Since moving into our builder grade colonial, I’ve slowly been customizing spaces to fit for our family’s needs…
One space in our home that just felt standard is our kitchen. The layout is common, a center island surrounded by wall cabinets and an overall well-thought-out floorplan, but the drawer space is lacking, to be frank. Sure, we have cabinet space, but there were “faux” drawers where there should be storage space.
The area below our cooktop was unused space. With a family of four and two children who spend several times a week cooking, we needed to be utilizing all the available areas of our kitchen.
We already have a pullout spice tower to the left of our cooktop, but it can only house so many spices and cooking necessities which left us to store the remaining spices in an upper cabinet. To keep my daughter from climbing to reach the upper cabinet, another spice drawer was needed.
I removed the “faux” drawer front from under the cooktop and began building my custom spice drawer.
Following Ana White’s Guide to Building the Easiest Drawers, I added spacers using leftover 3/4″ plywood to bring the sides of the cabinet walls flush with the face frame. I installed 16-inch soft-close drawer slides that I purchased from Home Depot. Your local home improvement store should have them available. I went on to build a custom drawer to fit this space by following Ana’s guide. If you were following along with the pantry build, you know that drawers are not the simplest DIY to tackle, but Ana’s explanation made this a quick afternoon project.
For the lumber, I used 1×4 select pine boards and 1/4″ plywood. The select pine is already sanded and has finished edges so sanding was not needed. This project could easily be built with 3/4″ plywood, but I would recommend sanding all the edges before assembling the drawer itself. To assemble the drawer, I used pocket holes and Kreg 1 1/4″ pocket hole screws. Then, since I was only storing spices, I attached 1/4″ plywood to the bottom of the drawer with small wood screws and my nail gun. I reattached the drawer front and added hardware.
You’ll notice that between the rows of spice jars, I placed spacers. This was both for organization and safety. Knowing the drawer would be opened and closed often, I didn’t want the contents shuffled about. I used leftover 1x2s cut to the width of the drawer, and using a rubber mallet, hammered them into place.
This drawer build could be used for any unused space in your kitchen or bathrooms. It was a simple afternoon project that is well worth the time. I love the accessibility we have now of our spices, and knowing that we customized our kitchen to fit our family’s needs makes this a project I’m sure to repeat!
My Spice Jar Collection
My beautiful spice jars labels are from The Tidy Pantry. I have the Lind Collection in the 1.25″ W x 2.25″ H size. The Tidy Pantry offers multiple sizes for her spice and pantry labels. There are also top round labels in case your spices are kept in a pull-out cabinet like mine were originally.
My spice jars are from Simple Housewares on Amazon. I ordered two sets of their 24 packs.
Remember your kitchen is YOUR kitchen. Customize it!