DIY Refrigerator Enclosure

Yesterday, I posted our DIY Coastal Kitchen Makeover and I can't believe the responses. Thanks for the sweet words everyone! Today I am going to show details on our refrigerator enclosure.
The cabinets in our house are custom but they are 1980's, vacation home custom. They fit the space well, are solid wood, and are in amazing condition but they are very basic. I knew that I wanted the final product to look custom and expensive. One way to do that is have everything built in or look like it was built in.
We built a custom refrigerator enclosure at the end of our cabinets where the previous refrigerator was. You would never know it wasn't built with the rest of the cabinets unless you see the before pictures.
My coastal dining room and kitchen.
You can see that the fridge before was white and bulky and definitely caught your eye when you walked into the space.
There was cabinets above the fridge but nothing else defining the space. The fridge was just placed at the end of the cabinets. This is where we added the enclosure. To save space and give us about 6 more inches of width in the kitchen, we purchased a counter depth fridge.
We used 3/4" higher grade plywood to build an enclosure that includes a shelf over the fridge for cookbooks and other things. We tried to remove the existing cabinets over the fridge to reuse in the enclosure and they would not budge. Those custom cabinets were built to last! So we did the shelf instead which I think is more functional anyway. Also, we extended the same molding from the fur down to make it all match and be cohesive.
Trim and filler were used to give everything a soft edge and a nice finished look.
A Kreg Jig or similar picket screw tool is a must for any project like this. We used pocket screws to secure the outer side to the floor.
Pocket screws were also used for the braces along the back of the enclosure to secure it to the wall and to install the shelf.
The fridge pushes back into the space perfectly!
I am so glad we went with the shelf and I have a space for my cookbooks. The refrigerator hides the pocket screws that are underneath the shelf.
This picture shows where we connected the old cabinets to the new enclosure. You can't tell that the cabinets are 30 years old and the enclosure is new.
We wrapped the backsplash around on the pantry and on the enclosure.
View looking straight on.
The fridge borders the dining area and the pretty white enclosure is a much better view than the bulky fridge that was there before.
I promise the enclosure is worth the money and effort. The cost was minimal and the payoff was huge! It only took 2 sheets of plywood, trim and moldings, filler and pocket screws.
See the entire kitchen makeover details and pictures here--->
See more pictures and explanation on the refrigerator here--->
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Want more details about this and other DIY projects? Check out my blog post!


Have a question about this project?

3 of 98 questions
  • Rusty
    on Mar 2, 2020

    Did y'all leave enough room for ur refrigerator to breath ? It can get really hot back there.

    • Tish
      8 days ago

      I zoomed in on the pictures, and even went to the links posted... this is from 2016! Not a recent project at all, and there was no mention of any spacing or ventilation for the refrigerator. If I were doing this project, and I’m a retired remodeling and renovation contractor, I would have at least put a ventilation grille in the side to make sure there was air flow. A refrigerator puts off a good deal of heat, and it needs a place to vent it out to help it function properly.

      Yes, this LOOKS far better than the old white free-standing fridge did... but I have my doubts as to how long this new stainless steel one will last. 🤨

  • Harriet Fretwell
    Harriet Fretwell
    on Mar 2, 2020

    Would this be proper ventilation for the fridge?? I have a spot just like this.

    • TroubledAries
      on Mar 3, 2020

      I’d leave the top shelf out and put the decorations on top of the fridge so the fridge can have airflow upwards .... it’s going to get very hot and shorten the life of a very expensive appliance enclosed in that tight box the way it is right now! Looks fantastic though!

  • Susan Heath
    Susan Heath
    8 days ago

    Really like the backsplash, is it peel and stick? Did you do a diy on that?

Join the conversation

2 of 517 comments
  • Annie
    7 days ago

    Great use of white!!

    love the construction idea. The entire kitchen looks bright and appears larger. Beautiful outcome.


  • Carolina
    7 days ago

    What an amazing transformation! just beautiful.

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