If you are remodeling your kitchen or bath, one of the options you have is to float your cabinets off of the floor.
There are many advantages to floating your cabinets. The largest advantage is to increase the visual feel of the volume of space of the kitchen or bath. This benefit is particularly pronounced in small to medium kitchen or bath spaces where every inch matters, and the visual reward can be tremendous.
This is a 3-Dimensional equation, and must be thought through in 3-D fashion to enjoy the benefits of floating cabinets.
We think about gaining volume for your room in many ways:
Volume below the base cabinets.
Volume above the upper cabinets.
Volume in front of the cabinets.
Volume under high bars.
Volume under floating sinks.
Volume above/below/besides floating shelves.
Your eye can be led under and over the kitchen or bath cabinets and in doing so makes the room appear bigger. The ability of your eye to see under the base cabinet as a continuum has an enormous impact on how you perceive the space. It opens it up. Most kitchen or bath base cabinets have a 5” toe kick before the actual cabinet space starts above the toe kick. By floating kitchen base cabinets e.g. 10” above the floor you only compromise your storage space by 5”. The visual difference is much greater than that 5”.
This is also true of upper cabinets. By leaving room above your cabinets instead of going all the way to the ceiling once again the visual trick is intact, and creates the feel of a much bigger room. The continuous flow of crown moulding appears much cleaner to the eye…and the illusion is complete. Its a cleaner and more modern kitchen and bath look.
Upper kitchen cabinets typically are useful only up to about 7.5’ above the floor…above that most people can’t reach without a chair.
We dare ask the question…is all that cabinet volume necessary?
Only 1 way to find out, and that is to empirically measure the volume of your “stuff”…pots, pans, dishes, glasses, etc. It’s never a bad exercise to have an annual exercise to donate excess/unused items to charity, be it from your clothes, your garage or your kitchen cabinets.
Donate pans and pots and dishes and glasses that you have not used that are just collecting dust and taking up space, and causing you to think you need more cabinet volume than is required.
In this fashion you’ll have better access and more efficient storage for that which remains.
Downing Designs showroom has floating cabinets, floating sinks, floating glass shelves and floating Glass Countertop High bars… Do you see a theme here? We have seen far too many kitchens and baths where HEAVY feeling cabinets are unnecessarily installed everywhere and this visually repels our eye.
By taking away “heavy” looking elements that take up space i.e. full length kitchen cabinets, full vanity cabinets, and knee walls for hi bars we open up the visual space.
Adding pure White Glass Countertops adds to the visual expansion as well.
When you look at our small showroom it has a much larger feel. It has White Glass Countertops on its periphery to make this small space feel more spacious. And that’s exactly the idea we want to reflect. Floating shelves with LED lighting illuminates the glass bottles set upon them. The same could be true of wine glasses in an open-shelf setting. Easy access to glasses used routinely is smart, convenient and nice way to show off fine glassware or colorful spirit bottles.
Our Glass Countertop High Bar also adds to the floating feel and is amazing. It floats atop (2) custom metal brackets that hide the LED supply cord internally and is 127” x 20”. Had we used a knee wall, it would have divided the room visually. This design has a very modern, airy feel and is great fun to be seated at that high bar with a glass of wine.
Our Glass Sinks are floated as well. Not only is it a clean look that allows beautiful downlighting of the glass pattern onto the floor, but it also serves as ADA ready sink. This is typically important in restaurants where bathroom space is precious and owners want 1 beautiful, universal sink design to serve handicap [patrons and non-handicap patrons alike.
Further, it appears we are all getting older each day. Designing for the day when we may be wheelchair-bound is never a bad idea. Do it once…do it right…do it so it will be practical well into the future.
The best part about this minimalist style of floating cabinets, floating sinks and floating High bars is that it actually costs less.
We are huge proponents of minimizing the amount of upper cabinets that you buy at the start of your project… You can always add more cabinets if you feel the need.
We like to say design for the 99% not the 1%. This means that don’t design for the annual Thanksgiving dinner, but rather design for everyday use… which may be one, two or three people.
The depth of your cabinets also can be customized to suit your space. For example, you wouldn’t use 24” deep cabinets in small bathrooms because it takes up too much room. The same thinking can be true in the kitchen or any room. Visualize what a skinnier cabinet can do for the living space.
Good cabinet fabricators can make your cabinets any depth you specify. Again by keeping the visual space open and floated with a minimalist cabinet design you free up the visual space in your kitchen or bath.
Take a look at some of the following pictures. Each of them offer some interesting insight into the value of floating kitchen or bath cabinets.
Thoughtful space planning will pay dividends for you during your stay in your home or condo, and will also pay dividends at resale time.
Think about this…Let’s say that you’re in a condominium or in a development where floor plans are very similar, if not identical. If two houses possess an identical square footage and are on the market for identical prices, the one that feels bigger and more contemporary will always get the bid.
Something to consider when planning your next kitchen or bath remodel.
Give us a call to discuss how floating your kitchen or bath cabinets can achieve great results for you as well.
(813) 784 5211