fiveunderfive_gw

Show me your kitchens with 9ft ceilings

fiveunderfive
9 years ago

We are in the process of starting our dream home build, hoping to break ground in March (once it thaws around here). We modified (made bigger) the plans from the 1999 Life Mag Dream House. I've enclosed a pic from the magazine. Our kitchen will have a very similar layout, except the bank of cabs on the far left (btwn windows and french doors) will be double ovens. We are thinking of placing a side-facing cabinet between the ovens and window to house dishes as the dishwasher will be immediately underneath, and then dead-ending the opposing wall of cabinets into the wall. The windows will be sizable (I think 3 double-hungs totalling about 104 inches?) and will have a nice view of our wooded backyard. That set of windows will be also be mirrored further down to the left of the french doors in the living room. The entire first floor will have 9ft ceilings, except for a cross-shaped walkway from the front door bisecting the LR and kitchen to the french doors out back (you can see this in the pic) and from the stairs bisecting the kitchen and DR out through the pantry and mudroom to the garage, which will be lowered to 8ft.

Hubby and I are in disagreement about how high to run the cabinets. I'd like them to go all the way to the ceiling. I think it looks a bit more finished. Especially if they are topped with molding, and don't just end into a soffit. He wants to stop around 8ft and do a soffit. We are both on the taller side (i'm 5ft 7 and he is 6ft 2) so reaching the highest cabs isnt really an issue, realizing that most of what will be stored up there would be rarely used items anyway. I thought about making those cabs glass front and storing some of our "bar" ware up there. Since the "back" wall will have no uppers, and the side wall will have the fridge, microwave (NOT OTR), and cook top (so few uppers there as well), I am certain will can find use to fill those cabs.

If you have 9 ft ceilings, could you share some pics? I'm curious what others have done.

Here is a link that might be useful: similar kitchen layout

Comments (69)

  • dazedandconfused
    9 years ago
    last modified: 5 years ago

    Katieob- Love, love, love your kitchen. I love the way the cabinets are stacked to the ceiling. I love the range hood. Is it custom? When we do our kitchen I would love something similar.

    Thanks D&C

  • red_eared_slider86
    9 years ago
    last modified: 5 years ago

    I would ixnay the offitsay. I think they are considered outdated.

    My ceilings are 9ft, and I didn't go all the way to the ceiling because I wanted above-cabinet lighting. I ended up with three breakfront-type sections, which I like. That said, I really love the way cabinets to the ceiling look in other's kitchens. Using glass doors helps to avoid a closed-in feeling.

    Here's my somewhat decorated kitchen, without the above-cab lights on:
    {{gwi:1648399}}

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  • boxerpups
    9 years ago
    last modified: 5 years ago

    5under5,

    I love the look of stacked cabs and I know your DH will
    understand once he sees all the great images above.
    Here are a few more to add to your discussion and prove
    yet again the beauty of cabs to the top.
    ~boxer

    Vertical Fir cabinetry

    Jennifer Gilmer Designer MD

    Dobosenski Kitchen

    Earth Wise

    Austin Tx

    Jack Rosen DC Kitchen designs

    Bene Kitchen

    RMS Cynthia A

    Antique White Cabs Believable Buff Walls

    Sunset Kitchens

    CKS Design Studio

    Daisy Pink Cupcake Blog

  • pricklypearcactus
    9 years ago
    last modified: 5 years ago

    Thanks for sharing these pictures. They are all fantastic. Momqs, your kitchen is stunning! I don't think I've seen it before.

  • rosie
    9 years ago
    last modified: 5 years ago

    Fiveunder five (?!), soffits happening to be out of style during the period you're building your house doesn't mean their potential contributions should be dismissed out of hand.

    Susan Susanka, a very well regarded architect and designer of homes, is a big fan of soffits as a design tool for creating a feeling of shelter. A kitchen with people inside separated from the outside by a 4" wall and glass window feels very different from one in which people inside are separated from the world outside by a window PLUS the depth of a band of surrounding cabinets and soffit. This is especially true where the window faces the street or neighbors. Owners in those cases tend to keep the windows covered a lot more than others even when privacy isn't an issue. Of course, cabinets can be used to create much the same effect as a soffit--creating a center more sheltered space for people to occupy (something that seems particularly appealing today--I have no uppers or soffits at all between us and the weather outside, just windows :).

    In any case, as you are building a new home--and if you haven't already done so, I strongly recommend reading even one of her books and plumbing it for ideas--before making more important decisions. They're good ones.

  • momqs
    9 years ago
    last modified: 5 years ago

    Fiveunderfive - Our cabinets are full overlay and frameless so we do have tons of space up there, but we really did it for the look and the lack of dusting, so the space was just a bonus.

    Prickly - thanks!- our kitchen has been almost finished since Nov but we are still waiting for new fridge doors to be installed (long story that includes DH breaking the handle the day before the installer was coming). The installer is coming next Tuesday and then I promise to post our finished kitchen!

  • research_queen
    9 years ago
    last modified: 5 years ago

    momqs - i agree. your kitchen is absolutely stunning. can't wait to see final pics!

  • doonie
    9 years ago
    last modified: 5 years ago

    We have 9 ft ceilings. And in planning, I initially wanted to the ceiling cabinetry, but because of the wooden cabinets, and narrowness, and lack of interior windows, we elected to have varying heights.

    I really think that this choice is individual to your layout. Variables include natural light, color of of cabinetry and narrowness of the kitchen.

    So, in our kitchen, with medium tone cherry, we did vary the height.

    {{gwi:1554059}}

  • mtnrdredux_gw
    9 years ago
    last modified: 5 years ago

    Too funny someone mentions Susanka ... I happened to be reading one of her books tonight and came across a section on "shelter" where she did indeed praise soffits for the sense of protection or intimacy (paraphrasing here).

    All that said, I see some very nice examples in this thread of cabs that stop short of the ceiling. Don't feel compelled to do it if it really hurts your budget. There are many really nice approaches that don't go right up to the ceiling.

  • kateskouros
    9 years ago
    last modified: 5 years ago

    we have 9' ceilings in the kitchen. i chose this view so you could see cabs to the ceiling and also open space on top. please don't make the mistake of putting in a soffit...

    {{gwi:1446454}}

  • gbsim1
    9 years ago
    last modified: 5 years ago

    Just to balance things out a bit and give you other photos to look at, here's my 1985 kitchen which we refreshed but didn't change the cabinets or layout.

    We probably couldn't have afforded to go all the way to the ceiling when we built anyway but I can't picture them going all the way up.... guess I'm just used to it! We've got a farmhouse style home and so the "old-fashioned" look works for us.

  • marthavila
    9 years ago
    last modified: 5 years ago

    I am yet another with 9'ceilings with custom cabs that don't go the ceiling. This was a very conscious design choice that I don't regret. Having lived with a kitchen for more than 20 years that had a run of upper cabs which went all the way to the ceiling (the rest of it was unfitted), I realized I never used the items that were on the top shelves of those cabs! Shorty that I am, even with the aid of a step stool, things stationed there were just too high up for me to bother with them. The uppermost shelves were just dump space.

    In planning my reno, I knew I'd be adding another whole run of upper cabs to the kitchen. That change alone more than compensated for the loss of storage at ceiling height. Plus, I installed lighting above the cabs. The overall effect is that in my small, galley kitchen, I now have "breathing space" between the cab tops and ceiling which helps to create a better sense of openness. The up lights are great for creating mood.

    BTW, the soffit above the range hood was intentionally built in order to hide the venting ductwork.

  • regina_phalange
    9 years ago
    last modified: 5 years ago

    Our kitchen has 9' ceilings. Keep in mind, this is my "before" picture, ha ha but the new cabs will also be stacked like this. I dislike soffits.

  • artemis78
    9 years ago
    last modified: 5 years ago

    We went all the way up our 9' ceilings---here's the before with panel-covered soffit and the after without (yes, that second photo is all the way up, though it looks staggered---those doors are actually the same height!)

  • doonie
    9 years ago
    last modified: 5 years ago

    Fun thread! Great kitchens!

    Marthavila....Now I see a little more of your kitchen! It's beautiful. I love the red oven! You are such a tease, we ever get to see more?

    For those concerned with the dust issue on top of the cabinets, I had mine finished with plywood on top (although I should have had them varnish it too). My MIL has mentioned putting newspapers up there to catch the dust/dirt and then throwing them out every so often. I haven't done that yet because it seems messy to me. But it may be a consideration.

    Rhome, Like everyone else here, I have photos of your kitchen saved as inspiration. I love your kitchen color/texture choices and the varied heights. It's a very comfortable and pleasurable working area!

    momqs, I don't think I have seen your kitchen before. It's beautiful. Is that cherry cabinetry?

    kateskouros, It's coming along nicely. You've got to be really excited! It's a stunning kitchen! I can hardly wait for you to be in there cooking and living. What a great space!

    lizard2you, You have a warm inviting kitchen. We varied our heights for the same reason you did. With the wood it would overwhelm a small space. Another gorgeous kitchen!

    Boxerpups, as always, you amaze me with your hunting skills and generosity of time in finding all these great photos for folks to get ideas from. I can't get enough of seeing all of these different styles of kitchens!

  • fiveunderfive
    9 years ago
    last modified: 5 years ago

    Thank you all for the insight and pics (especially boxerpups!). I really appreciate it and can't wait to sit down with hubby and look at everything.

    For those of you who have "other" ceiling heights (10ft, 9.3 ft, 9 1/2 ft) is that carried throughout the entire floor or just the kitchen? And was that done specifically to accommodate the cabs the way you wanted, or did you adjust the cabs to fit the space? Since this is a new build, we could essentially make the ceilings whatever we want, though the plans already spec 9ft for the first floor and 8 for the 2nd. I'm just wondering what the advantages/disadvantages are of the additional inches.

    It's funny you mentioned Susanka, Rosie! She was actually one of the original architects on the house plans we are using. DH has ALL of her books, and we are utilizing many of her ideas. We like to joke that we are building an enlarged "not-so-big" house for our growing "not-so-small" family. (number 6 is on the way and due in the next few weeks). The lowered ceiling height for the "walkways" are one of her ideas, and we have incorporated soffits and lowered ceilings elsewhere in the house, most notably to create nooks in the bedrooms. Our kitchen will have that one large bank of windows along the back wall that looks out unto woods. The opposite wall of the house (dining room) has a window too that does look out onto the street, but the house is set back a fair distance from the road, and we are hoping to keep a decent barrier of trees to keep it feeling more private. Also, the front has a roof overhang and a largish front porch that will add to the privacy/intimacy I think (I hope!).

  • dermnp
    9 years ago
    last modified: 5 years ago

    mairin, your kitchen is gorgeous! Is that a dark stain on your cabinets? Do you happen to know the cabinet heights of your stacked cabinets? I really like the symmetry you have.

  • corgi_mom
    9 years ago
    last modified: 5 years ago

    I too love the uppers to the ceiling look and have it now. The present ceiling height is 8 feet. I want to go all the way up in our new home. My DH is concerned about the extra cost. I told him about everyone showing their tall cabinets. He said, " Are they showing you their credit cards?" Guess he'd like to pass the hat! lol. I have a few more months to 1] Save money for my hopes and 2] Work on DH! Love all the great kitchens you all have shared.

  • nini804
    9 years ago
    last modified: 5 years ago

    You asked about other ceiling heights...we are building a custom home (it is currently in the framing stage) and our architect did all 10 ft ceilings on the first floor and 9 ft on the second. In my kitchen, the cabinet heights vary. Our vent hood is "hidden" in cabinetry, and that one goes all the way up. For the rest, the KD suggested putting 3-piece stacked trim over the top of the 42 in cabinets, as going all the way up with cabinetry with 10 ft ceilings would be overwhelming for my 5'2" self! :) The cabinets don't go across in a straight line, some are deeper, so that gives even more architectural interest. It will be several months...but I will certainly post pics when the cabs are installed.

  • sandn
    9 years ago
    last modified: 5 years ago

    We second Rosie's mention of Susan Susanka, a very pragmatic architect who makes sound architectural principles accessible to homeowners. She regards ceilings as one of the most neglected planes in room design, and one with huge potential to affect mood and sustain interest.
    When we designed our kitchen, we needed to merge two rooms, one with ceilings over 9 1/2', and one with ceilings just under 9'. Our solution is a tray ceiling--a higher central area to preserve a sense of airiness and expansiveness, and a lower ceiling all around the perimeter area, dining area, and pantry alcove, for that very feeling of intimacy others have mentioned. Our upper cabinets will run right up to meet the lower perimeter ceiling. I think the secret to whether a soffit makes or breaks a space is whether it is planned as an integral part of the design or simply stuck in as a contingency. There are beautiful examples of kitchens with and without soffits, but since you have the luxury of a blank slate, I think designing your ceiling especially for your kitchen could be a great advantage--allowing you to work with available cabinet sizes while adding real architectural interest to the frame of your room. It sounds as though you already know all of this. We look forward to seeing your plans.

  • artemis78
    9 years ago
    last modified: 5 years ago

    @corgi_mom, the cost can also come down considerably depending on how the cabinets are designed. With our cabinetmaker, ours didn't cost much more than doing single cabinets there because they're designed as a single box that's separated into sections, so our cabinetmaker counted the uppers to the left of our refrigerator enclosure as one big cabinet. In contrast, had we ordered those cabinets stock, they were going to order those as four separate cabinets, and then there was an extra fee to have the seams combined, which made it cost prohibitive for us. So it's definitely worth looking at various options. We did our plan first and then I took it to various shops and cabinetmakers to see what the same cabinets would cost at different places---that was really helpful in making tradeoffs and decisions.

  • cotehele
    9 years ago
    last modified: 5 years ago

    Cabinets that go all the way to the ceiling can be stunning. I've seen many such kitchens on GW. Most of my favorites are white. I felt dark wood cabinets to the 10ft. ceiling in our ~ 13.5 x 14.5 foot kitchen would feel too much like a cave. As well, I wanted a furniture look rather than built-in, which is the case with most to the ceiling cabinet kitchens. Just another option. Here is a pic.

  • marthavila
    9 years ago
    last modified: 5 years ago

    Wow, Cotehele! I have long been a drooling admirer of your kitchen, but I don't think I've ever seen photos of it from this perspective. Shucks, if I hadn't already done so, this photo is clinches the deal on your kitchen being added to my all-time GW faves list. And I totally agree with your decision not to take your cabs all the way to the ceiling; it would have been too "confining." But the matching wood trim at ceiling line? Fabulous!

    Doonie -- thanks so much for your kind words, along with the now-famous inquiry as to the whereabouts of the rest of my kitchen. All I can say to that is what I've been saying for the past 2+ years now: there will "soon" be a reveal (as she crosses fingers, lights candles and chants. Oh -- and checks her wallet). Just you wait and see. lol!

  • carriea
    9 years ago
    last modified: 5 years ago

    artos:
    thanks for your comments, our paint color is BM silver marlin

    fiveunderfive:
    yes the wall with the cookbook niche comes to a strange triangular point. We contemplated straightening it out during the design stage but wanted to avoid opening up the proverbial can of worms. So we embraced the quirkiness and built the niche. It is only about 13 inches deep.

    As to your other question, we love the microwave drawer, it is perfect for the kids and I wanted the microwave somewhat hidden. We had an otr micro in our old house, and never thought it did a good job venting the kitchen and thought it was too high.

    good luck with your decision--some fabulous kitchens in this thread.
    Carrie

  • cotehele
    9 years ago
    last modified: 5 years ago

    Marthavila, the few pictures of your kitchen have me anxioiusly waiting for the whole picture. The red AGA and hood are stunning, and I've always been a sucker for white cabs and marble. I do understand, though. I have been waiting much too long for the marble backsplash. We have had a few unexpected financial priorities, so I have not bugged the stone shop much. I think I might put in beadboard with a shelf on top instead. If I really like it, okay. If not, the stone is still an option.

  • rhome410
    9 years ago
    last modified: 5 years ago

    I know I have saved pics of your kitchen, Cotehele, but I also don't think I've seen one from this perspective. I have it now! ;-) SO many plan changes and different ideas, and you settled on perfection. :-D

    I send my thanks to Doonie for the kind words, too!

  • Shira S
    9 years ago
    last modified: 5 years ago

    Cotehele, where are there more pictures of your kitchen? Its beautiful and totally inspiring!

  • cotehele
    9 years ago
    last modified: 5 years ago

    saw50st8, thanks. There are no organized pics to share. I don't want to hijack this thread. I'll try to get something together and post a link in a new thread.

    Rhome, :-) Your help was essential to a great layout!

  • plumberry
    9 years ago
    last modified: 5 years ago

    We have a mid cent modern 9' ceiling with soffit (by the way, with the soffit they were custom cabinets -so in this case soffits were more about design and providing a "built in" look)-our new design will include higher cabinets but still with soffit-just less of it and, it will be recessed over some sections of the cabinets and will provide an overhang for lighting over another section. We have windows that begin at 7' 6", and the ceiling height is not the same throughout, so in our case, architecturally the cabs look best with some form of soffit. It was tough figuring this one out. We are still in planning stages so don't have photos to share --waiting for renderings.

  • farmgirlinky
    9 years ago
    last modified: 5 years ago

    I think I'm in the marthavila and cotehele camp, we like the look of a ceiling extending back over the cabinet so that it would look less fitted -- it is true that whatever goes up that high is dead space, even the upper cabinets above our fridge will rarely be used: we keep things like fish poachers and fondue pots and monorail transformers in those!

    We wanted there to be a plane that was defined by the trim over the windows, above which the ceiling sort of floats. The room would seem smaller if the cabinets went to the ceiling, I think. I do like the photographs in this thread that show a mix of cabinet heights. All these kitchens are beautiful, in fact.

    Pardon that these photos aren't dressed up, and ignore DH's glass of bourbon if you are a teetotaler! Various bits of trim have yet to be installed, but you'll get the idea.

    Lynn

    {{gwi:1648420}}bums/ff402/farmgirlinky/IMG_0844-1.jpg" border="0" alt

    {{gwi:1648421}}

    {{gwi:1648422}}

  • kateskouros
    9 years ago
    last modified: 5 years ago

    marthavila: i want to see pics of your kitchen again too! i remember you posted a while ago, but it's been too long. PLEASE?

  • coll4
    9 years ago
    last modified: 5 years ago

    We have 9 ft ceinings and we did not stack them all the way up. I regret it now. It would have given it a more custom, finished look.

  • megradek
    9 years ago
    last modified: 5 years ago

    drmnp: sorry for the delay, just getting back to this thread to check out everyone's beautiful pictures! The cabinets are custom, stained "java" on walnut. The lower upper cabs are 34" (height)x 15" with varying depths (15" and 12" on cooktop wall, 20" on the oven wall). The upper glass cabs are 13"(height)x15" (width). I use the uppers to house seldom used china and crystal, and vases. hope this helps!

  • rhome410
    9 years ago
    last modified: 5 years ago

    Farmgirlinky, What a wonderful mix of sleek contemporary and warm traditional elements you have. Love it!

  • prill
    9 years ago
    last modified: 5 years ago

    WOW, this is a great thread just to see all the beautiful kitchens.

    Cotehele I haven't seen your cabinets since you put in the tin. Can you show some close ups?

  • cotehele
    9 years ago
    last modified: 5 years ago

    Prill, I just posted this link to a few annotated pics, including the punched tin, for saw50st8.

  • lolauren
    9 years ago
    last modified: 5 years ago

    We have 9' ceilings and stacked cabinets all the way up. I love the look and am thrilled we did it. I didn't like my last kitchen with shorter cabinets.. the dust was bad for a girl with allergies.

    I need a step stool to reach our uppers, but so what? :) I put things there like seasonal items, platters, etc...... things I need, but not often. It's nice to have that extra storage space rather than wasting it.

    {{gwi:1635193}}
    {{gwi:1566992}}

    More photos here...

  • cotehele
    9 years ago
    last modified: 5 years ago

    lolauren, your kitchen is beautiful. I love the table look of the island and the detail of the moldings and trim of the windows and crown.

  • lolauren
    9 years ago
    last modified: 5 years ago

    cotehele ---- thanks!! :)

  • thrilledtobuild
    9 years ago
    last modified: 5 years ago

    Lolauren, would you mind sharing the heights of your two sets of upper cabinets and crown at the top? I love your uppers - that's exactly how I hope ours turn out! Thanks!

  • organic_nettie
    9 years ago
    last modified: 5 years ago

    I love my new kitchen, but I too made the mistake of not taking the cabinets all the way to the ceiling. All the pictures of my inspiration kitchens went to the ceiling, but when I went to order my cabinets I did not order them that way. I really don't know why. (it was not the cost factor) I totally regret that. I previously had a soffit, which was very easy, just wipe and it was clean. now I put greens and large plates on top (even though it looks lovely) I hate the thought of having to clean on top and wash the plates and greens which collect dust and grease. Especially as you get older, it is a lot more work. I know you have to climb a ladder to reach the high cabinets, but guess what, I still have to get a stool for the third shelf on my cabinets.

  • rosie
    9 years ago
    last modified: 5 years ago

    Just got back to read what's been happening. What gorgeous kitchens! A couple would aaalmost convert me to the furniture look, even though I've always (since childhood probably) loved a built-in look for a kitchen.

    Which is an awfully important point newbies to their designs probably don't consider right out when it needs to be -- do they really love boxes bolted to the wall (my usual description but wholly inappropriate to some of the works of art here) or built in?

    Five, your design sounds luscious. I can't wait to see pictures. We dropped the ceiling in a single little hall (budget build), but its contribution is so real (and maintenance-free :) that if I had it to do over there would have been more.

    Regarding dust-catcher tops, having a shadow line up there can be another simple but significant aesthetic contribution. If we'd done that, I was going to mount a vertical "back" to it, painting it a deeper color if necessary to hide it, so I only had to run a vac hose over the front few inches.

  • mtnrdredux_gw
    9 years ago
    last modified: 5 years ago

    We are currently renting a house (it was supposed to be for only 2 months, so we could start school here while our GC finished ....argggh) and just realized it has cabs that dont go all the way up.

    I think it looks pretty nice.

    Here is a link that might be useful: rental kitchen

  • lolauren
    9 years ago
    last modified: 5 years ago

    thrilledtobuild: Sure. :) The crown is about 7.5"H, the upper cabinet about 15.5"H and the bottom cabinet is about 32"H.

    {{gwi:1648425}}

  • sombreuil_mongrel
    9 years ago
    last modified: 5 years ago

    Hi, I decided after much internal dialog to post a picture. It's not 9', but it is less than 10'.

    Casey

  • marthavila
    9 years ago
    last modified: 5 years ago

    Why the internal dialogue, Casey? Glorious to see, as always, if there is any GW kitchen that deserves a seat at this particular "show and tell" table, it's yours!

  • cotehele
    9 years ago
    last modified: 5 years ago

    Casey, I always admire your kitchen! The soffit treatment is very creative and looks great. What is the oven is under the toaster oven? It doesn't look like a MW.

  • sombreuil_mongrel
    9 years ago
    last modified: 5 years ago

    Hi,
    Thanks! The oven is an Advantium 120 of 06 vintage.
    Misgivings on account of ceiling not _exactly_ 9 feet.
    Casey

  • tinny
    9 years ago
    last modified: 5 years ago

    Just wanted to say not to discount the soffit! We built a house from one of Susanka's books and the plans called for a number of soffits. I agonized over whether or not to put them in, and in the end I did. I love how cozy they make the house feel. IMO they don't look dated. Here are a few pics. The ceilings are 9 feet and the soffits dropped to 8. Sorry these aren't the best quality, I just quickly snapped them with my phone. Colors were inspired by jbrodie. ;-)

    Here is a link that might be useful: Soffits

  • fiveunderfive
    9 years ago
    last modified: 5 years ago

    Thanks so much for all the replies! WOW! I am not opposed to soffits in general, and there are a number of kitchens here with soffits that look much better than I thought could be possible. We do have a bunch of "lowered ceilings" throughout the house, I just wasn't sure I wanted another soffit in the kitchen, especially since it would be only one one wall of the L. Your pics have given me lots of ideas, and hubby has agreed that for out kitchen, going all the way up makes sense.