Can a 1 ft. wide tall cab be useful?

Fori is not pleasedApril 9, 2014

Howdy! I have a 1 ft wide cabinet between the proposed fridge and the end of the run (to allow the fridge to open). The cabinet--along with the lower cabinets in the run--will be ~30" deep. Upper cabinets will be 18" deep.

Is 1 foot even worth having? Should I eat into the counter space and make it bigger? Any other suggestions on layout of this wall? The range will probably be only 30" but is drawn as 36" (but hood will stay 36").

There is an island directly across from this with DW and main sink.

What a terrible scan! Numbers from left to right are 2' 1.5", 3', 3' (stove), 2' 6", 18" (sink), 2', 3' 8.5" (fridge hole), 1', wall.


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Fori is not pleased

This is the overall layout--kitchen is squeezed into the back corner of a family room.

The O represents a small oven and microwave stacked. I could swap fridge for oven but the fridge is a huge monstrosity that would be less offensive on the other wall...not sure about that entirely...

    Bookmark   April 9, 2014 at 6:44PM
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Broom closet?

    Bookmark   April 9, 2014 at 6:52PM
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If it has a pull-out it could be very useful. I had that in my old kitchen as I had a foot I needed to fill. A pull-out broom closet would be great or it can be used for pantry stuff. I used mine for stuff like boxes of pasta, rice, flour, sugar etc. It was perfect size for that.

    Bookmark   April 9, 2014 at 6:58PM
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There's an ikea hack that shows that kind of space as a broom closet over on the ikea fans forum. Might be worth seeing what they did just as an example.

    Bookmark   April 9, 2014 at 7:11PM
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At 12" wide by 30" deep, you would have room for a very nice pullout configured as a drop zone for purses, keys, briefcases, phone charging shelf, coats, hats, gloves, umbrella, shoes, perhaps even a calendar if you do a paper version. It could be vented, top and bottom inside the cabinet, through to that wall adjoining the laundry, so you could hang damp coats and they could still dry. It is in a great location for all that (unless you have that all covered in the laundry). It could also be a great pullout command center.

    Bookmark   April 9, 2014 at 7:14PM
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I have a pullout in mine. It holds all my canned and packaged food and frees up the cabinets for dishware. I do use one upper for baking products. The small upper over the pullout is my cutting board and tray storage.

    Bookmark   April 9, 2014 at 7:19PM
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Fori is not pleased

Thanks all. I feel more comfortable with it! There are options and they aren't bad! Whew. I was just drawing out things on my current counter and thinking "gee that's narrow".

The drop zone and command center is interesting. I think we're likely to dump all that stuff in the laundry room since it's connected to the garage, though. (We do already, although it's not a laundry room yet.) But maybe...someday...organization! That would be cool!

    Bookmark   April 9, 2014 at 7:22PM
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We made a 12" broom/cleaning supply closet. Love it. If we would have had room somewhere to do another 12" tall, I would have done a pullout for canned supplies, etc.

    Bookmark   April 9, 2014 at 7:54PM
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Had exactly the same situation in my kitchen and since I was determined not to waste a bit of my precious space we put in a broom/cleaning supply closet. Here is the view with the door closed:

And open (this was taken just after remodeling; there are brooms hung in the empty area now):

    Bookmark   April 9, 2014 at 8:19PM
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Fori is not pleased


Okay. Whatever it is, it's gonna pull out, way out!

    Bookmark   April 9, 2014 at 8:25PM
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Looks like we will have that same thing in our kitchen I actually thought it might be a good liqour cabinet/pantry.

    Bookmark   April 9, 2014 at 8:38PM
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I have one on each side of my counter depth fridge and love them. Both open on the 24" side, not the 12" side. One is dry good storage, and the depth is perfect for that, especially cereal boxes and Oxo pop-canisters. The other side is a drop leaf standing desk/drop zone, topped by file shelves with a shredder cubby underneath. All three levels on that side have their own doors, and have electrical outlets, and we have a charging shelf for phones and iPods. After all this custom work, we opted not to pay for the dry goods side to be a pull out, and saved, IIRC, $2k in hardware, trim, etc. In hindsight, this was a good compromise. I think I like doors better than I'd have liked a pull out. A broom closet would also be a superb use of the space.

    Bookmark   April 9, 2014 at 9:58PM
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MizLizzie- I'm intrigued, would you mind posting pics?

    Bookmark   April 9, 2014 at 10:04PM
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Frameless vs framed will make a big difference in the available space for a 12" cabinet. We don't have a 12" wide tall cabinet, but we have 3 12" wide cabinets as part of our island. Here are some pictures to show what can fit in that width of frameless cabinet. It should be similar for what can fit in a pull out like Running in place shows because we lose some space on the pull out shelves to clear the door hinges.

Insert for food processor accessories (custom made by my DH)

We also have two 12" deep by 24" wide cabinets on the back of the island that we access from the 24" side like Andreak describes and if a side is accessible, that's a good option too. For example in your case, could some or all of the cabinet be built to open into your laundry for storage there? You might even gain some depth using the width of the wall as part of the cabinet.

    Bookmark   April 9, 2014 at 10:19PM
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Fori is not pleased

I had one similar to what MizLizzie describes a few kitchens ago, but with a corner cut off because we are clumsy.

If I could do side-access here, that wouldn't have concerned me a bit--but since we will only have access to this from the front it'll almost have to be a pullout to be useful. Well, I think so. I guess I'm off to measure my arms now. :)

    Bookmark   April 9, 2014 at 10:19PM
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Fori is not pleased

Thanks for those, Cloud swift. Still loving that kitchen but hadn't checked out your drawers before :P

We haven't selected cabinets yet but frameless would definitely make a difference. So I'll go measure my arms AND my crockpot! If 12" isn't enough, I'm sure it's almost enough and I can steal a few inches more if needed.

We could probably build it into the laundry room, but I was planning on sticking my old freezer there.

    Bookmark   April 9, 2014 at 10:37PM
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I'm putting a tall pantry pullout mechanism (Hafele brand) in a 13" wide frameless cabinet. The Hafele "Arena Plus Trays" come in a variety of widths depending on how much interior clearance the cabinet has.

Member "a2gemini" has a photo of her pullout cabinet, which I believe is about 12" wide. Her photo is towards the bottom of the linked thread. Others posted there as well,

Here is a link that might be useful: Tall Pantry Pullout

    Bookmark   April 9, 2014 at 11:27PM
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Kathy Rivera

I'm assuming the cabinet is next to a wall? Can you you remove that wall? If so, you can turn the cabinet 90 degrees and have a 30" wide, 12" deep pantry that will be SO useful!

    Bookmark   April 10, 2014 at 8:19AM
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I'm glad to hear all the broom closet/pull out suggestions.

I was thinking by the title that you'd be putting in regular 12" cabs, to which I was going to scream, "Noooooooooo"

Talk about totally worthless.

I must ask cloud_swift why (barring any symmetry we can't see) she wasted space with 3 12" rather than 2 18"ers? Particularly when she went to all the trouble to gain what, 3/4" each with frameless? Imagine what could have been stored there!

Anyway, love the ideas and can't wait to see what you do!

    Bookmark   April 10, 2014 at 8:41AM
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Fori is not pleased

Thanks! I can't lose my wall. Need it!

I have seen those pullout pantries before and it just didn't register that some are so narrow! Even so, I think that I will shrink the range to a sensible 30" and kick 3-6" of that over to the pantry. I'll lose a little upper cab space but no lower. Just a smaller stove which is perfectly fine.

I have large awkward things that I'd assumed would end up in the laundry room again but they would be great in a pullout, even if it is a PITA pullout which it wouldn't even have to be. Crockpot, bread machine, rice cooker, toaster, canning pot, stock pot, etc. I think it would be useful.

    Bookmark   April 10, 2014 at 10:29AM
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I have that same set up, with a 12 in frameless cabinet next to my fridge. It has a pull out pantry insert, and I find for the two of us it holds plenty! If you add 3-6 in, it might start to get awkward. Maybe look at two stacked medium size pull outs instead of a larger one?

    Bookmark   April 10, 2014 at 11:02AM
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Texas Gem, here is the overall picture. The right side is dry good storage, two doors over two doors. The left side opens facing our garage door, and is the three sectioned drop/office zone. I will post a pic below. Still have not mastered the multi-pic posting technique.

    Bookmark   April 10, 2014 at 11:03AM
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Here is the office side, open. It looks much nicer closed. ;-) If i had it to do over again, I would opt for a 15" drop desk rather than an 18" because the weight is a tad much on the Blum hinges, and it is almost too deep for me to reach all the way in to the back of the cabinet.

    Bookmark   April 10, 2014 at 11:05AM
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I wish there was room for one in my kitchen!! Check this out:

Here is a link that might be useful: Pull Out Pantry for Small Spaces

    Bookmark   April 10, 2014 at 11:41AM
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I have those Hafele "arena plus" trays and they're great because they're melamine surface and VERY easy to clean. I use them in my condiment pull-out.

    Bookmark   April 10, 2014 at 11:42AM
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Yes! I have a filler area that is tiny and narrow and it is perfect for my cutting boards.

    Bookmark   April 10, 2014 at 11:45AM
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It wasn't any trouble to gain the extra space from frameless. A cabinet line that we liked had frameless cabinets available. And we gain both width and height in drawer stacks from being frameless. An inch or so of extra height per drawer works out to be significant in a kitchen with multiple drawer stacks. we have 4 and 5 drawer cabinets where we get an extra drawer because of frameless.

We have 2 of the 12" wide cabinets because our island base is 3' by 8'. There is a 24" row of cabinets facing into the kitchen. Behind that there is another 12" row of cabinets. The middle ones of those are 12" deep fixed shelf cabinets opening under the overhang but for the end ones we had them oriented to open to the sides of the island instead of the back. That is more convenient to access then having to reach under the 15" island overhang.

One of the 12" wide cabinets on the back of the island holds all our large flat oven stuff: baking sheets, cookie sheets, cooling racks; plus a bunch of cake pans. And it is right at our baking area. Baking supplies, bread machine and mixer are across the aisle from it and the counter above it are where we usually roll dough and load baking pans. That all fits in the 12" and if it was wider, I'm not sure what else we would put in that form factor of space that we would use close to it.

The other on the side of the island is right near the prep sink and holds cutting boards, the food processor accessories, and some other stuff like the immersion blender.

The third 12" cabinet faces the front of the island. We had 8' for the island which has a 24" cabinet for the prep sink, a 24" cabinet that holds the microwave plus a couple of drawers, a 36" cabinet with the rangetop above it. That leaves 12". We didn't have room to make the island wider so the only way to make that cabinet wider would be to reduce one of the others. We considered a 30" rangetop, but we like the functionality of the 36". When two of us are using it at the same time, we appreciate the elbow room. We like the large prep sink and wouldn't want to reduce the space between the prep sink and the rangetop even if we were willing to have the microwave moved somewhere else. So that left 12" for the last cabinet. It holds all of the frequently used bottled items at a very convenient location in our kitchen so it is big enough for its purpose.

That is why we have 3 12" cabinets rather than 2 18" ones - the 36" aren't all in the same location where we could have combined them.

    Bookmark   April 10, 2014 at 12:28PM
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We have 2 12'' x 30'' deep pullouts and I love them. This one is my double row spice rack. The rack in the front is one my father made for me 25 years ago and I have moved it from VA to CT and back. I asked our cabinet maker if there might be some way to include it in our design and he created this amazing cabinet with my dad's (formerly backless) rack in the front. It slides forward or back as needed to reveal the rack in the back as well. I have found the 12'' cabinets to be a very good use of small spaces.

    Bookmark   April 10, 2014 at 12:55PM
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According to your drawing, the cabinet in question is next to a 24" fridge.

If so and it is your only fridge, you may wish to re-think that. We got a 30" CD one a few years ago thinking it was enough but we were thoroughly mistaken.

That Hafele pantry insert is very expensive, plus the cabinetry work to build in. If it were me, I'd use that money to get a 36" fridge.

And think of re-sale, unless this is your forever house.

Just my 2 cents...

    Bookmark   April 10, 2014 at 1:17PM
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Kathy Rivera


I think you might be mis-reading the plan? It's not super easy to read, but I clearly see 3' - something. It actually looks like a total of 42" allocated for the fridge and surround.

    Bookmark   April 10, 2014 at 1:56PM
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fori put down in the original post that the fridge hole is: 3' 8.5" (fridge hole) - giving a total off 44.5" for the fridge area.

sum - I love that spice "rack", and how wonderful to have something that your dad made for you travel around with you during your moves. I hope this is in your "forever house", but if it isn't, be sure to take the part that was made by your dad when you go to your next location.

    Bookmark   April 10, 2014 at 2:06PM
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Fori is not pleased

These are so cool. I've never had one!

Yes, we're planning for a 42" fridge, probably the despised side-by-side type! The particular inch-by-inch specifics will vary based on cabinet type; we'll use a local cabinet maker who will work off the appliance specs but I'd like to get things pretty close first.

    Bookmark   April 10, 2014 at 5:21PM
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We just got rid of one. It was 12" wide and went floor to ceiling and 24" deep. I hated it. It had an upper and lower door with shelves inside. It was too narrow to maneuver anything in it and I had to take out other things in order to get what I wanted. It would have been fine if it was a pullout.

    Bookmark   April 10, 2014 at 8:36PM
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At home linked to a post which has pictures of our kessbohmer(sp)
In the post, I mention this is one item that fashion over function won.
I love it but a side door cabinet would hold more.
I think our total width is 13(or -12)
Extra liquor on top cubby, snacks in the middle and sports nutrition on the bottom shelves.
DH can find his treats all by himself!

    Bookmark   April 10, 2014 at 10:38PM
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Andrea, thanks for the kind words. Yes, this is our forever home. Do you think I can hang my spice rack in my room in the nursing home? ;)

    Bookmark   April 10, 2014 at 11:55PM
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HI Fori!!

Mine is narrower but has the 6' tall spice rack. :) (The other one opens sideways with doors for pitchers, vases and cookbooks.)

Isn't it Circuspeanut who has deep rollout tray shelves but no door? That was pretty awesome, though probably not so good next to the fridge.

Re cabinets, you can get a little more in frameless no matter what, but if you prefer framed, you can do a faux frame full overlay just on the pullout.

Glad to see your new kitchen is getting done!

    Bookmark   April 11, 2014 at 1:16AM
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Some really, really cool ideas! I wish I had come across this thread earlier - I definitely would have incorporated some of these ideas!

    Bookmark   May 18, 2014 at 7:53AM
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