The Microwave And The Shelf

The microwave, trust me as a kitchen design professional for many years, is an appliance that is very tricky to place in the kitchen. One of the pros of the microwave as opposed to other appliances is that there are quite a wide range of sizes available to either build it into cabinetry or, in the case of the countertop model, simply put it on a shelf. You also want to try to place it near the refrigerator since you commonly take something out of the refrigerator and pop it into the microwave.

The cons begin with microwaves needing extra depth to install, making it difficult to position it above countertop height where it is most easily accessible. Some microwaves have trim kits that allow them to be built into cabinetry and many do not. It takes SO much space to just place it on a countertop and is not the best look. 

The over-the-range microwave serves a purpose, yes, but the cons overwhelm the single pro of it being off the countertop. Ineffective venting and awkward and dangerous access (imagine foods cooking in pots below) make this installation a worst case scenario, sorry to say.

But, there's another solution!

 Sometimes a microwave on a shelf just works. It can be designed to hide in plain sight!

Sometimes a microwave on a shelf just works. It can be designed to hide in plain sight!

It's the shelf. Sometimes, simply putting a microwave on a shelf just works. You have to first check the depth of both the shelf and the microwave to verify it will fit. In the case of the image above, the shelves are 14" in depth and the microwave is 12" deep. The outlet is recessed into the wall so that the microwave fits.

This is actually a microwave that I've been using on my projects for well over 20 years and it's still as popular as ever! It's the GE Profile Countertop microwave and it's in a stylish, nearly invisible Slate color but it comes in a range of colors. 

Hang it from underneath a wall cabinet or place it on a shelf between standard wall cabinets and it will be close in depth to surrounding cabinetry. That's the beauty of this appliance. It even has a turntable and all the most important functions a microwave needs. I just love this stylish, functional, convenient microwave. It works!