DIY Shelf Above the Stove = Extra Storage in a Small Kitchen

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About: Part MacGyver, part Martha, creator, host and producer of Engineer Your Space, an award winning DIY home design show dedicated to clever, affordable and stylish solutions for common challenges faced by rente...

When you have a small kitchen like I do, you need to use every inch of space that you have. I maximized the use of the space above my stove by adding a simple DIY shelf. It’s the perfect spot for extra large spice containers and cooking utensils: everything is within easy reach when cooking, it frees up precious cabinet space for other things and it turned out to be the perfect addition to my DIY magnetic spice rack and my reconfigured stove top (I took out 2 of the electrical heating elements and used glass cutting boards to cover up the holes to give me more counter space)

Here’s what you’ll need to build this simple shelf: 4″ x 1″ pine board (6 ft – less than $1 per ft), wood glue, wood filler, wood screws, corner clamps, drill and a countersink drill bit, and stain or paint

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Step 1: Cut Pine Board and Apply Glue

Cut 2 pieces of the pine board the width of your stove and 2 pieces 5 inches high for the sides (you can do the cutting at the hardware store or use a miter box and saw) – apply glue to the ends.

Step 2: Clamp Pieces Together

Using 3″ corner clamps, join a long and short piece.

Step 3: Drill Pilot Holes

Drill 2 pilot holes through the top and side piece using a countersink drill bit – this will allow the head of the screws to sink below the surface.

Step 4: Join Pieces Together With Screws

Screw the pieces together, using thin wood screws (this will help avoid the wood splitting).

Step 5: Install Remaining Pieces

Repeat step 1 to 4 for the other side, and then screw in place the remaining long piece.

Step 6: Prepare the Shelf for Staining or Painting

Add wood filler to cover up the screw heads and sand everything.

Step 7: Make It Pretty

Stain or paint – I used Minwax classic gray wood stain. 

Step 8: Add the Shelf Above the Stove

I simply rested my shelf on the top of the stove but adding a bracket to attach it to the wall will make it more stable. This extra shelf space has made me like my kitchen so much more - sometimes it doesn't take much to make a huge difference! 

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    18 Discussions

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    saderman

    3 years ago

    Does it interfere with ventilation at all? Or get hot?

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    EYSpacesaderman

    Reply 3 years ago

    I never had any problems with that but then again, I rarely used the burners at the back.

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    WhiteWolfM

    3 years ago

    One easy way to affix this on the stove without attaching it to the wall, also making it easier to remove for cleaning, is to attach two thin pieces of board that extend downward from the ~back~ of the shelf. You pull the stove out a smidge, slip the shelf into place, and then push the stove back, pinning the 'supports' between stove and wall. Presto. I also added counter shelving in my handicapped apartment by using Walmart wooden shoe racks. Doesn't violate mods to apartment, easily removable for cleaning, but stronger than flimsy plastic ones.

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    cbowers18

    3 years ago

    Storing herbs and spices above the stove exposes them to heat and moisture, which will considerably shorten their shelf life. Light is also the enemy of herbs and spices. Bettter to store them in a cabinet away from the stove, and use your clever shelf for other things you want to have handy when cooking.

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    jodiwer

    3 years ago

    I tried something similar to this but had to take it down as everything got so greasy. I was tired of constantly cleaning each and everything over the stove. Even the idea of a making a cupboard door leaves the shelf and door to be constantly cleaned. Too bad because I would really like to use the space.

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    clontz

    4 years ago on Introduction

    I always sit my salt and pepper on the back of the stove but this would give me room for more spices without feeling like they're going to fall On the glass top stove. I have a natural stone tile backsplash and my husband doesn't want me to put a shelf on the wall so perhaps this would work for us. I have a galley style kitchen without enough counters or cabinets. Thanks for sharing.

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    chloe.stamper

    5 years ago

    I constructed a similar (bit more elaborate) shelf for behind my stove and mounted it to the wall. People are commenting with concerns about warping and fire hazards. In the time you have this have you had any issues with warping, heating, or things falling onto the stove?

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    EYSpacechloe.stamper

    Reply 5 years ago on Introduction

    I didn't have any issues with the shelf - my stove was electric and I had taken out the heating elements of the back burners removing any heat source close to the shelf.

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    jezibel

    5 years ago on Step 8

    I really like that I watched your Picture Frame Jewelry box video (that I LOVE!) because it makes this one easier to understand. I love it... I'm just going to start making my own boxes and shelves for everything now. I've been having crazy ideas for things and can never find what I want at any stores. Thanks!

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    EYSpacejezibel

    Reply 5 years ago on Step 8

    I'm so glad to hear that! I agree with you - it's so much easier to make exactly what you need instead of trying to find something that will work from a store. Have fun!

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    kinderdm

    6 years ago on Introduction

    I like this idea as right now things are just randomly thrown on the top of our stove, with no shelves. This will give a bit more space and much more organization. Cant go too tall though, you get to our hood pretty quick. I also love in your pic using the pizza tray for holding your spices. I was thinking of doing something similar and wasn't sure to use for my backing. This looks much better than anything I was thinking of. Thanks.

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    EYSpacekinderdm

    Reply 6 years ago on Introduction

    I know what you mean about having random stuff on top of the stove - that's what I had before too and I like this so much better! Glad you found my idea helpful!

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    Mihsin

    6 years ago on Introduction

    I shall make the shelf with addition of laminate fiber sliding doors, for protection from oil splatter. Many thanks for a good-small project.
    Best regards.

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    EYSpaceMihsin

    Reply 6 years ago on Introduction

    So glad you've found this idea helpful - and I like your plan to add doors. Hope you'll share pics of your project. Thanks!

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    EYSpaceaudreyobscura

    Reply 6 years ago on Introduction

    You're welcome! It's a simple project that makes a really big difference, at least it did in my kitchen!