Architectural Home Designs & Decorating Ideas

Boost Your Kitchen Space with Unique Designs for Tall Ceilings

Gabriela Connell
4 minute read

Kitchens with 10 foot ceilings present a unique challenge when it comes to storage space. While the high ceilings make the kitchen feel open and airy, the height limits the usefulness of standard base and wall cabinets. To maximize storage potential in a kitchen with high ceilings, custom cabinetry is key.

Custom cabinets designed to fit your exact ceiling height provide ample storage while also giving your kitchen a built-in, customized look.

Measuring Your Exact Ceiling Height

The first step when planning custom tall cabinets is to determine the exact height from floor to ceiling. Having accurate measurements ensures your cabinets will fit perfectly.

Use tools like a laser measure or standard tape measure to measure multiple points across your kitchen ceiling. Make note of any variations, drops, or soffits that lower the height in certain spots.

10 foot ceiling kitchen cabinets

Tools You’ll Need

To measure ceiling height, have these tools on hand:

Use a ladder or step stool to reach the highest point of the ceiling. For the most accurate readings, measure in multiple spots where you plan to install cabinets.

Measure Multiple Points

Be sure to measure ceiling height in any potential problem areas, like where the ceiling drops for soffits around ductwork. Accounting for these lower spots will allow you to customize your cabinet heights.

Evaluate Your Storage Needs

Before deciding on cabinet heights, think about how you use your existing storage and what needs to be close at hand versus what can be tucked away.

Daily use items like dishes, cooking tools, and food staples should go in standard base and wall cabinets. Focus your custom cabinet design on maximizing space for bulk and special items.

Maximize Vertical Space

A floor-to-ceiling pantry cabinet provides ample storage for bulk goods and overflow appliances. Appliance garages to tuck away stand mixers and processors are also great options.

Use the hard-to-reach top spaces for items you rarely need like large pots, holiday dishes, or extra serving pieces.

Daily Use Storage

Standard 24-36 inch cabinets are best for items you use daily like:

Infrequent Use Storage

Custom cabinets give you room to stow away:

Choosing Cabinet Heights

Once you know your room dimensions and storage requirements, it’s time to choose your cabinet heights.

Standard Cabinet Limitations

With 10 foot ceilings, standard cabinet sizes pose problems:

This leaves a lot of empty, unusable space above your cabinets.

Custom Cabinet Options

For a custom fit, look for these taller cabinet sizes:

Leave Room for Moldings

Most designers recommend leaving at least 6 inches between the top of your tallest cabinets and the ceiling. This allows space for crown moldings, light rails, and other decorative trim.

Custom Cabinet Design Tips

When working with a designer on your custom cabinets, consider these design elements to maximize storage:

Full Extension Drawers

Opt for full extension drawers that allow you to access the entire depth of the drawer. This prevents having to reach to the back of deep cabinets.

Pull-Out Shelves

Incorporate pull-out shelves in lower cabinets to effectively double your storage space. Upper shelves can be used for small appliances.

Sturdy Hardware

Tall cabinets require durable hardware that can support the weight:

Hire Experienced Installers

Due to their size and weight, extra tall cabinets need special installation considerations.


Builders will install blocking, cleats, or ledger boards to firmly anchor tall cabinets into the wall studs.

Fill Any Gaps

Filler strips and specialty trim pieces ensure tall cabinets fit flush to the ceiling for a seamless look.

Ensure Proper Level and Plumb

Precise installation is crucial to prevent issues like binding doors and drawers. Hire experienced kitchen remodeling pros to get it right the first time.

By investing in custom cabinetry sized to fit your 10 foot ceiling, you can gain back all that lost storage space above your old cabinets. Your kitchen will also get a built-in, designer look with storage sized just for your needs.

For more information on maximizing storage with custom cabinets, contact our team of kitchen design experts today.