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.
- Simplehuman: 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: 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.
- IKEA: 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.
- Amazon.com: 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.
- Cooking.com: 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.