Kitchen mavens: Those Vertical Hinged Cabinets-Do You Like Them?

In modern kitchens, designers are placing the cabinet doors in a vertical direction. Unlike the conventional doors, the cabinet doors open upwards.
I like the look of these-but are they actually practical? I’d like some input on this.

For a start, it seems like either the cabinets have to be lower, or you have to be taller, in order to close the doors. That is, if the door opens upwards, when it’s open the handle is up there pretty high.

This kind of cabinet arrangement seems like a solution looking for a problem - i.e. it looks hip but it doesn’t get you anything practical (such as more storage space).

My partner is much shorter than I am, but we can both open all the cabinet doors. He just has to stand on a stool if he is going to do anything on the top shelf. It would not be good if he had to stand on a stool every time he wanted to use a cabinet (or else leave the door open). Maybe they have some solution for this issue, it seems like it would be a potential problem for lots of people.

Now tambour doors (like a roll-top desk) might be cool, you would only have to push them up as high as you wanted, and it wouldn’t be a disaster if they stayed open a little. But that arrangement does take up some of the storage room at the top and back of the cabinet, besides being more expensive.

I’ve got them. There’s no height issue with mine. The hinges are spring-loaded, so if you can reach the handle at the bottom to open the cabinets, and just lift it a bit, the doors keep going up. And there’s a pull cord that dangles down to close them (and then sort of reels up as you close them).

I get a bit more storage space, since no room is needed between cabinets for the doors to open (although that’s not much space). And they look quite nice.

Can someone provide a link, I have never seen them (and google didn’t provide satisfactory results).

I would WAG that such a door could be much wider then a conventional cabinet door.

I’d love a link, too, as I can’t picture what you’re talking about in my head.

It sounds to me that this arrangement puts the open cabinet door out of the way. For that reason, it could be useful

Here’s a pic.

(Wow, that’s one long URL, boss!)

If they were spring-loaded so you could open them part way, that would help. If you have to push them all the way up before they would stay open, that’d just be a nasty waste of effort.

Looking at the picture, I can envision fixing them permanently in the open position…and using them as additional shelves!

If the contents of the cabinets have shifted so that they fall out when you open them, there’s an even chance that the falling objects won’t land on your toes or feet. With conventional doors, the objects are not only likely to land on your head and/or feet, they’re also likely to have fallen farther.

At least, that’s how it works in my kitchen.

Your kitchen needs some serious de-cluttering, but in any case that advantage would work if the door’s hinges are on the bottom, not if they’re on the top like Sanity Loser describes.

Ethilrist: I don’t see the angles there. If you open either kind of door just a crack, and a can o’ beans falls out, it’s going to fall the same way, innit? How does a vertically opening door deflect the can differently than a horizontally opening door? Once the can is out, it can only go down.

I’ve never had the sense that my cabinet doors were in the way of anything when they are open. We tend to go into only one cabinet at a time, opening and then closing it, and if we then have to go into a 2nd cabinet, do the same.

However, as Saintly Loser describes their operation, my objection about needing to be tall goes away. Then it’s just a matter of taste, I guess.

Thanks for the link.

I think it’s a really cool idea and it looks great in the pictures. I think it works well with a “modern” kitchen. I’m already on the short side and have to use a stool to get stuff off a lot of the shelves, so I would probably adjust to having to reach up to close them, or have a pull cord or something.

My friend just renovated his kitchen, and he has a couple of these. However, his are of the wide but narrow variety - they’re maybe 3 feet long by only about 1 foot high. He has them over his fridge and over the sink; spaces that usually use shorter cabinets anyway. It’s a good use of space, and they’re not mounted so high that you can’t reach the door when it’s open to close it.

He got his from Ikea, and they’ve got spring-loaded closures, so that even if you were to “slam” the door down, it’s got braking on it and it’ll close quietly. They seem pretty keen.

It doesn’t deflect it; if the door is hinged at the top, and the can is a foot or two off to your left, it’s not going to fall on you. If the door is hinged at the side, the can is going to fall on you, and maybe from higher up.

I’m being mostly facetious here, but it does seem to be a basic choice. More to the point, I think this is just design inspired by people who have spent way too much time in the file room at work, because I see filing cabinets with the horizontal doors hinged at the top all the time there.

I can definitely see the advantage in not having a corner to smash your head into when picking something off the floor.

Exactly. That’s the appeal I can see. Also, if you open adjacent cabinets with conventional vertical hinges, the door for one can whack against the door for the adjacent cabinet. The vertical opening cabinets would avoid this issue.

Is having cans of stuff falling out of cabinets something that happens a lot to some of you?

I had kids. Entropy is a powerful force in my life.

Mine look a lot like that, except that each cabinet only has one door, rather than the two (over and under) in the pictures. I just have one door that covers all the shelves. It folds up as it opens.