It is not unusual to have space between the upper kitchen cupboards and the ceiling for one reason or another. While it happens often enough, it can be difficult to fill this gap. There is always a lot to do in the kitchen anyway, and nobody wants to intensify the chaos and make the room top-heavy. Conversely, however, there is the unfruitful, unfinished feeling that could arise if the gap is left completely empty. While there are a variety of successful strategies to decorate this space (see below), a resolute rule remains throughout: No tired looking artificial ivy and dust attracting false grapes!

If you have a viewable collection, you should use the gap between the cabinets to view your collection. The collection could be ceramics or kitchen items (note the cake racks in the photo), but it could really be anything. Think outside the box (or the kitchen) after what you love – statues, mirrors, model cars, etc. – and then you’ll be able to see what you like. One advantage of using this space as a display wall is that it keeps valuable collectibles out of the reach of small hands!

Another method that is useful to decorate the cupboard gap is to find and arrange objects with similar shades. In this example, earthy brown and white tones combine to create a beautiful organic cottage feeling above the cabinets. Note that the objects themselves don’t really have much in common, but using the same colors brings coherence to the display … and to the beautiful, welcoming room as a whole.

If you have the space on your upper heel, you should vary the height of your exhibits. In this example, panels of different sizes are combined with larger urns and shorter round sculptures. While the colour blue is the same for all parts, it is the interesting different heights and shapes that make this arrangement work for me. (I also like the symmetry here; however, it’s not often that the rooms above the cabinet are conducive to symmetry, so this might not work for your own room.)

What if your things aren’t pretty or have nothing in common … or what if you just need the extra shelf? Baskets could only be your solution. Straight baskets maximize space best, while small table labels attached to the front make your life easier when you’re looking for your things. The woven texture and organic nature of the baskets is also a bonus when faced with smooth, shiny, contemporary cabinetry. In this example they also match well with the wooden chest of drawers and the natural carpet.

If the room above your cabinets doesn’t create a bar, or if you’re not used to displaying collections of objects, you can view this room as an extension of your art gallery. Identical frames and matte finishes give the artwork coherence, and the addition of art to the kitchen is both intentional and sophisticated.


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