Having a few pots and pans in a small cabinet above the kitchen counter worked in college, but as you learn more about cooking and acquire more kitchen utensils, you also need more storage space. In small kitchens this means using whatever space you have. This can be difficult if part of that space is stuck in the far back of a corner cabinet.
If the bottom cabinets in your kitchen run along at least two walls and form at least one right angle, you have a blind corner. This is the storage space inside the cabinet that’s in the corner. Even if there is a door on each side of the “elbow” of the angle, the back of the cabinet is still difficult to reach and quickly becomes wasted space. Adding shelves that swing or roll out to reveal additional shelves tucked in back increases the available storage space. Unfortunately, store-bought blind-corner shelves can be expensive. It is possible to make your own after taking into consideration what you want to store on the shelves and if there is anything else lurking back in the corner.
The large amount of space in the blind corner and the relatively large cabinet door leading to it allow for a variety of storage choices. The Family Handyman (thefamilyhandyman.com) notes you can build two rows of shelves, one that swings out and another that pulls forward, or you can install shelves on the inside of the door that swing out when you pull open the door. These take some planning as you have to ensure the surfaces you choose for shelvesl clear the side of the door’s frame. If you are pressed for time and have the space, a temporary solution is to place a tabletop lazy Susan inside the cabinet. This will not work, though, if there are supports or pipes within the storage space that block the tray’s rotation.
The combined weight of the items can affect how well the shelves roll out of the blind corner, and Kelly Morisseau of Kelly’s Kitchen Sync writes that certain materials, like cheap plastic, aren’t suitable for storing heavy bulk goods. The size of what you want to store affects how many shelves you have and how far apart they are. For example, if you have two blind corner shelves and want to store a large stockpot on the bottom shelf, ensure there’s enough room for you to put in and take out the pot without hitting the top shelf.
Keep in mind that these cabinets are down low, where children can get at them. Do some double-childproofing by adding a latch to the cabinet door and keeping nontoxic items that can’t harm the child in the storage shelves. This prevents the child from ingesting anything toxic, in case the child somehow figures out how to undo the latch, or you forget to close the cabinet door. If you live in an earthquake zone, a latch on the door is a safe idea, even if you don’t have children, because the sudden shaking of a quake can throw open cabinet doors. Any shelves you have that slide out can roll out and hit you.