Storage is not a luxury in a kitchen, it is a necessity. Consider that of the 31 National Kitchen & Bath Association guidelines for kitchen planning, four directly deal with storage. Guideline 27 on total shelf/drawer frontage recommends:

  • 1,400 inches of storage for kitchens of less than 150 square feet
  • 1,700 inches for kitchens 151 square feet to 350 square feet
  • 2,000 inches for kitchens over 350 square feet
  • No storage solution for kitchens has created more excitement than the rollout tray. This handy accessory revolutionized how we look at kitchen storage. And rollout features are constantly evolving.

    Both shallow and deep rollouts are available for various size items. For storing dishes, consider a deep rollout with pegged dividers. For canned goods, use shallow-height rollouts. For larger boxed items, such as cereal, a deeper rollout or a high-backed tray will hold items better. Other options include rollouts for CDs and DVDs, tray dividers, and pot and pan holders.

    Many cabinet manufacturers are taking the storage revolution to new heights. Semi-custom cabinet lines combine several types of storage into a single unit. For customers who enjoy baking, some manufacturers offer specialty baking centers with drawer storage for a cutting board and a horizontal spice rack, a separate divided drawer for utensils, and in-cabinet storage for baking trays and mixing bowls.

    Blind base cabinets — long the outcast of kitchen design — now include swing-out shelves and Lazy Susans. Cabinets for recyclables come in many shapes and sizes, as do wastebasket pullouts. Ergonomic designs continue to provide value to customers, while assisting a graying population. These include easy-lift shelves, cooking centers (with knife slots, divided utensil storage, and adjustable drawer dividers on full-extension runners), cutlery dividers, tilt-out trays, and cutting-board shelves. —Nick Ritota is the senior design and software trainer for Merillat Industries. He is a featured speaker throughout the country on product design and CAD software;