Make it Count: Smart Uses for the Space Below Upper Kitchen Cabinets

published May 24, 2017
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(Image credit: The House Diaries)

In a small kitchen, you have to take advantage of all the space you can find—which is why if you’re not using the space underneath your kitchen cabinets, you’re doing it wrong. Whether you’re making use of the wall space just above your counters or tacking things right onto the underside of the cabinets, there are tons of uses for this underused space that will free up both your counters and some of the space from inside your cabinets—and your kitchen can still look clean, uncluttered and beautiful, too.

Need some inspiration to get you started? Here are totally functional—and aesthetically pleasing—under-cabinet storage and organization ideas.

Add a Display Shelf

If you want room to display particularly pretty serving dishes, cookbooks and other knickknacks, try adding a shelf just below your cabinets like The House Diaries did above—it’ll show them off without cluttering up your counters.

(Image credit: Apartment Therapy)

Hang a DIY Utensil Rack

Another way to use the wall space directly under your cabinets: create a simple DIY utensil rack (instructions for the one above are at A Beautiful Mess).

(Image credit: Amy Herr)

Add a Floating Dish Drainer

Don’t let your dish drying rack take up all your precious counter space—take a cue from this example on Kitchn and mount your drying rack on the wall just below your cabinets to save space.

(Image credit: KegWorks)

Mount a Wine Rack Underneath

The space under your cabinets is also a great place to store wine bottles and glasses—a rack like this one from KegWorks can help.

(Image credit: Life Arranged)

Add Hooks for Hanging Mugs

If coffee or tea are more your thing, save cabinet space by hanging hooks under your cabinets and storing your mugs that way. Get inspired by this example from Life Arranged.

(Image credit: Jules Blog/IKEA Hackers)

Use Pot Rails to Store Cutting Boards

Need a space to store your cutting boards? Jules at IKEA Hackers spotted this clever use of a pot rail under a shelf at IKEA, and you can easily copy it with your cabinets at home.

(Image credit: Swoon Worthy)

…Or to Hang Mugs and Utensils

Those pot rails can also come in handy for hanging utensils, mugs and other kitchen supplies, as seen in the example above from Swoon Worthy.

(Image credit: Kitchn)

…Or Even for Baskets of Fruit

Another use for a rail? Hang baskets of fruit (or any other foods or kitchen items that might fit) to keep them off the counter, like in this example on Kitchn.

(Image credit: Organize It)

Install a Pull-Out Knife Rack

You can also stow away your kitchen knives in a slide-out drawer below your cabinets—this one is available at Organize It.

(Image credit: VinTin/Etsy)

Hang a Paper Towel Dispenser

Rather than use a standing paper towel holder that takes up a spot on your counter, install a holder like this one from VinTin on Etsy to dispense them easily and save space.

(Image credit: HGTV)

Store Jars of Food and Spices

The space under your cabinets is also great for hanging jars of food (spices also work, FYI) like in the example above from HGTV. This tutorial involves screwing the lids into the bottoms of your cabinets, but you can also use magnets if you prefer.