Using Used Kitchen Cabinets for Your Renovation Project

Using Used Kitchen Cabinets for Your Renovation Project

Do you have an odd corner space in your kitchen that you’re not sure how to use?

Are you looking for inspiration on how to fill those gaps caused by a few missing uppers or bases?

We’ve got you covered!

On this page, you’ll find simple modification solutions for creating a functional and beautiful kitchen with recycled cabinets.​

Table of Contents

Corner Space Solutions

When you’re trying to fit recycled cabinets into your space, the best place to start is at the corner. It’s the heart of the kitchen and everything else builds out from here.

Use a 45-Degree Angle

By going off a 45-­degree angle at the corner, you give yourself a lot of options. You could install just about any 18-­inch cabinet with a drawer base at this angle. Another idea would be to put in just a cabinet door with open space behind it. How you fill that space is then up to you!

Add a lazy susan with rotating shelves or any other custom shelving that fits your needs. If you want to go bigger, use the corner as your pantry. Either add a pantry cabinet or frame in a small room with a door for a walk-­in option.

We’ve also seen customers use this part of the kitchen for a corner cooktop or oven/microwave combo.

Solutions for Small Gaps

Now that you have some solutions for your corner space, you may be running into a few gaps between your cabinets. The good news is gaps are easy to fill and may even become a favorite part of your kitchen.

Sprinkle in a Spice Rack

If you have a few inches of extra space or a tiny gap between your cabinets, this is a great spot to add a spice rack. Spice racks are super versatile and can go just about anywhere in your kitchen.

Simply find a matching panel to your cabinets and fill the interior with spice rack shelving. A quick Google or Amazon search will pull up all kinds of cool shelving options and built­in organizers for this space. (Try searching the brand Rev­-A­-Shelf!)

Solutions for Missing Uppers

We’ve already covered corners and small gaps, so on the next three sections, you’ll find ideas for what to do if you’re missing entire cabinets.

Open Shelving Saves the Day

One of the easiest ways to fill in gaps caused by missing upper cabinets is to use open shelving. This practical solution will increase your storage area. Plus, it’s much less work to create complimenting shelves versus matching cabinets.

Get Creative with Door Styles

If you want to avoid building cabinets that exactly match the rest of your kitchen, a gorgeous option is to use glass or lattice­style doors.

Store Beverages with a Wine Rack

A wine rack is the perfect place to keep your bottles and glasses.

Above the Fridge Solutions

Keep Your Wine Next to the Ice

Instead of having an entire cabinet made to fit the gap above your fridge, try filling this space with a custom wine rack.

When in Doubt, Use Open Shelving

Just like with missing uppers, open shelving is a functional solution for filling that empty space above the fridge.

Missing Bases Solutions

Use Upside-Down Uppers

We think it’s pretty neat how this kitchen island base incorporates upper cabinets that have been
flipped upside down! 30­inch tall uppers create a regular height island. Taller uppers could be used for a raised bar seating portion.

Another Place for Open Shelving

Are you noticing a pattern here with open shelving? (See our “Above the Fridge” and “Missing Uppers” solutions.) You can install custom open shelving in place of missing cabinet bases, too.

Add Your Appliance of Choice

Instead of adding more cabinets, how about a beverage fridge, a trash compactor, a second dishwasher, or a wine fridge? These options can be fun and are generally more cost­effective than purchasing a custom­made cabinet.

Solutions for Adding an Island

You can have an island even if one didn’t come with your recycled cabinet set! Here are some ways to include this feature.

Islands Can Contrast

Always remember you can buy your island separately from your cabinets and it doesn’t have to match. Instead, it can be a contrasting color to the rest of the kitchen.

Islands Can Be Made Without Cabinets

Islands with pillars and beams create an open and airy look for your kitchen. Not to mention, they provide a spacious seating area. Your island can also have a few cabinets with open shelving mixed in. The bottom line is don’t assume you need to have cabinets to make an island.

Solutions for Contrasting Colors

Your cabinets do not have to be all the same color. In fact, two­tone kitchens are stunning! We’ve even seen examples where the homeowner incorporated not only two but three or four colors throughout their cabinets,
shelves, and island.

Create Your Own Style with Multi Tones

Always remember you can buy your island separately from your cabinets and it doesn’t have to match. Instead, it can be a contrasting color to the rest of the kitchen.