7 foot tall fridge, 8 foot ceilings

aokat15August 26, 2010

Hi all - when we designed our addition, including our kitchen, we thought we would have 9 foot ceilings. We bought a 7 foot tall fridge during that time. A few weeks ago during construction we ran across a structural issue with the support beams and roof. Our structural engineer said we had to go 8 foot ceilings to make it work, so we did. I'm meeting again with our cabinet guy tomorrow and we need to finalize our cabinet order. Given that we only have a foot above the fridge including molding, what would you do in terms of the cabinet above? We could just have an open shelf there, we could do a very narrow cabinet (maybe for serving platters or something?) or we could just not have a functional cabinet. What do you think?

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Hi aokat,

How about a couple horizontal shelves to put your cookie sheets, etc.?

Or a short, wide basket that you can pull out for items not used often? Maybe teas, hot chocolate or things you don't access every day.

It will be fun reading all the replies you will get. Don't you just love a challenge?

Let us know what you end up with. :)

    Bookmark   August 26, 2010 at 1:57PM
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WE built a small cabinet with a flip up door above the builtin 7ft fridge. We use it to keep serving platters, cake plates etc. Put a pneumatic hinge to keep the door propped open when you need it.

Dont leave an open shelf there - grease magnet !

    Bookmark   August 26, 2010 at 2:37PM
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Don't forget to take into account the air gap over the fridge (check the specs to see how much it needs). You'll likely lose another inch or two.

It's hard to answer this without knowing what the tops of your other (adjacent) cabinets look like. If they have doors and crown mouldings, I think you'll want to have a cabinet, even if it is really "short". Good for sliding in a wok, or trays/baking sheets though! I don't think I'd go for an open shelf (unless of course the walls next to the fridge are bare) because it would either be really deep, or really hard to access. Could be nice for decorative pieces though.

    Bookmark   August 26, 2010 at 2:38PM
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Skin on plywood with a little bottom molding - like the light rail if you have one.

If the adjacent cabinets have 3" crown and you need an inch or two for air circulation, and you lose about 1.5" for frameless cabinetry sides or 3" for framed -- a potential cabinet would be at most 5.5" tall or pretty much one top drawer with a usable depth closer to 3".

Seven feet up.

    Bookmark   August 26, 2010 at 2:57PM
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pharoah - I really like that idea - do you happen to have a pick of that cabinet maybe open and close? Thanks so much!!

    Bookmark   August 26, 2010 at 3:02PM
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We have a door something like Pharaoh's. It opens up and out on a hinge. We did not have enough room to have it slide into the top. We keep serving pieces up there that we do not use often - like the Thanksgiving and holiday platters. Hopefully you are taller than I am - (5'2 and shrinking) - a nearby stool comes in very handy!

    Bookmark   August 26, 2010 at 5:34PM
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We have this exactly - I ordered a 12 inch cabinet and plan on putting the rarely used up there but keeping the kids lunch bags up front. Demo starts Monday!!!


    Bookmark   August 26, 2010 at 7:31PM
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I am not aware of / couldn't find a fridge 7'tall (82"-84") that was not built in or fully-integrated so there should not be a need for a gap any larger than is necessary to get the unit into place, so you may have a bit more room to work with than you would with a freestanding fridge that needs air circulation above.
12"-3" =9" exterior dimension.

If you Do need air circulation above you could always go with a 12" deep upper cabinet toward the front with airspace behind it and perhaps an airvent into an adjacent room behind the fridge.

    Bookmark   August 26, 2010 at 8:22PM
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We thought our ceilings were 8', they turned out to be 7'9". This was discovered after we had already picked an 80" Liebherr refrigerator (built-in with custom panels). Above the fridge is just a panel that matches the cabinet doors. It was just too small of a space for a cabinet. I really don't care about the loss of a cabinet above the fridge b/c it is so high and I would have had to use a stool each time to reach into it.

    Bookmark   August 26, 2010 at 10:12PM
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dang this new ipad. I can't figure out how to cut and paste pics from my photo bucket account here.

I've had it for five mins so forgive me. I'll explain what I have and try to get a pic tomorrow (it's in photobucket igloochic lake house kitchen if you know how to search photo bucket).

Anyhoo I had the same problem and I love our solution which was a fridge debth cabinet which is open in the front (just a 9" opening and then molding). In the back of the deep cab I keep trays and serving platters we only use for parties. But in front of those I have my yellow ware bowls and they are a lovely accent for the kitchen plus easy to reach since we have a kick stool in the kitchen. It's a very functional space.

    Bookmark   August 27, 2010 at 12:45AM
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aokat, no photo of it open. But here is the closed photo. It is 24" deep, 4ft wide and about 9" tall. It housed platters etc. I keep a step stool close by (always need one in kitchen to organize upper shelves anyway).
I am pleased with how it turned out...

    Bookmark   August 27, 2010 at 3:19AM
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Circus Peanut

Pharoah's is a really gorgeous solution.

My more modest kitchen has 8' ceilings and a Liebherr. We just made an open cabinet in the fridge surround, where I store lesser-used items (fondue pots, spaetzle press, Aebelskiver pans). I don't use a stepstool, I just holler for my tall guy. ;-)
I haven't found it to be unduly greasy up there, but every kitchen is different.

    Bookmark   August 27, 2010 at 9:13AM
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I've got cookie sheets and baking pans above my oven, but a spot like that would be great for platters, trays and such. I'd capture it and would prefer a door on it like pharaoh's, but it could be trimmed like bmore was describing and be kind of a secret door.

    Bookmark   August 27, 2010 at 9:34AM
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