Innumerable choices are faced by those of you building or renovating a kitchen. Just for the cabinetry you have to choose the material, frame type, door design, hardware and more.
I hate to add to your list of selections to make, but there are a couple details to take into consideration when it comes to ergonomics, too; the best way to configure your own cabinetry can make your kitchen a more comfortable and efficient workspace for you and your family.
1. Reduce uppers. Wall cabinets may be a stretch for many to get — or altogether out of reach for a few — so consider removing wall cabinets and placing in a bank of windows instead. If by doing so, you will be given a nice view, this is an move.
2. Be shallow. Instead of wall cabinets, I like to put in shallow floor-to-ceiling pantries. They are an efficient utilization of an inner wall, where you can not have a window anyhow. By limiting the depth to just 6 to 9 inches, you’re forced to line up your dry products in a single row, making everything much easier to find.
3. Go for shelves. If you really need wall-mounted storage, then consider installing a few open shelves. They are a more efficient way to store products, since you (and your guests) can see where everything is, and you also do not have to open and close cupboard doors to get items. Limit the stored items to people you use often so they are less likely to accumulate dust.
Barker Wagoner Architects
4. Lift up out. For people who want closed wall cupboard storage, then take a look at flat cabinets. There is only 1 door you need to start out to see everything from the cupboard, and you do not have to step out of how you start and shut it.
Jamie Gold, CKD, CAPS
5. Install drawers. Once it comes to base cabinets, I can not advocate drawers over doors strongly enough. Deep drawers can hold almost anything you need to store at a base cupboard. Plus, it’s a lot more efficient to just pull the drawer out and have all of the contents perspective directly in front of you than having to open two doors and root around for what you need.
Gary Lee Partners
6. Prevent corners. If you’re able to design your kitchen to not have corner cabinets, do this. Corners often create traffic jams in kitchens, and corner cabinets may be awkward to use.
The Woodshop of Avon
7. Or make the best of your corners. If you can not avoid corner closets, then at least make them as practical and easy to use as possible with fully rotating lazy Susans or clever corner drawers.
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Trueline Woodworks, Inc..
8. Upgrade cabinetry. Soft-close door hinges and drawer glides are more must-haves. It is totally worth the small additional fee for these features, which allow you to shut doors and drawers with a single efficient drive and no slamming.
9. Vary countertop heights. While the normal kitchen countertop height is 36 inches, there are many jobs which are more comfortably performed on a lesser or higher surface. This is especially true for people who are taller or shorter than average.
Typically you want your forearms to be at or near level when you’re working at the countertop. But for us tall people, that’d require a surface elevation of 42 inches or even longer — a challenging height for kids or shorter members of their family to use.
The remedy is to install areas with diverse countertop heights to accommodate the many statures of their users and their jobs. Extra storage space in the cupboard underneath is an additional upside to taller work surfaces.
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Inform us What cabinetry features have made your kitchen easier and more comfortable to work in?