Kitchen Island

I have a narrow kitchen, not a galley, but narrow. I happen to have a metal cabinet that was formerly in a doctor's office and now in my basement collecting junk, it has one horizontal shelf across the inside. I'm thinking I'd like to spray paint it either white or gray but need to elevate the height to bring it to 40-42 inches (that's an increase in height of about 12-15 inches). The dimensions are 27 high (including casters which I want to leave on), 21" deep, and 39 long. I want to keep the top at about 21" wide but would like to include a 12" drop leaf. This unit will go against a wall, not in the center so it will necessitate opening the drop-leaf to access the doors (or whatever I use to elevate the height), from the front, not the back.
I'm looking for:
(1) options to elevate the height that include storage,
(2) something for counter top that doesn't cost and arm-and-leg will accommodate the drop leaf, and
(3) information about creating a drop leaf. I want to be able to put a couple of stools to the side and move them to the front to be able to eat there sometimes, so drop-leaf extension is necessary for eating function. (I have a dining room that I will move the kitchen table into and we'll eat most meals there).
There is wiggle room for all dimensions listed but my aim is to keep it narrow with a drop leaf. You suggestions and ideas are welcome and appreciated.
q adding a drop leaf and elevating a repurposed metal cabinet, kitchen design, kitchen island, painted furniture, painting, Totally metal cabinet 1
Totally metal cabinet 1
q adding a drop leaf and elevating a repurposed metal cabinet, kitchen design, kitchen island, painted furniture, painting, Metal cabinet 1
Metal cabinet 1
  7 answers
  • Anna Anna on Feb 02, 2015
    Why not add to the top. Put a shelf on it than add the top and drop-leaf over the shelf. Than you would have just a little more storage. You can usually find drop-leaf tables at Goodwill or secondhand stores for a little of nothing. Than take the drop-leaf off, cut top to size you need, re-add the leafs. You would have all the hardware you need plus lumber all for just 1 price. I would put the leaf on both front and back so if I ever needed another table I could just pull it out.

  • NV87 NV87 on Feb 02, 2015
    Having two leafs is a great idea. I have a re-store nearby, I'll check it out. Thanks!

    • Bonnie Bonnie on Feb 06, 2015
      @NV87 Just a thought....Two leaves is a great idea, but you might want to consider just one on the backside so that you'll be able to access the front cabinet doors without having to pull the leaf up to get to it....

  • Don Don on Feb 03, 2015
    To add to the high of the table (as well as the aesthetic appeal), perhaps you could build a nice base for it (a few inches added) and then add some large industrial wheels (very popular now). Lots of ideas for bases could be found here:

    • Bonnie Bonnie on Feb 06, 2015
      @Don I like this idea a lot! Make it a storage base with drawers....

  • SJazz SJazz on Feb 03, 2015
    Add some thick knob feet & butcher block top (sold at lumber liquidators for cheap)

  • The 2 Seasons The 2 Seasons on Feb 04, 2015
    Add towel bars or hooks to both sides with command strips so you can hang some cute dish towels, pot holders, etc.

  • Lindcurt Lindcurt on Feb 04, 2015
    Would it work to extend a counter top past the 39" length of the cabinet for an eating area on each end of the cabinet? Then possibly build an open box with two 39" x 21" boards and two 21" x 12" boards to raise the cabinet up to the height you need. The open box could either go on top of the cabinet or under it to raise it to the height you need. Baskets or drawers could be added to the box for additional storage.

  • Mish Mish on Mar 11, 2015
    You could try a modern take on a tile countertop. I chose that option for my vintage metal kitchen cabinets, and two years later, I am very pleased and quite surprised at how easy it is to take care of. See my icon pic for details. Another option would be Ikea's Karlby butcher block countertop for a kitchen Island. Priced around $250.00, it is 72" long X 42" deep X 1.5" inches thick, so it is long enough to serve as the island top and the leaf. It is available in walnut or oak. Good luck!