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Old 11-09-2011, 12:22 PM   #1
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Open shelving: glasses up or down?

Hi!

I'm renovating an old farmhouse and have gotten around to the question of cabinets in my kitchen. This farmhouse is a true antique and has never had cabinets. I'm strongly considering mounting fixed shelves and then creating upper "cabinet doors" that either swing out or slide laterally using re-purposed window sashes that we removed when we replaced all the windows.

All this to ask: if some/all of my shelving remains open, what is the collective wisdom here about how we stack clean glasses for maximum sanitation: up or down? (Up means kitchen dust/grease goes in while they're waiting to be used; down means that the glass rims touch a surface while waiting for us to use them.)

Opinions?

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Old 11-09-2011, 12:31 PM   #2
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Welcome to Discuss Cooking, and congrats on your new kitchen.
I've always stored my glasses down, because that's what my mother did. Actually, I never thought about the rims touching the surface but you have a point. Keeping that in mind, I guess glasses that are used daily should be stored up, and glasses that are rarely used should be stored down. On the other hand, I store wine glasses up, but I only use two of them daily. Me thinks I'm over thinking this.
I'm a big help, huh?
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Old 11-09-2011, 01:13 PM   #3
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down.
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Old 11-09-2011, 01:42 PM   #4
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Down. If you live where there are any bugs, it's horrifying to find a dead one in your upright glass!
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Old 11-09-2011, 01:58 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Zhizara View Post
Down. If you live where there are any bugs, it's horrifying to find a dead one in your upright glass!
My sediment exactly!
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Old 11-09-2011, 01:59 PM   #6
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Down. Line the shelves with shelf paper that can be changed every few months. It will help keep the rims clean and healthy for use.
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Old 11-09-2011, 02:10 PM   #7
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OK; those make sense. On to bowls and other serving/storage items on the open shelves... Comments? Concerns?

Then, also, how many of us use a pot rack that's out in the open. This kitchen that I'm doing comes with an antique, dual fuel wood-burning/electric cook stove. :D I am thinking of installing a pot rack above it both for space use reasons and for the rustic effect. (Oh, btw, there's no range hood/exhaust at all in this kitchen, nor likely to be unless absolutely necessary.)

I'm concerned, though, that I'll have to wash each and every pot before using it. True or false?
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Old 11-09-2011, 02:19 PM   #8
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If you hang pots over the stove, they will be dirty in no time and keep getting dirty. Not only is that a pain in the butt if you want to cook with one of them, it will also gross to anyone walking into your kitchen.
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Old 11-09-2011, 02:51 PM   #9
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Wouldn't it be fun to have a window back in time and be able to see that antique kitchen that never had any cabinets? My guess is that pots and pans were hung all over the walls without the smallest concern about soot or dust.

Andy has a point however. Could the pot rack be hung somewhere else, rather than over the stove?
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Old 11-09-2011, 03:15 PM   #10
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You know, I don't think it matters much. (Unless you have the aforementioned bugs.) Kitchens tend to have a lot of stuff floating around in the air, and if glasses sit out for long, they're going to get visually soiled, whether up or down. But you're not going to come to any harm from anything that might land on them. Aesthetically, up looks more "magazine kitchen." When I survey commercial photographs, I find them pictured on open shelves both ways, with the majority going to open end up.

Still, something in me wants to turn them top down when they're out in the open.

I store bowls strictly upright. An exception would be copper bowls that will be used for egg whites. I leave them down so as not to catch airborne kitchen grease that will have to be rigorously cleaned up to avoid spoiling the whites.

Prior to 1900, kitchens almost universally had everything stored on open shelving. It was about that time that the "modern kitchen" began to be touted as being exemplified by closed cabinetry. Of course, those were the upper-upper class kitchens, not tenement kitchens where it wasn't unusual for the kitchen "counter" to be laid on top of the bathtub or to have a sink large enough to bathe in. The old homes around here (South Texas) didn't even have kitchens. Cooking was done in the detached cook house. It was just too hot to have it inside.
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