If you don't own a dishwasher, invest in a good dish rack—it can mean the difference between whether or not you enjoy doing the dishes. No, really...it sounds like hyperbole, but I've been through the experience of upgrading from a cheap model to a nice dish rack (from Simple Human) and it changed the way I felt about my daily dish-washing chores.
Most of Simple Human's dish racks come with 5-year warranties. Although they cost a little more, they're well-made pieces with superior drainage. Find them at Simple Human's online shop or in chain retailers like Bed, Bath & Beyond or Target. (Their Steel Frame Rack is shown in the photo above.)
Polder sells a number of small stainless steel dish racks, like the 6.5-inch-wide Compact Dish Rack for $25. They also carry several in-sink drainers, and you can find them at chain stores or on the web at Polder.com.
This Scandinavian superstore has a few smart, space-saving dish rack designs, including the wall-mounted Grundtal drainer ($11 - $25), the double-decker Ordning ($20), and the folding Kvot ($9). All are inexpensive, and the metal ones hold up fairly well over time.
MoMA Design Store
They carry some of the best designer dish racks, including Marc Newson's Dish Doctor, $70. It has a removable drip tray, and while it comes in glossy orange and green at most retailers, the MoMA Store carries the modern white version.
Fante's Kitchen Wares Shop
This online store has a good selection of old-fashioned wooden plate racks by Woodform that range from $50 to $120. The racks can be mounted to the wall or set on the counter, and they have an open bottom that allows plates to drip dry.
With a huge online inventory, Amazon stocks a few dish racks that are hard to find elswhere, like the RSVP Endurance In-Sink Dish Rack for $28. It's a stainless steel rack that can be placed in the sink or used on the counter, and it's compact at just 5.5 inches wide.
Black and Blum
Their High and Dry Dish Rack ($49) folds flat, so it's great for someone who has a dishwasher but needs an extra drying rack for dinner parties. The angular form was inspired by contemporary architecture.
This online store carries pretty much every line of cooking tool you could imagine, including some of the harder-to-find ones. They have dish racks by OXO, Better Housewares, InterDesign, Polder, Progressive, Simple Human, and RSVP—including the $55 Endurance by RSVP, shown left.
Tse & Tse
This French retailer carries some gorgeous and pricey stainless steel dish racks that are made in India. The small, wall-mounted stainless steel drainer is €232 plus shipping, and you can order it online and have it shipped internationally.
• Top Ten Dish Racks
• A Dish Rack Roundup for Those without Dishwashers
• 7 Ways to Enjoy Doing the Dishes
Top Photo: SimpleHuman Steel Frame Dish Rack