I have open shelves above my cabinets. Any ideas how to cover them up

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Doing kitchen renovations are out of the question, because just the thought of anymore construction could do me in, but the dust accumulation is really bad up there. I would like to cover them up, but still get to them when i want something up there; which is generally once a week.
q how to cover open kitchen shelves above cabinets, how to, kitchen cabinets, kitchen design, organizing, shelving ideas, storage ideas, this is one side of the room with the servers on top on the cabinets
this is one side of the room with the servers on top on the cabinets
q how to cover open kitchen shelves above cabinets, how to, kitchen cabinets, kitchen design, organizing, shelving ideas, storage ideas, this is the other side of the room with the servers on top of the cabinets
this is the other side of the room with the servers on top of the cabinets
  97 answers
  • Bev Bev on Jan 02, 2015
    Do you really need all that stuff ?

  • Ioná Augusta Ioná Augusta on Jan 02, 2015
    Fica hum pouco anti estético, mas, Uma Solução Rápida Seria colocar Uma cortina Sustentada Por Um trilho ao teto .

  • Lyla Lyla on Jan 02, 2015
    Don't know how this would go with the rest of your kitchen but the cheapest thing would be a rail and a curtain.

  • Marion Nesbitt Marion Nesbitt on Jan 02, 2015
    I see a painted bucket up there?? I'm lucky. A couple of my old kitchen cabinets are in the basement. This is where I store extra canned goods, big roasters, etc. It's worth the trip. I would get an inexpensive shelving unit for this stuff. Or look for some cabinets at the restore, etc. to put in basement or garage. I would also stack round containers, one inside another, etc.

  • Daveicrave Daveicrave on Jan 02, 2015
    I have pretty kitchen things of my grandmother's and mother's that I don't have room for in my cabinet. I show it all off there because I don't have much counter space at all.

  • Mary Barber Mary Barber on Jan 02, 2015
    Don't cover it up. get rid of the clutter and use that space to display some pretty things along with some greenery.

  • Niki Hart Niki Hart on Jan 02, 2015
    If you absolutely need all of it then find those file boxes you put together in a nice pattern you like, or cover the plain ones with paper and label them all, putting like things together so that one box reads "bowls" and so on, making it all easy to find.

  • Bonnie Bonnie on Jan 02, 2015
    Clean everything out, then use pretty baskets for what you can, leave anything like pretty bowls stacked & place any collections like cups or vases. Throw away everything you can.

  • CM Coleman CM Coleman on Jan 02, 2015
    I would use a sliding door track system like you find on cheap furniture. it is just a track with two slots. Then I would use the sturdy place mats or thin picture frames so that they can move like, well, sliding doors. That being said I would definitely look into the need for all of that stuff. I have a cooking channel on Youtube and I do not have anywhere near that amount of bowls containers and trays. I am not judging because you know what you need. But I would look into it.

  • Liliana Wells Liliana Wells on Jan 02, 2015
    All good ideas here. I would give/throw away some of the items. Make three piles: one to keep, one to give, one to throw away. Do the same with the rest of the cabinets. The prettiest items can be displayed up top. The ones you want to keep and do not use everyday can go somewhere else. Remember, the more you have, the more you have to take care of and the more time it will take.

  • Lola Lola on Jan 02, 2015
    Can you find a coat closet or another shelving option, it must be awfully hard to get those items down. Maybe put the items in totes until you need them. Take everything down, get rid of anything you don't use. clean the tops off and maybe use seasonal items up there or leave it empty.

  • Debra J Webb Debra J Webb on Jan 02, 2015
    You can use decorative storage boxes like can be found at Michaels, World Market, Pier1, Pottery Barn, Hobby Lobby, etc. And or you can decorate your own storage boxes with colors and patterns wallpapers, wrapping papers, fabrics, paints, etc. Coordinating with your decor! You can declutter and donate anything you are are not using and needing. Hope this helps, would love to see a photograph posted in here and Pinterest of the results of your redo designer storage decor! Blessings! ;-)

  • Lisa Kaplan Gordon Lisa Kaplan Gordon on Jan 02, 2015
    Wow! Do you really need all those platters and bowls? If so, see if you can find a few, big, decorative boxes to hold those items. It will look better.

  • Sheri N Sheri N on Jan 02, 2015
    I agree with most of the Ladies here, by getting rid of that clutter above your kitchen cabinets. I don't have the problem you do but what I used was a storage closet that my mother had purchased for her home and then gave it to us. All my seasonal stuff, and the pots, plastic containers I use for freezing, all go down in the garage in the closet. Now that 2015 is here it might be a good time to organize your kitchen. Liliana Wells gave you the best idea to reorganize. I might also add while you do it: be brutal, if you haven't used an item in over a year get rid of it, you probably won't ever use it again. Another idea is you might consider the things that you don't need, have a yard sale!

  • Special Touches Special Touches on Jan 02, 2015
    Make some cute curtains. It would help with the dust, be easy to access your items, and add a nice decorative touch...also wouldn't cost much money :) And when they get dusty, you can easily wash them :)

  • Nancy Jenkins Nancy Jenkins on Jan 02, 2015
    Used to have cupboard doors , maybe for your solution build a additional cupboard. Here is what I did. Still need some counter space in my kitchen. I am slowly getting my counter back.

  • Swan Road Designs Swan Road Designs on Jan 02, 2015
    Not renovation per se, but how about if you cut vinyl lattice to fit the area above the cabinets and hinge it from the ceiling. Add some pretty silk/artificial ivy or other decorative details. Then, all you would have to do to retrieve an article on top is to lift the lattice, like a box lid, and get the item and drop the lattice back closed. To be certain you secure the hinge and lattice securely, I would suggest first attaching a strip of wood to the ceiling, perhaps a firing strip, and use a piano-type hinge. All these items are available at your local home center and/or hardware store, such as Lowe's or The Home Depot.

  • Cindie Taylor-pamula Cindie Taylor-pamula on Jan 02, 2015
    GET RID OF SOME OF IT. It not only gets dusty but if you have a gas range, it also gets grimy from cooking with gas.If you use something at least once a week, I'm sure sometimes it's the same items. there is more than 52 items up there, once a week for the whole year. The curtains sound cute but, they will get dusty & dirty. and also show bulges from the item behind. Baskets sound pretty, but you will not be able to see what in every basket.... Mostly I have seen people use the track or channel system . channel on ceiling , channel below on from edge of cabinet. . some cut decorative patterned , or colored plexiglass , or thin luan , or( peg board for air circulation ) or material of pegboard.... PAINT , and you can slide side to side. I have been a kitchen -Bath designer for remodeling & new construction for 36 years . This Is usually what I have seen that people want to take out when the complete room is gutted. But this might help you.....MOST OF ALL THROW SOMETHING AWAY......

  • Donna Donna on Jan 02, 2015
    CLEAN IT ALL OFF OF THE TOP..PUT A SIGN ON A PLATE HOLDER A PLATE ON A HOLDER A FEW BOWS PRETTY ONES NOT A LOT KEEP IT CLEAN THE EYE WILL GO UP IT WILL LOOK VERY NICE ..DONNA, RICHMOND,MI

  • Carole Carole on Jan 02, 2015
    Throw everything into a row of matching large wicker baskets. No cabinetry involved and you will need steps to access those baskets. Covered baskets may be best as that will dust proof the items to some degree.

  • Lisa's Creative Designs Lisa's Creative Designs on Jan 02, 2015
    Yep, I would go with some large baskets mixed in with some decorative items. Try and scale down the clutter and do a little purging if you can. I have a small kitchen so I know it can be hard to find places for everything but I can't stand to look at the mess. It feels good to just get rid of those things I do not use much. I use my soffit space to display my vintage kitchen décor.

  • Funnygirl Funnygirl on Jan 02, 2015
    baskets would be a. Really good way to go.Another idea someone suggested was hanging a small curtain over the space.If you wanted to do that,burlap curtains would be a good choice.Simple to do-staple burlap to yardsticks then screw into ceiling.I think they would blend well with your present cabinets. Lisa's cabinet is adorable!

  • Gail Salminen Gail Salminen on Jan 02, 2015
    @purplenine I had the same problem with my cabinets. We will be redoing the kithchen in the next couple of years and then they will go to the ceiling. In the mean time I have culled over cabinet storage keeping only what I use more frequently. The rest was sorted and of what I kept that cluttered too much are on a shelf in the basement. The other thing I found was that when you store things up there they get greasy and need to be cleaned before using them again. So now I cover them in a clingy saran - purchase a bulk box from cosco, that way I have it on hand all the time. I do like the idea of sliders or lattice up there to mask it. I would likely do one of those if we weren't going to redo the kitchen in a bit.

  • Sheryl Johnson Sheryl Johnson on Jan 03, 2015
    I actually designed our kitchen redo with space like this above everything. BECAUSE I have always collected good quality baskets. In my baskets over the cabinets I keep cookie cutters, seasonal items, the cake decorating items...all that clutter that normally gobbles cabinet or drawer space. There's even a basket up there big enough for my Kitchen Aid mixer attachments not often used, like the pasta maker or ice cream maker. I agree though ~ you have to be brutal and get rid of some of that. It's almost impossible to do alone. Do you have some college age family members? Newlyweds in the area? Perhaps an area church holds an annual flea market? I'll bet you can think of family or friend or organization who would be happy to help you climb & sort. Even a local food pantry may send people to help. Our area food pantry loves to receive kitchen items so they can help folks when they need an extra pan or serving dish. Don't be ashamed to ask for some extra hands!!

  • Carole Cottom Carole Cottom on Jan 03, 2015
    Just redid my cabinet tops...moved a lovely set of dishes that I seldom use to there.(Display them decoratively). But my best solution has been to pull my couch away from the wall about the width of my largest tote. I store seldom used items there. I have lots of interesting items displayed above the couch. I would use some of your nice platters above yours. I have also covered the totes that show with a throw that matches my couch. I have a lot of furniture away from the wall where I hide a card table, etc.

  • Winnie Winnie on Jan 03, 2015
    Do you really need all that ? I would be ruthless about paring down. I opened a wall in my kitchen and lost 2 cabinets. The things I only need occasionally are now in a storage cabinet downstairs. You would probably be amazed at how much of that you can do without.

    • Kay M. Kay M. on Jan 04, 2015
      @Winnie is right. I have six children (four married) and twelve grandkids. I had almost as much and pared it way down. I still have plenty to use, and made some money at a garage sale. I display antique servers (the kind that look like chickens on a basket) and cookie jars above my cabinets now!

  • HeyRoper HeyRoper on Jan 03, 2015
    I would like to recommend that you take everything down and sort in 3 piles - 1. Use Weekly 2. Use Monthly 3. Use at Holidays I guess depending on how big these groups are, you can keep the weekly on top of cabinets again OR I purchase the unit pictured (i got mine at Big Lots for half the price). I put in mine all my crockpots that I use maybe every other month. I have the luxury of having a pantry, so all my food is stored the, so my cabinets are filled with what you have on top of your cabinets. For anything you rarely use our only use at holiday, maybe store them in boxes, on a shelf in the basement or garage.

  • Therese Ryan-Haas Therese Ryan-Haas on Jan 03, 2015
    I also have that problem I have minimal storage to keep things that are to large for cabinets. Or just don't use often. I like the besket idea but it can get costly. Curtains are best!. Have you see the Ikea curtain Wire? can just screw these in your ceiling and hang cafe curtains off them or collect cute cloth napkins to keep with a kitchen theme. http://www.ikea.com/us/en/catalog/products/60075295/. Or if you don't like the wire how about hooks and PVC or conduit for cheap rods?

  • Adrianne C Adrianne C on Jan 03, 2015
    Enclose it with glass or continue the cabinetry with doors.

  • Joan M Joan M on Jan 03, 2015
    How about those cupboard doors that open up to the ceiling instead of from right to left?

  • Melissa Dowden Melissa Dowden on Jan 03, 2015
    no way you need that much stuff. throw 90 percent away...

  • Z Z on Jan 04, 2015
    Being that none of us know what you need and don't need, I will say I'm sorry for those that may have hurt your feelings by telling you,that you don't need everything there. I know I have things that I don't use often, but when I need them, I'm very happy I have them. With that said, I agree with RoPer in that a better way to store them might be to get a cabinet deeper than the wall cabinets, even if you have to put the cabinet in the garage or basement. I see that some of the items are bigger than the depth of your wall cabinets so there is really no way to store them in any sort of containers that would fit neatly above your wall cabs. Another idea would be to reorganize your current kitchen cabinets, making room for the larger items into the base cabinets, leaving only smaller items for above the cabinets. Since you like purple, you might want to store all the purple decoratively up there mixed with some of the white ones. Good luck! I wish I could be more helpful.

  • Jean Thompson Jean Thompson on Jan 04, 2015
    I would Sort everything like Suggested above.. by using Baskets they are still going to get dusty on top etc.. I would hang small curtains ( maybe some valences you find on Sale or at Thrift Store. space some eye Screws about 36 to 48 inches apart in the Ceiling joist, you can use a cafe Rod from Dollar Store to just slide into the holes in the Eye screws and Shir the curtains on it..(before putting it in the Eye part). you could put these at each end and leave the middle section open for A Couple Decorative items. But if its outa site and it doesn't Get used much... ? My Friend raised her bed up with those Risers you can get in most Stores like Walmart or building Stores like Lowe's or Home Depot. and Raised her bed up by 6 inches... Wow The Storage area under there for covered plastic Tubs. or Shoe Boxes, big Serving Dishes etc...

  • Pghnana Pghnana on Jan 04, 2015
    We had a similar problem. I purchased a used entertainment center for $20 and put it in my basement. I now store all entertainment things (trays, holiday, roasters, etc) in it. It took a coat of paint to fix up a little, but it looks just fine, I now have only have a few things in baskets and it looks fantastic.

  • Becky Thorstenson Becky Thorstenson on Jan 04, 2015
    When I bought my Condo, they had that storage space in mind, and had thin colored plexi-glass sliding doors above the cabinets. Fairly inexpensive to install, and adds a bit of whimsy at the same time.

  • Marion Marion on Jan 04, 2015
    How about covering with sliders,so you can store items ,without them. Wing an eyesore.

  • BERNIE BERNIE on Jan 04, 2015
    I AM NOT SURE HOW MUCH HEIGHT YOU HAVE BETWEEN THE CABINETS AND THE CEILING, BUT YOU COULD FIND SOME WOODEN CRATES TO STORE YOUR ITEMS IN. YOU MAY CAN FIND THEM FREE AT A VEGETABLE AND FRUIT MARKET, YOU CAN PAINT THEM FOR DECORATION OR LEAVE THEM NATURAL. YOU CAN ADD SOME DRAW HARDWARE TO MAKE IT EASY TO PULL THEM OUT. YOU COULD ALSO USE DRAWS FROM AN OLD DRESSER. GOOD LUCK!

  • Becky Shell Becky Shell on Jan 04, 2015
    I agree with several of commenters .I would get rid of cheap plastic stuff at least most of it how many plastic serving bowls do you really need .Put smaller things in wooden crates and use the large nice pieces as decor on top of cabnets. If you afraid you might need some of the thing and don't want to get rid of box it up and go back to it in a year if you didn't need it in a year you most likely don't need it .If it pains you to part with a nice item that you really don't need maybe gift it to a special friend. THIN THE HERD

  • Linda Linda on Jan 04, 2015
    This was my solution! I hated that blank space on top,, so I made it a decorative place. My kitchen is basically an Italian type kitchen. in colors and decorations--so that is what I went for.

    • Traceycater Traceycater on Jan 04, 2015
      @Linda I love the look! I just don't see how this will help for where or how to store her items?

  • Linda Linda on Jan 04, 2015
    I picked up almost all of this stuff at garage sales. You really don't need all that stuff on top. Hey I am 66 and it has taken me years to figure this stuff out. My solution? Pack 90% away in black garbage bags and put it in the basement, attic or garage (hopefully you have one of these). If you find yourself not going to the basement for a year--just put it in the car and give it to Good Will, Salvation Army or St. Vincent de Paul. They will be able to sell it.

  • Nancy Jenkins Nancy Jenkins on Jan 04, 2015
    Piles or boxes labeled Keep. Sell and Donate , Garbage.

  • Traceycater Traceycater on Jan 04, 2015
    I too have this problem! I have all kind of stuff on top of my shelf above my cupboard do to lack of space, plus my husband wanted to show off his lighthouses which took some more of the space! I think I like the curtain idea. I am going to search how to put up the curtains. I don't understand what others are saying about how to hang with hooks or what a café rod is? I am waiting for some pictures or more info on this idea! I hope we both can find a way to "hide" some of our stuff. I don't have a basement or room for an extra cupboard or storage area either. Thank-you all of you for information!

    • Connie Connie on Jan 04, 2015
      @Traceycater I two thought of this idea.Valences might be long enough.You could also use narrow café rods avail.@ mostNo search results.Family Dollars. suspended from ceiling.If you did not want it too fussy,you could use co-ordinating solids or very small prints to match your kitchen or existing curtains.I like it open myself to display unigue cookie jars,containers,bowls,small pitchers.But be prepared to take it down 2 or 3 times a yr. to clean shelf and articles.My son helps with this if I can trick him over to help LOL.Table Runners if not too wide can be used to put on top of cabinets to cut back on cleaning top of cabinets..

  • Tracy W Tracy W on Jan 04, 2015
    Firstly, it can be stacked much better to make more space. Stack like trays together that will be sturdy to the ceiling. Nest bowls inside one another. What about buying storage bins that stack neatly and put all the items maybe in the garage? Keep the things you use on a weekly basis and the other special event pieces could be place out of sight. I think you would like the look a lot more with a lot less clutter on top. Display some of your nice pieces and bin up the rest.

  • Tracy W Tracy W on Jan 04, 2015
    You can also go to the thrift stores and buy baskets and store some items in the baskets.

    • Lola Lola on Apr 06, 2016
      @Tracy W Did you mean she could donate to the thrift store??

  • Savona Brady Savona Brady on Jan 04, 2015
    I started with my tea pot collection and cookie jars. Then hubby started adding his "prized collections" of beer pitchers, buckets, empty liquor bottles, etc. I now call it dust junk collectors. I plan to try to eliminate open cabinets in our new log house but time will tell. I can't part with stuff very well and we "always need it". ;) Good luck. I think I'll add in some flowers and words like @Linda has shown above.

  • I would buy a cabinet at a consignment store and organize those things in that. The pieces would be behind closed doors giving your kitchen a much neater and organized look. Don't feel bad. We all have too much stuff with no where to put it. I put cabinets in my garage and store that kind of stuff out there. You can also take a closet and add shelves from ceiling to floor. Great storage for all that kind of things.

  • MaryJane Harris MaryJane Harris on Jan 04, 2015
    I have decorative stuff up there now.....I was planning on adding crown molding to the top of the cabinets and having nothing up there......right now I put newspaper down in the well and remover and wash the items once a year......putting down new newspaper.....the date on the newspaper tells me when I did the chore last....

  • Ltt834476 Ltt834476 on Jan 04, 2015
    Rearrange all your cabinets. If you use any of these items in a weekly basis put those items inside your cabinets. Only place the items you hardly ever use on top. By make it look decorative. I had the same problem. The plastic plates can be placed on top of glass plates inside your cabinets. Same with plastic mixing bowls.

  • Purplenine Purplenine on Jan 04, 2015
    You have all given me so many great ideas. My husband was laughing so hard at some of them, he cried. No one has said anything that hurt me, because no one knows my needs or not, but thank you to those that were concerned. I'm sorry to say that these are items used all the time, because we have dinner parties at least once a week and I use color themes and designs each time. We have a big family, 7 kids and so far 14 grandkids and counting, and i like to use this stuff when we get together. I have another room, organized beautifully, of my occasional dinnerware and a third place, also organized beautifully, for my seasonal items. This place is my "go to now" place so I can't really purge it more, but i am going to try. To get up there really isn't so hard because i am still young enough to climb and i would use a ladder if need be. I think until one of our children can help me, I am going to cover the whole thing with color coordinated, yes purple, material and make a map on paper of where what is so i can get to it easiest when i want it. It possibly will require another set of hands, but i'll deal with that when it does. On a side bar, i have to be honest with you all and tell you that my husband really wants to build me a new kitchen, but i can't deal with anymore construction woes...thanks for so many great ideas

  • Claire M Claire M on Jan 04, 2015
    I think I would get matching baskets that fit your belongings along the entire top space for a cohesive look and label them so you can locate items easily. Would look streamlined and organized and would not attract dust like fabric can. imho

  • Colleen Colleen on Jan 04, 2015
    Before starting anything, sort all your items (keep,give away, and toss), Measure your items(to determine what size container to use). Simple cloth baskets (like linen closet bins) would work, add labels and simple vineal plastic (you can purchase by the yard at JoAnns, Hancock, Hobby Lobby etc) for covering. I'm not a fan of using fake greenery, as they too collect dust and take too much time to keep clean. Good Luck.

  • Tas839264 Tas839264 on Jan 04, 2015
    Remember never store cookbooks on the shelves. They get real greasy and dusty. After 19 years I finally got a beautiful book case to put all my cookbooks in,but it took me 4 hours because I had to clean them all off first. Never again. I do have some antique glass up there.

  • Purplenine Purplenine on Jan 04, 2015
    after sharing this with my husband, i did get him to help me clean out one cabinet that was being wasted, and i have a new place for some of my servers. i haven't given up yet to get "rid" of more. not sure cloth baskets/bins will work because of the dust up there, and they will look grimy pretty fast. would like to use milk crates maybe - plastic idea

  • Virginia Vall Virginia Vall on Jan 05, 2015
    Don't know how helpful I can be... but here are a few ideas.... 1. Use washable contact paper on top of the cabinets, this will make it easier to clean. 2. Use washable contact paper on the boxes you decide to use to contain your theme ware. I definitely suggest you label all containers for easy identification of contents of each box. Example: Christmas theme could be a red, white, and green box. Note: some clear contact plastics will stick to fabric. All the boxes should have a lid on them to help keep the items inside clean and ready to use. Each box should have a sturdy handle also. 3. Using a curtain may not be the best option as they would absorb any grease and dust up there, creating more work for you later down the road. I personally do not like housework; therefore, if there is a way to prevent more cleaning, then that is my path of choice. 4. If you must use a curtain use a good quality plastic shower curtain. 5. Another option is a bamboo roll-up curtain, I have seen at the thrift store in various sizes, even one that is 8 ft wide. You will need to shorten the length to fit the height of that space above your cabinets. 6. I collect tin cans of all different sizes. In one can I keep my paper plates and napkins in another tin which is rectangular with a hinged top. This way I can display my tins while they house decorations, utensils, and the like. 7. Baking sheets and things that are really too big to house above the cabinets are in a vertical position in a make shift box to keep the pans straight and organized. I don't have much cabinets so I had to be quite creative. I wrapped the punch bowl assembly into a large plastic bag and using a clothes pin to keep the bag sealed closed. I put the drink dispenser back in the original box as well as the ice-cream machine and extra bowl in their original boxes also. I keep appliance boxes to make it easier to store when not in use. I store the boxes close to the wall in the back and in front I display my seashell collections which are in clear decorative jars.

    • Judy Roberts Judy Roberts on Jan 07, 2015
      @Virginia Vall great idea~but I use 12x12 inch tiles, self-stick that I buy at Fred's. They stick forever and wipe off so easily! I use them in all my cabinets! Iron skillets don't ruin them either!

  • Donna Donna on Jan 05, 2015
    I did answer this but I will again ..I would first take it all down ..clean it place a plate holder up there with a cute sign on it then maybe a few pretty bowls ..another plate holder with a pretty plate on it ..maybe a ceramic chicken or whatever you like ...all done don't put to much up there the eye will go up and it will look nice. Donna Richmond, Mi.

  • JoAnn JoAnn on Jan 05, 2015
    I have a friend who has additional cabinets to the ceiling…everything is organized and concealed but handy. I wish I had seen this arrangement when I bought my home. I would have all my stuff but it would be behind closed doors!

  • Michele Clarke Michele Clarke on Jan 05, 2015
    If your husband is handy or price out a carpenter to build a cabinet up to the ceiling on both sides. It would just be the front facade. Then stain it to match to or paint an accent color. this way you can reorganize and put the things you use least up top and move some other stuff down. No dust or grease on everything.

  • Patricia Patricia on Jan 06, 2015
    These are some great ideas, as I was reading these I thought about putting bowls like punch bowls in gift wrapping. the celephane kind to make them look like gifts with ribbons on them to make them look decorative.

  • CK CK on Jan 07, 2015
    If you were my client, the first question I'd ask you is "Is there a way you can downsize any of the items you have stored up there? Or, can some of the items be stored anywhere else?" To me it's more a question of organization. Once you get things pared down and organized, I think you'll like your kitchen look much more. Wish I could be there to assist in person. There are many other great ideas on here to assist you as well :-)

  • Carol Carol on Jan 07, 2015
    I also have open space over my cabinets, designed that way purposely when I had my kitchen remodeled. I had them put a decorative railing around the top so it would be cat-proof, as at the time I had climbing cats who loved to knock things off the top shelves. After the cat-proofing was in place, I used that area for my collection of decorative mugs and souvenir wine glasses. I put sheets of aluminum foil or plastic wrap up there to facilitate cleaning ( use several sheets & then just pick up the top one and toss it - replace with another stack when you get down to the last one). I agree with purging as many of the items as possible, and then using labeled baskets for the remaining items that have to live up there, and those should only be things you rarely use. Have had recent experience falling off step ladders, so, no matter how old or young you are, you should keep the use of stepladders to a minimum, particularly over a hard surface like a kitchen floor!

  • Helen Garrett Helen Garrett on Jan 08, 2015
    I think you need cabinets to the ceiling. You are short on space now.

  • Dale Dale on Jan 08, 2015
    Make a curtain to cover it all, a print to coordinate with curtains etc. could hang cafe rods from the ceiling.

  • Rebecca Carfrae Rebecca Carfrae on Jan 08, 2015
    Looks like a tiny kitchen and we all need our stuff so how about taking a look at how many bowls will nest inside another and placing like items together.A rolling kitchen island/cabinat for the most frequently used items.And this maybe original....the 2 track plastic strips for sliding door on the cupboard top and on the ceiling with a 1/ 4 inch panel with finger holes for opening?decorative knobs? Maybe depending on the height from ceiling to cabinet some of those decorative tiles that look like tin ceiling tiles.

  • Savona Brady Savona Brady on Jan 08, 2015
    Another idea about covering plastic bins with fabric. You can buy an iron on safe clear plastic to adhere to your fabric before you glue onto the plastic bins. Happy storing and solutions. I am a hoarder and refuse to give up all my extra pieces. I give to each grand daughter as she sets up her first apartment but only one time for each child.

  • Change of Art Change of Art on Jan 08, 2015
    How about some quick + easy fabric panels? Create a rod pocket at the bottom and insert some wooden dowels to keep them weighted down (and neat). roll over the fabric at the top (like a hem) and staple it to a thin piece of pine........... Screw some cheap wood into the ceiling so you have something to attach them to – and finish off the face with a little moulding stained to match your cabinets. You can probably find something ready-to-go at your local building supply (Home Depot and Menard's have a large selection of moulding.)

  • Change of Art Change of Art on Jan 08, 2015
    Sliding doors would be almost as easy. You can get the slider channels for top & bottom + MDF panels for 'doors'. You don't really need handles to slide them back and forth, so they could just blend into the background.

    • See 1 previous
    • Change of Art Change of Art on Jan 09, 2015
      @Becky Thorstenson I'm actually not a fan of too much storage space – especially when it's out of reach. For me, if it's out of sight, it really is out of (my) mind. (I tend to forget what's behind closed doors, so I have mostly open shelving in my kitchen.) I like the sound of your colored sliding doors – more like art than storage! I hope you'll consider posting a photo for inspiration.

  • Marie R Marie R on Jan 08, 2015
    The first thing I would do is take it all down..pack it in tubs/boxes...if at all possible, put them in an 'out of the way' place...(this is an experiment:))..and then see what you actually use in the next 6 months/year. It's an amazing way to find out how to get rid of things you don't really use. I have 7 kids(now grown), and everything we did was 'big'...that's a lot of stuff to store, and its possible you don't really need it all:) I hope this doesn't sound rude, because it's not mean that way at all...I have space above mine, and its so fun having decorative stuff up there (except this week,when I had to clean it all..lol) and kitchens can get so overflowing with things we never use. I have truly learned if I haven't used it in a 6mo/yr...it gets donated. Then the stuff you really use, may fit into existing cupboards/cabinets, etc. Seriously, I hope I didn't sound snarky...I love organizing..even though I'm very ADD:)

  • Marie R Marie R on Jan 08, 2015
    ....I've seen people 'decorate' cardboard boxes with inexpensive materials,,,that could work, too, for what you do decide to keep...then it's just a box, if you have to get rid of it because of dust/cooking grease mess...have fun! It's January...organizing month!

  • Chrisy Chrisy on Jan 08, 2015
    I was just making a comment to my husband about this, but my situation is the opposite! We don't have the open area, it is all closed in! I wish it was open, I could use the extra space for decorations and dust. I don't understand why they close them up. Like some of you have said, I would get some wrapping paper to match the kitchen decor, and wrap some cardboard boxed to put my "not used very often" things in and on one side of the kitchen I would have the decorated boxes and on the other side (the side that people will see, when they first walk in the kitchen) I would have my cake stands and other things I like to look at on that side! I am sure you will find a solution for your situation on here! Everyone is so helpful!

    • J J on Jan 16, 2015
      @Chrisy they cover them because you would not believe how much grease and dirt, dust bunnies will collect up there and it's very hard to clean. Much like what happens on top of the fridge. But like you, I hate knowing there is all that wasted storage space up there and I've piled things up there, too, just like the lady who showed the photos of her space above the cupboards. I even tried faux plants but they got so greasy and full of cobwebs they had to go to the trash. So, yeah, it's not the greatest of storage for food of any kind because the heat rises to the ceiling in a kitchen and that will affect any food stored up there. I would also like mine covered to look much neater. I am not one for open storage - looks too cluttered to me.

  • Tallsally 1942 Tallsally 1942 on Jan 10, 2015
    How about large rectangle basket to put your extra's in on top of cupboard.

  • Janet Glabas Janet Glabas on Jan 12, 2015
    Clutter should be kept hidden lol I always say.........When I moved into my house. I fell in love with the high ceilings and tall kitchen cabinets........the first thing I thought was how to decorate them.........................this is just one of my idea I did..

    • Samantha Pulliam Samantha Pulliam on Jan 26, 2015
      I absolutely LOVE the look you've created on top of your cabinets! Clutter drives me INSANE so anytime I can exchange it for something pretty, I'm all for it!

  • LATOYA LATOYA on Jan 12, 2015
    How about some baskets??!

  • Marie R Marie R on Jan 12, 2015
    I have 7 children, also...with 21 grandkids....so you are probably going to get more!! How cool...I LOVE big families:)

  • Millie Millie on Jan 13, 2015
    I am a major fan of fabrics of all kinds. I'd do the fabric curtain. Easy to install, easy to clean, and easy to change out.

  • Lulu Lulu on Jan 13, 2015
    whoa...less is more....pick out a few of your fave pieces and maybe store the rest...ur eye can't rest on any specific piece or theme when there's too much conflict...u can always rotate and switch out pieces to keep it fresh or seasonal...a few really good quality faux plants are always soo pretty in baskets on cabinet tops...in between put a few of your pretty collectables...no judgement here...i'm a reformed clutter- holic and have to practice it allthe time...when clutter gone...what a deep fresh breath you'll be able to take....when my sanctuary is chaotic and cluttered...I AM CHAOTIC AND CLUTTERED inside...hope it helps...

  • Lindcurt Lindcurt on Jan 15, 2015
    Take the present cabinets down and re install them clear to the top of the ceiling. Add open shelves below the cabinets. The open shelf would be much easier to clean than one way on the top.

  • PattyV PattyV on Jan 15, 2015
    Do you really use all that items on a daily basis? Could you select what you use most and store the others? I agree with one poster that using baskets to store the items would may it look less clutter and more cohesive.

  • J J on Jan 16, 2015
    I like the sliding doors idea so there is hidden storage there if you want to use it. I would put some of those big pots or turkey roaster, etc I have or appliances I don't often use up there so long as it didn't get too greasy and dirty behind those doors.

  • Traceycater Traceycater on Jan 29, 2015
    Did you redo anything with all the replies you have gotten? Any chance we can get a picture of your "new" shelving? Would love to see if so, I too have this "overloaded above cupboard shelf" as well and would love to see more pictures from you and anyone else's ideas! Let's see what we can compare! Thanks hometalk friends!

  • Kayo Frazier Kayo Frazier on Feb 04, 2015
    Here's my 2 cents...First thing, I would do is take everything down in sections then make piles of bowls, trays, decorative pieces, small kitchen appliances and whatever else you have. This will give you a better idea of what you have because it looks like whatever you couldn't find space for in a cabinet or pantry just got shoved up there. For your trays, separate the large from the small ones. Then, I would make 1-2 boxes w/ slots/pockets for each of your trays. Get the measurements of the trays small & large. Get the height, width & depth of the space above the cabinets. Make a simple 3 sided box, then place 1" x 1" around the edge on 3 sides then place plywood down then add another 1" x 1" around the edges w/ another plywood board...Build it up as many as you can fit. Paint it whatever color you want. Put these boxes next to each other at the end of your cabinets. Then place a tray in each slot/pocket. You can make one for the practical trays & one for decorative ones. You can even double the trays up for each slot. For your bowls, I would separate the plastic from the metal or glass, If you find that you have a lot of plastic, you might want to consider switching to nesting glass or metal bowls. It will make things neater, plus you don't have to worry about cross - contamination of food or dust because plastic is porous. Glass or metal is not. For your decorative pieces like bowls I would nest them one inside the other. For your small kitchen appliances I would gather them & place them where you can get easy access. That should leave you just enough room for any large kitchen items like a roasting pan. By the time you are done if you still want to hide it then any of the suggestions by the above posters will probably work. Hope this helps.

  • Janet Collins Pauley Janet Collins Pauley on Feb 18, 2015
    possibly framing it in and adding cabinet doors, doesn't seem like it would take that much to achieve for someone with some skills.

  • Janet Glabas Janet Glabas on Feb 19, 2015
    Two more pics of my kitchen............first pic of something my aunt used to have in her kitchen...........it covered her wall hanging phone.....you opened the door and there was your phone. Second pi shows my starbucks jars turned into milk jars in old metal carrier,my cheesebox covered in coca cola wallpaper,my 75th anniversary coca cola bottles from when I worked at Coca Cola plant Augusta,Ga.

  • Janet Glabas Janet Glabas on Feb 19, 2015
    I would take everything down and decorate instead

  • Lindcurt Lindcurt on Feb 19, 2015
    Do you have a kitchen table in this room. You could use long and narrow storage ottomans for some of the seating and store some of the most used items in there.

  • William Tillis William Tillis on Feb 20, 2015
    Based on the information you gave, I see the possibility of attaching a small aluminum track that is a guide for small drapery hooks with glides on the top. They insert into the track and then attach to the curtains. The curtains can slide back and forth to reveal the item you might need that day.

    • See 1 previous
    • Justfixit Justfixit on Sep 13, 2015
      Yes, I was going to suggest curtains too. If the area is small enough you could use a curtain or shower curtain rod. Off topic, I think the purple accessories you have stored look so pretty against your cabinets. Are you going to redo your kitchen with those items? If so please share it because purple kitchens are rare.😀

  • AdrianaG AdrianaG on Jan 02, 2016
    I would see if I could get matching cabinets to fill in above the existing ones. Since the existing cabinets could use an upgrade, a cabinet refacer might be able to fabricate something to match. Refacing is quick and easy and does not involve the mess of a total re-do.

  • Bnd2070302 Bnd2070302 on Jan 02, 2016
    I have the same thing in my kitchen. Eventually we'll remodel and put in taller cupboards, but until then I have used it as a decor area...not a storage area. I have a couple of old picnic baskets with pretty cloths coming out of them for color, canisters and pitchers, plus a few small items from my Grandmas.

  • Dorothy McVoid Dorothy McVoid on Jan 02, 2016
    Maybe several matching, large size baskets with labels to show contents!

  • Toni Toni on Jan 03, 2016
    Ever thought about down sizing and stop shopping... just being honest.....

  • Karen Reilly Karen Reilly on Feb 25, 2016
    If you are going after that stuff once a week it needs to not be so high see if you can switch out lesser used stuff. I have a very small kitchen with unusable cabinets I store a lot of my stuff on shelves in the basement.

  • Michelea973 Michelea973 on Apr 05, 2016
    Maybe add a curtain rod to the ceiling and put up a valance to cover all that stuff. Chalk paint the cabinets for a new look without having to replace the cabinet.

  • Michelea973 Michelea973 on Apr 05, 2016
    Ceiling mount hardware for curtain rods. They come in different styles. There's a link below, google it...I google everything. Good Luck! http://www.amazon.com/Umbra-Ceiling-Mount-Bracket-Drapery-Nickel/dp/B004CM9PHQ

  • Lola Lola on Apr 06, 2016
    Ikea sells curtain rods or a wire system that would work well for that. Personally, I don't see how you could use all that stuff weekly. Sometimes, you have more when you have less. I am licensed as a pest control professional and I would not have anything up there. That just grosses me out.

  • Pamela Henn Pamela Henn on Nov 09, 2016
    Here's another idea for you. How about purchasing some plastic storage totes that all match in color and size, to put your things in? This will not only keep your things from getting dusty, but organized and still available when you need them.

  • Katherine Katherine on Nov 10, 2016
    A senior friend of mine added a plate railing on the bottom and had some plexi glass cut to fit in the Rail All the way up to the ceiling. She can see her tea pots but no dust

  • Dina Dina on Nov 20, 2016
    Go to Ikea and get a flexible curtain rod that you can install. They are at least 10 ft long and are made of wire. Hanging a simple balance to match the rest of your kitchen will look great! Good luck

  • Agnes Chrzanowska Agnes Chrzanowska on Apr 30, 2022

    Frame it and add glass with lights or build a suffit