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Double-Serving Shelves

The desire to bring more natural light into a kitchen is often compromised by the need for upper cabinets for storage. At the same time, conventional kitchen design and cabinetry arrangements can limit outdoor access.

In this recently remodeled kitchen, the west-facing wall sits adjacent to a new outdoor patio space. It made sense to design the kitchen with open shelves backed by casement windows to allow natural light into the kitchen and to create complete access to the shelves from both sides of the exterior wall. The soapstone counter also serves as a convenient pass-through from the kitchen to the outdoor dining space when entertaining during the warmer parts of the year.

The cabinets and shelving are made of Honduras mahogany. They were custom-built for the space and installed as one unit by Wolf and Son Cabinetmakers of Portland. The Marvin casement windows are pine and were stained to match the shelving units.

Storage without sacrifice. The open shelving along the west wall of this kitchen offers the same storage capacity as solid cabinetry without blocking daylight or views of the backyard patio.
From Fine Homebuilding231, Kitchens & Baths, Winter 2012 , pp. 25