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Feb 15, 2009 06:25 PM

Pot rack look

We were looking at getting a pot rack, but were concerned about the look and feel. How does it look with used pots (burn marks and whatnot) hanging right there for all to see? Is it better to get one over the sink, or over a table/island? Are there better ideas for organizing all the pots and pans, short of storing them in a drawer? Thanks.

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  1. Depends on what you want your kitchen to look like. If you are going for a rustic country kitchen, then get them all up there, the nastier the better! If you are going modern (white cabinets and stainless), that will look really weird.

    Islands are ideal spots for pot racks -- but if you need task lighting, something will have to give. If you have space over the range, that would be another good spot. Higher than average ceilings help.

    Another option would be a stand alone shelving unit. Chrome wire for stainless, anodized aluminum and copper, wrought iron for cast iron.

    Our kitchen doesn't have space for either. We have elfa shelves in our pantry -- when the pans started to take over, we just put them on a shelf way down low.

    2 Replies
    1. re: MikeB3542

      Thanks for the tips Mike . I would like the rustic look, I have stained oak cabinets and white appliances, but my thing is that the kitchen and living room are next to each other, its just an open space between the two. In my living room I do have somewhat of a formal space, and do have wrought iron decorations. So I am a bit worried that if I try the pots and pans that are a bit worn and just showing next to the living room, it would look weird. I dont have an island, so was thinking about putting a wrought iron rack flowing with my decor from the living room and setting it above my table, would putting my everyday pans ( a little burned and what not) look weird with the style I have so far ?
      I am trying to clean them regularly, but find that it is so time consuming to keep them looking spotless.

      1. re: ruthantim

        To me ... you cook ... not showcase. I enjoy showing off what I cook with and am proud of it. I have a degree in interior design but I absolutely hate it. I don't live that way. If some hates my pots or pans ... I don't want them in my house ... Simple. I cook and enjoy and entertain. I'm human, not a model. Simple to me. Maybe a bit too much, but that is how I feel.

        I say show them all.

    2. Even if I were designing from scratch, I think now after having this for a while I would choose to have at least the most used pans on a rack. It's really convenient. In my current kitchen I have less cabinet space than overhead space, so I've actually ended up with two racks. One is mounted on the wall above a free-standing extra cabinet where the microwave is sitting. Another is ceiling-mounted above a countertop that has no overhead cabinets and forms a sort of peninsula between the kitchen and dining area.

      The look is a rather subjective and personal thing. To me, having used pots up there says we use the kitchen and don't care who knows it. Heh. It's a small kitchen, there wouldn't be much storage space if we didn't have the racks. For some it probably looks like clutter, and they wouldn't want to go that route.

      The other thing I'd say is that I haven't seen a cabinet or drawer setup that stores pans as efficiently. But I would have to admit that I haven't seen every possible design. If you are deciding this for a new kitchen design, you may in fact have some good choices for drawers if that is preferable and you have the space. But everything I've ever tried to store in drawers and cabinets always means things stacked on top of each other or other compromises. The racks eliminate much of that problem.

      Lids are still the most pain to store, regardless of how you store the pans. ;-)

      5 Replies
      1. re: CrazyOne

        Hi, thanxs for the tips. I like the look of wrought iron and wanted a iron rack above my table does that seem weird at all, but my main concern is that the kitchen opens to my family room, I dont have a dining area, so its my kitchen table next to the start of my family room there to everyone to see, would that look bad?

        1. re: ruthantim

          I can see mine from the living room couch. Small house, the living room and dining room are open to each other, and the kitchen is mostly open to the dining room. But none of that is big enough to hide it from where I'm sitting now. I don't mind it at all. But as I said, that's a personal preference. It may, in fact, look bad to you, or to others coming into your house. ;-)

          I think trying to hide everything in the kitchen is pointless. You can design all the storage space in the world and eventually you'll have something that doesn't fit, or you won't use anything because it's too much of a pain to drag out!

          1. re: CrazyOne

            that is a good point. sometimes I even forget what I have just because it is just all the way to the back of my cabinets, therefore never use it. I dont have much cabinet space. Planning in the future to get extra cabinets (hopefully, at some point in the next year) on a bare wall, but for now I want a quick solution. Question on your racks, do your pans and pots get dirty and dusty often?

            1. re: ruthantim

              If it's a piece we haven't used in a while it might need a quick wipe down, but generally we don't have too much trouble with it. Certainly they could collect some dust just like any surface. If it's used that infrequently that it gets really dusty, I probably should be getting rid of it.

        2. re: CrazyOne

          Put mini-towel-rack-type rails on the insides of cabinet doors and hang lids there -- they're accessible but out of the way, and you're making use of space that would otherwise go to waste.

        3. With a small kitchen, I love my pot racks and I have two. If you are contemplating a rack over an island with a cooktop, let me warn you that all the cooking grease will "varnish" any pots and pans hung above it. As anyone knows what is like cooking with a dirty pan, nearly everything will seriously stick, no matter what your technique. I have one pot rack above the hood on my range and I keep my SS pans there. I have to do a serious scrub with barkeepers freind on them about every two weeks. I keep the anodized set and cast iron across the room and have no problem with them.

          10 Replies
          1. re: JRCann

            how big is your kitchen? when you mention about the cast iron acroos the room, how far is it from your range?

            1. re: ruthantim

              The pot rack across the room is about 11' from the range. That's where i keep the anodized AL and cast iron pans. And BTW, the living room and kitchen/dining area is all open I removed a couple of walls during a remodel. The decorating theme is early american with 100+ yr old oak table & sideboard, although the kitchen cabinets are white formica and oak (and dark brown granite counters) -- it all goes together very well. The pot racks seem to "just belong there".

              1. re: JRCann

                well , do you think the rack and everyday pots and pans would flow with a glass table and black iron chairs , my countertops are light beige formica and stained oak cabinets? I like the idea of putting new pots and pans on the rack and I am sure it looks beautiful, but at some point I am sure I will start using them and am affraid that after looking used and marked, it will just look bad with my other decor .

                1. re: ruthantim

                  I see no reason to think it would be a problem. No matter what well used pots and pans are a sure sign of a good place to visit, eat and .... simply enjoy.

                  1. re: JRCann

                    You mention you use bar keepers friend. Where do you buy that? I am not sure I've seen them in stores. or at least I havent paid attention. Just wondering how effective it is to clean stains. I spent much of today trying to clean my pots and pans, but made little progress.

                    1. re: ruthantim

                      Barkeepers Friend is commenly used in commercial kitchens. I would think any good grocery store has it. My local hardware has it. Look in the section that has "Comet" or Ajax" cleaners. It simular (abrasive) and more effective. For heavy work use with a green Scotch-brite pad. Don't use BF on cast iron tho... it will remove the "seasoning".

                      1. re: ruthantim

                        Just to make it easier to find, Barkeepers Friend is in a non-descript cardboard can (like out of the 50's) -- it's gold with a blue crest on the front.

                        1. re: JRCann

                          thanks so much, I will try and find it at the store. I appreciate that.

                          1. re: ruthantim

                            I haven't been able to find Zud lately, but it is even better than Barkeeper's Friend.
                            When I had a maid in Houston, she was horrified that I didn't keep Zud on hand. She was right about that (and she also rearranged my kitchen so it worked better). I miss her.

                            1. re: shallots

                              Zud is also a good product, I have used it too... I think the active ingredient in both is oxalic acid (don't get scared) and it is best to scrubs and let the product sit on your pans for a while (let the chemicals work) and then scrub again and rinse.

            2. Another idea instead of putting down the cash for a pot rack is to use a nice chain. It's very versatile, you decide how big/long you want it and it works just as well. Of course, you probably want to get something nicer than the cheapest kind offered at Home Depot, but there are options out there. There are stainless steel chains available for instance.

              2 Replies
              1. re: HaagenDazs

                thats another idea I havent thought about, thanks. its clever. I might look into trying to find a nice one.

                1. re: HaagenDazs

                  How do you hang the chain? I like this idea.

                2. If you're not sure which way to go, I can HIGHLY recommend the Varde kitchen cart from Ikea.

                  The wheels are great, the steel shelf is thin and easily dented, but it serves its purpose well enough. The cart comes with hooks for 8 pots and pans which is most of my collection, and they look great hanging in plain view, though not at eye level. The hardwood top is a great cutting board that is replaceable for about $40 if you ever wear it down or warp it.