How-To: Adding a Kitchen Pantry Cabinet

We’ve been eyeballing the approximately 16 inch space between our living room recliner slide and the kitchen slide for a while now and contemplating using the empty space for additional storage. Taking measurements and looking around, we found a nice cabinet – actually a bookshelf – at IKEA. The particular line is called “Billy”. It is 15 3/4″ wide and about 11 inches deep. Almost a perfect fit for the space we were looking at.

There were matching doors available, but all of them had glass in the top half or both halves of the door. If you bought the shorter bookshelf, you could get a solid wood door for it. We bought two of the shorter doors and they worked just fine with the taller bookcase.

Here is the space we were looking at.

Our blank space

Our blank space

Once the cabinet was assembled, we set it up on the kitchen floor to check height, etc. and generally fit it in the space. We knew we’d have to trim the corner of the living room slide molding. We also trimmed just a touch of the kitchen slide trim.

Base cabinet ready to mount

Base cabinet ready to mount

Trimming the trim

Trimming the trim

With the trim cut back a little, we had plenty of room on both sides of the cabinet for the slides to retract. Malcolm had purchased an extra 12″ x 36″ black shelving board at the home improvement store to make a base to set the cabinet on since it had to “hover” over the kitchen step.

Base support

Base support

With the support in place, we put the unit on top of it and ran a couple screws into the base to hold the unit in place. We also put a couple 3″ angle brackets on the top of the unit to hold it against the wall.

Cabinet mounted

Cabinet mounted

We mounted the doors on the unit. The hinge brackets for the bottom door had to be moved a little from the pre-drilled hole locations, so we drilled a couple new holes for each bracket and mounted everything up just fine. The middle shelf is fixed and that is where the two doors meet.

Doors in place

Doors in place

View from the kitchen side

View from the kitchen side

With the doors in place, we drilled holes for the door handles. We bought two nickel handles that matched the ones we put on all the other cabinets in the trailer a couple years ago. Fortunately, they were still available.

Handles added

Handles added

We were pleased with the result. We’ve started loading up the cabinet with items from around the kitchen. Since there is currently nothing holding the doors shut (for when we are moving), we’re going to add a couple of the magnetic child safety locks we’ve used on a few other cabinets in the trailer to keep the doors from opening in transit.

Load it up!

Load it up!

Costs for the project:

Billy Bookcase in Medium Brown from IKEA – $59.99

Two Oxberg medium brown doors from IKEA – $80.00

Black shelf board 10″ x 36″ – $6.98

Various sizes of corner braces – $10.74

Two nickel handles – $11.94

Total project cost – $183.65 with tax

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2 thoughts on “How-To: Adding a Kitchen Pantry Cabinet

  1. Another fine update project! I do have to ask if you feel that the stairs are “narrower” than they used to be? I just may be the angles of the pictures but it would be a concern for me.

    I really like how you found that extra space. Looking at adding Rev-A-Shelves to our pantry but we maybe giving up too much width for the convenience of pull out shelves.

  2. John, the steps are no narrower than when I had my wood step stool there and it’s about 10″ square. if you look at the last picture, you will see my recliner which sits next to that step area so we are already use to staying closer to the railing than the other side.

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