the look, too.  It's too fancy a crown molding for this house, but it looks better than nothing.  


I also like that my pantry lights up when I walk into it.  I like the wall-mounted spice racks that we added (because this house is short on drawers).


One thing to think about that I don't like about our current kitchen is what you do with garbage, recycle and composting.  Our kitchen has only one space, really, which is a pull-out trash bin...which I like...but I wish they had also put a recycle bin in that pull-out.  It would have been helpful.


I happen not to care much for glass fronts on cabinets, and we have a few of those.  If you do glass fronts, you want them on something that will look pretty behind them and you don't want them over your gas stove where grease and gas leftovers collect.  Ugh.  Also, I don't particularly find it attractive to look at peanut-butter  jars and Worcestershire sauce bottles.  But that's where they go, in the glass-front cabs.  So think this one through!!  :0)



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Also make sure that you leave plenty of room for a fridge and stove. Our current home had a smaller opening for the fridge and we were limited to ONE model with water in the door as that was the only one that would fit in my space (yet they have a 3 inch spacer one cabinet over :-( )


Think of what you use and where you like things.

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Depends on your house layout.


My previous kitchen had a bank of drawers, deep and large enough for a crockpot or two in some of them.  It had nine drawers altogether in that bank along one wall, plus tall cabinets above it.  In place of one cabinet, DH put shelves for cookbooks.  Along a different wall, we had a small space and put a thin cabinet in it for cookie sheets.  Also, the fridge was the end of the kitchen, but on the other side of it, we put a large cabinet for storing larger serving pieces.  Oh, man, that was a nice kitchen.  Fairly simple but very usable.  I was sorry to say goodbye to it.


No open cabinets.  I'm not a big fan of glass fronts or open shelves for dishes.  I much prefer the uniform look of closed wood front cabinets, but that's just a personal preference.

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