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Apr 8, 2014 11:41 AM

cabinet height

what say you.....i thought the standard height for wall cabinets is 54 inches from floor to bottom of cabinet which would leave an 18 inch back splash. perfect for my kitchenaid. if you're applying a three inch trim, would you hang the cabinets three inches higher so that the trim is at 54 inches from floor? i need to make a decision. i want my kitchen aid mixer to fit underneath the cabinets, but they seem awful high. and i'm tall with really long arms. i could forego the trim....for what it's worth, it's the ikea adel cabinets. trim does make it look better.

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  1. You generally want to leave 18" from the countertop to the bottom of the cabinet above. Any trim pieces should not be included in that measurement and the backsplash should extend to the bottom of the cabinet (not trim).

    8 Replies
    1. re: ferret

      thank you. i was told the exact opposite as well. which is why i'm so confused.

      1. re: eLizard

        Rule #1 is there are no rules. If you're starting from scratch you can do it whichever way works best. The only limitation is if you're also getting full-height (floor-to-ceiling) cabinets that butt up to the counter. You really want to keep a continuous line at the top.

        1. re: ferret

          i'm getting everything as close to the ceiling as i can and then closing the gap with some molding.

          if i have the trim, i won't be able to fit the KA under the cabinet..... but they're so high now. aaahhhh!! in the grand scheme of things, it's not the most important decision of my life. but it feels that way.

          1. re: eLizard

            Some armchair quarterbacking. You don't need to add trim at the top if you don't want to. If your ceiling is not perfectly level it will draw attention to that. You can add a rope light or other LED lighting above the top cabinets for a little added drama.

            As for the KA, do you have any room at the sides for an appliance garage? Or do you have the luxury of using some cabinet space for one of these (you can store the KA and lift it counter height as needed.)


            1. re: ferret

              the trim at the top is definitely up in the air. it's the trim at the bottom of the wall cabinet that i'm struggling with.

              1. re: ferret

                I was going to have one of those raise-up shelves installed in a 15"-wide cabinet, until I realized it would mean dedicating the entire cabinet to the stand mixer. As for keeping the mixer on the countertop -- nope -- countertops are prime real estate in my kitchen. If I regarded the mixer as a decorative accessory, maybe I'd reconsider, but as a functional, seldom-used piece of equipment it just doesn't carry much clout. So the mixer sits on the floor of a nearby pantry closet. It's a little inconvenient to move it to where it gets used, but it's out of my way for all the rest of the time, and that works for me.

                1. re: CindyJ

                  my island is 26 sf and the counter are another 34, so i'm good with leaving the mixer out. and i use it a little more than seldomly. i actually want it a little more prominently displayed (if that's the right word). it used to sit in the recess beneath a corner cabinet next to the micro, toaster oven, and cuisinart and pulling it out was a pain. but that is the ONLY appliance i want on my counter.

                  1. re: eLizard

                    I've got approximately the same amount of counter space as you do (~36 SF and 30 SF), but I hate cluttering it with anything that isn't used at least daily. So all that's permanently on my countertops are my coffee maker, coffee grinder and knife block. Toaster, food processor, blender, waffle iron, mini chopper, griddler, etc., etc., all get stowed in drawers or on pull-out cabinet shelves.

        1. re: VeganVick

          All the cabinets do not have to be the same height.

          1. re: VeganVick

            53.5 from bottom of cabinet? or bottom of trim?

            1. re: eLizard

              53.5 to the bottom of the cabinet no trim

          2. Do it how it works for you. It's your house & you have to look at it & use it.

            I think Kareem has his cabinets a little higher too.

            1. We're tall, too, and I've got long arms. Because of this, anytime we were stuck with standard 36" kitchen cabs, we had them hung 3" higher than normal. Visually, they would then more closely resemble 42's, and we got the benefit of more clearance below them, which allowed for better lighting on the countertops. We've always thought 36's hung at 54" look stunted, like mini-cabs.

              Long story short, it won't look at all weird. Make them work for you. :-)

              3 Replies
              1. re: DuffyH

                thanks. these are 30's with 15's stacked on top of them. if we lowered, we would stack 18's. i'm 5'8, hubs is 6'. my arms are very long..... still seems high. but it could be just being a terrible decision maker. regardless of where we put the bottom cabs, everyone (except kareem) would need a step stool to get to the upper uppers.

                1. re: eLizard

                  <regardless of where we put the bottom cabs, everyone (except kareem) would need a step stool to get to the upper uppers.>

                  Absolutely! Mine right now are 42's, mounted at standard 18" height. I'm 5'9", Dude's 6'. He can reach some stuff on the top shelf, but only if it's got something to grab that's really low on the shelf. For me, even with gorilla arms, it's the step stool. When I was young, I could sometimes make a jump grab, but those days are gone. Kareem would have been proud.

                  Hang them where they need to be to work. Keep a lightweight, easy to store 2-step stool nearby. Works for us! :-)

                  1. re: DuffyH

                    we made the firm decision last night. the cab bottoms will be hung ~57 inches aff. then there will be a 2.5 inch piece trim. which will give me 18-19 inch back splash. enough room for the KA 6 qt bowl lift and an appliance garage.