9' ceilings, cabinets to ceiling - cabinet height?

seosmpFebruary 19, 2013


My kitchen has 9' ceilings. I will be having the cabinets/crown go to the ceiling (due to pipes/etc.).

For those who have 9' ceilings and cabinets to the ceiling, what is the cabinet height, and how tall is the crown?

I was going with 42" cabinets and this would leave about 12" for the crown. I do want a nice built-up crown, but I don't know that 12" will look ok. The cabinetmaker can make taller cabinets, so I was considering 45" cabinets with 9" crown.

If you could include pictures, that would be really helpful!


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We did cabinets to the ceiling with crown and 9' high. You can check out my whole project at the link below with all sorts of details including measurements.

I believe our upper cabinets are 46 inches, so you get an idea of how that looks. I think much taller built up crown might look a little top heavy, depending on your overall situation. Ours was a 'small' room of 10x14.

Here is a link that might be useful: My kitchen

    Bookmark   February 19, 2013 at 7:39PM
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Mine are 30" + 14" stacked for a total of 44", but we started 20" above the countertops and not the more usual 18".

Our measurements are 36" base + 20" backsplash + 44" uppers + 4" fascia + 5" crown. I know that seems like an extra inch in total but the 5" crown gets angled so it's less tall after installation. Total actual fascia+crown height after installation is 8". (I hope that makes sense -- it sounded clearer in my head!!)

    Bookmark   February 19, 2013 at 7:56PM
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Just did the quick math on ours and I think we're around 6.5 inches of trim above the upper cabinets. Our uppers are 19 3/4 inches above the counters, but then there are light boxes eating up 2 or so inches of that hanging off the bottom of the upper cabinets.

    Bookmark   February 19, 2013 at 9:47PM
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Ours are 19.5" above the counter, stacked cabinets 18" on top of 31" with 3.5" moulding. Our moulding is super simple to match the rest of the moulding in our house, so that's why we left a small amount of space there--you want more space if you're doing more complicated moulding.

    Bookmark   February 19, 2013 at 11:41PM
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I would recommend 36" counter height, 18" clearance to uppers, and 4-10" crown including built-up molding; 6" moldings would leave 48" for uppers. Since no one is tall enough to reach the top of the upper cabinets, I would consider double stacked uppers, 36" cabinets and 12" of stacked glass cabinets.

Contemporary Kitchen design by Toronto Interior Designer Shirley Meisels

If you have very traditional cabinets, consider using 36" cabinets + 6" moldings with 12" of open space above uppers. If you have some focal points (sink, range) pulled forward a few inches, it will add a lot of visual interest, and the open space will give the appearance of a larger, more spacious kitchen.

Traditional Kitchen design by Chicago Design-build Oakley Home Builders

    Bookmark   February 20, 2013 at 3:00AM
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Our ceilings are 9' 1" and we will be having 36" lowers and 18" between lower and uppers. The moulding above cabinets is a one inch rounded edge board stacked with a 1 x five and a 5.25" inch cove crown on top of that.

Traditional Kitchen design by Charleston Interior Designer Linda McDougald Design : Postcard from Paris Home

    Bookmark   February 20, 2013 at 8:43AM
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Annie Deighnaugh

We went with a crown and a soffit...the uppers are about 38".

    Bookmark   February 20, 2013 at 9:11AM
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Thanks for reminding me, quiltgirl. I forgot to mention, if you leave a cove (gap between uppers and ceiling), cove lighting is de rigueur.

Traditional Kitchen design by San Francisco Architect Sutton Suzuki Architects

    Bookmark   February 20, 2013 at 12:34PM
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Thanks for all the responses and pictures!

I can't really stagger the heights since I do have piping/PVC in some areas of the existing soffits. My original plan was to stagger until I opened up the soffits!

I also do plan to use 15" deep cabinets to add some interest to the depth (center cabinets will be deeper and glass, corner cabinet will be deeper and piece above sink will be recessed slightly). The cooktop is also being bumped out (w/ angled posts) and I will have an apron front stainless sink. I'm hoping that all will add some interest to the cabinets. BTW, the dimension of the kitchen space is 14'x14' but it's wide open to the eat-in area which is around 12'x14' which is then open to a family room

I do have a follow-up question though. If I have undercabinet lighting with moulding to cover it, should the 18" from the counter to cabinet be to the bottom of the moulding? That pushes up the cabinets slightly (but doesn't help me with reaching since I'm pretty short!).


    Bookmark   February 20, 2013 at 5:36PM
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It doesn't have to be 18" to the bottom of the light rail molding, no. It can be whatever is comfortable for you to reach into on a daily basis -- as long as you can still fit whatever appliances want to store on the counter underneath the light rail.

If you have any tall appliances that you want to keep out on the counter then i would just measure them to ensure they will fit. And assuming they fit fine, I would put the cabs themselves at 18" height max since you say you are of shorter stature. The most important thing is that you are comfortable using your cabinetry on a daily basis, otherwise it's really all for naught.

    Bookmark   February 20, 2013 at 6:25PM
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