Solving the Corner Problem in Kitchen Cabinets

typical corner cabinets, open

Who doesn’t have a corner problem? All rooms have corners, unless it is round, but that is hardly the rule. Corners are particularly problematic in kitchens because of the storage and cabinet issues. They represent wasted space, often dark and inaccessible where stuff stays forgotten for years.

The term for corner spaces in wall and base cabinets is blind corner, because you literally cannot see inside. It is usually so dark you have to stick your hand in without knowing what you are going to get. Okay, maybe that’s an exaggeration, but you get the idea.

Generally, blind corners can be as much as 50% deeper than the other types of cabinets. To put that in perspective, consider that while the standard base cabinet is jut 24 inches deep, a corner base cabinet can be as much as 34 inches. This means anything you put in the back of these cabinets is going to be beyond your normal reach. Access is the reason base cabinets are usually just 24 inches.

In larger kitchens, you can probably afford to ignore the problem. With storage space at a premium in most homes, however, you will definitely want to address this issue. Here are some suggestions for solving the corner problem in kitchen cabinets.

Put in built-in appliances

wall oven in corner

A good way to address the corner issue in kitchen cabinets is not to put cabinets. Obviously, you cannot afford to keep the space idle, so stick an appliance in there. An over, dishwasher, and even a refrigerator are good candidates, as you want some space at the back for ventilation, and you will not need to access these spaces on a regular basis. You just have to include these appliances in the kitchen design.

Put in custom drawers

custom corner drawers

Some cabinet markers offer drawers specifically designed to fit corners. These are custom solutions, so they can be a bit pricey, especially if you have perfectly good cabinets in residence. You will probably have to break up the gang to install these bad boys. However, they are space efficient and design clever, so paying down your dust for this particular remodel might just be worth it.

Put in a Lazy Susan

corner cabinet with lazy Susan in two tiers and swings out

The mainstay in the blind corner solutions is the lazy Susan. People have been using it for decades, and you have to admit it is an ingeniously simple way to solve the access problem. Lazy Susans available today are also much more evolved, often coming in several layers. It also does not only rotate; it swings out and pulls out, maximizing the available space. These are particularly useful for storing spice bottles and condiment containers, which are not particularly heavy.

Another option is the classic round Lazy Susan with a wedge to accommodate the corner angles when closing the cabinets. It just rotates, but it tends to be sturdier and up to handling heavier stuff. Sometimes, the classic solutions still work really well.

Put in swing out cabinets

swing out base cabinets

Swing-out Lazy Susans involve just the shelves. It is possible to have the entire base cabinet swing out and pivot in sections for even better access. They also make the most use of the deepest parts of the corner. This is particularly useful for storing small appliances and large pots, whether you use them occasionally or all the time.

Put in diagonal cabinets

diagonal wall and base cabinets

Custom corner drawers work for base cabinets, but not wall cabinets. You can partially address the access issue of wall corner cabinets by opting for a diagonal cabinet. In this type of wall cabinet, the door cuts across the angle with a flat front. This means the door opening is narrower than the interior, so this limits the size of the stuff you can put inside the cabinets. 

The advantage of the diagonal cabinet is the door opens as easily as all the other wall cabinet doors. A Lazy Susan can help make it even more accessible.

Put in curves

curved corners with sink

As mentioned earlier, you can only avoid corners if you have a round room. This is still true, but you can create the illusion of a curve by putting your sink in the corner and eliminating the sharp angles of the countertops. It helps carry the point by reflecting that same curve on the wall cabinets (using diagonal double-door cabinets) and kitchen island.

Put in wall cabinets alternately

staggered wall cabinets

Not the most complete solution since you cannot really do this effectively for base cabinets, alternating or staggering the wall cabinets as it goes up the wall does make an interesting design. It might address the current trend for open shelves, as staggering the wall cabinets usually means equal amounts of closed and open storage spaces. This also addresses the problem of corner cabinets by eliminating it altogether.

However, this is not really space efficient. This will only really work in larger kitchens, or for homeowners who seldom use the kitchen.

Conclusion

Cabinetmakers usually consider common issues like corners when they design their products. All you really have to do is choose one of the suggested solutions and they probably have what you need.  You can also consult with your cabinet supplier if you are not sure what you need.

Cabinets City is your best bet in Chicago, Schaumburg, Arlington Heights, Des Plaines, Hoffman Estate, Elk Grove Village, and surrounding areas. Visit our showroom in Mt. Prospect, Illinois to see what we have to offer.

We carry some of the best brands in the country, from RTA to freestanding cabinets, and at the best prices compared to Cabinets To Go and Advance Cabinets. These include Schrock, Fabuwood, J and K, Forevermark, and Wolf Cabinets, each of which come with manufacturer warranties. We always deliver on time, so you will not have to worry about keeping your schedule to stay in budget.

We can advise you on the best cabinets for your kitchen remodel. Give us a call for a free consultation and quote!

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Bayram Gulsen <br/><span id="position">Owner</span>

Bayram Gulsen
Owner

Bayram Gulsen is the owner of Cabinets City. He always had this passion to redefine cabinetry to be at its best along with his dedicated team and the author of Cabinets City blog: You can find Bayram on LinkedIn and Twitter.

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