Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Kitchen Remodel: Ikea Love

Last week when I shared some photos of our kitchen after our diy tile backsplash, I also gave you a sneak peak of something else we'd done in the kitchen but I hadn't spilled the beans about on this here ole' blog yet.

Can you spot it?

We added an organizational rail system from Ikea to the empty area on the wall to the left.

See, back before this blog even existed and we were installing our new laminate flooring, we realized that any kitchen layout changes needed to be made right-then-and-there. So, we decided to add a new bottom cabinet - because funnily enough, the existing layout didn't have a bottom cabinet for storage pots and pans and such - nope, there were just drawers, a lazy susan, the cabinet under the sink, and several very thin cabinets for storing cutting boards, which left us high and dry for anywhere at all to store our stockpots and other large cooking items (and Barley's food!).

So we bought a new unfinished cabinet from Lowe's, and removed the door from an upper cabinet to replace the shaker-style door the new cabinet came with. Thank goodness that open cabinets are in - because we looked and looked and they don't make this style of cabinet doors anymore!

Old photo showing the new
cabinet addition with paint and door.

Anyways, the new cabinet has been amazing and gives us tons of much-needed storage, and not to mention even more much-needed countertop space! But the new addition left us with an awkward situation:

Yup, a blank section of the wall.

We considered numerous options:

1) An additional upper cabinet - which we shot down because we didn't think we would find one to match our cabinets from 1968, and it would make the dining area feel more closed-in.

2) Floating shelves like the ones in our dining area  - which we also shot down because we thought they would look odd next to the open cabinet, not to mention that we already had some in our dining area.

3) Or some sort of artwork - which we shot down because we wanted something that contributed to the function of our kitchen, and something that made the new cabinet addition seem like an intended part of the kitchen.

So for a year now we've been stumped.

That is, until my parents kindly offered to bring us some Ikea loot when they drive up to Nebraska from their home in Florida (it's no fun being 1300 miles from the nearest Ikea!). After spending hours scouring the Ikea website and trying to figure out what-the-heck-that-odd-looking-thing-is-for-and-which-organization-system-it-goes-with (seriously, those small kitchen organization parts are so confusing online!),we found the perfect solution: a rail system.

To install it, Tom made the appropriate measurements:

Inserted a couple of drywall anchors:

And simply drilled in some screws.

Total awesomeness.

It instantly added an industrial kitchen-type feel to the area, and truly made that blank wall part of the kitchen. If you didn't know better, it looks like we just planned it that way intentionally!

Not knowing beforehand how many organizational canisters we'd need (or even how many rails we'd end up using), we chose 3 white canisters and 3 stainless steel ones, which we ended up mixing and matching on the top 2 rails.

In these we stored some random kitchen utensils, and other random things (like a cheese grater and ice cream scoop) for easy access. Putting our much-used kitchen supplies on the wall really freed up alot of drawer space for other things! (like towels and linens and ziploc bags). Not to mention that we were able to free up counter space by eliminating the need for our utensil holder that we used to have sitting out.

For the middle rail, we stashed important items like measuring spoons and cups, as well as our slew of spatulas.

For the bottom rail (which conveniently overlaps the backsplash), we hung up some of the prettier much-used utensils and even some fancy Williams-Sonoma oven mitts for easy access (and yes, some eye candy, too!).

So that's how we solved our awkward-empty-kitchen-wall-space dilemma without sacrificing price or style, and gained some much-needed storage. We also love how it gives off that "kitchen" vibe, without being too kitschy, and blends in and matches the rest of our kitchen. And of course, adding storage while lightening the load on our drawers and countertops is always a plus, too!

What do you think? Do you have an Ikea near you? Do you love their rail systems? If you have one, what do you use it for? (we've seen them used anywhere from bathrooms to kitchens to office areas!). Let's talk about awesome Ikea storage solutions!

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  1. We were just at IKEA last weekend tweaking my evil kitchen plot, and that system has been part of it from the first doodles. It looks great in your digs, guys!

  2. Chelsea, That looks fantastic! Perfect way to end the kitchen. Love the way it frees up counter space and is very functional, all while looking great. I may be rethinking my IKEA thoughts......=)
    Yal done real good!

  3. That looks great! It truly does look like you planned it that way!

  4. Awesome! It looks super-handy! Being in Kansas, I unfortunately am no closer to an Ikea than you are. :(

  5. That looks FANTASTIC!!! Love it! Just perfect for the space!

  6. I love it and you know about my Ikea(s). I use those stainless containers for flatware at parties. We put one of the rail systems in the teen's room w/ the ceramic containers and I love the look. Your kitchen looks so prof now!


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