I am in the process of redoing my kitchen and was hunting around for the perfect insert to keep all of my knives in line. IKEA used to have cheap little black plastic things that you could hook onto the sides of their organizers to safely tuck your knives away but they were just discontinued.
I scoured the web for other knife trays and found a fantastic one that fit all my needs (and maybe yours):
Dial Industries Expand-a-drawer Knife Edition
It's pretty fantastic, right? But... completely OUT of my price-range when you add shipping and special handling fees to Italy from the US or UK.
I looked locally, including Germany which makes beautiful solid-wood wave-shaped knife trays, but all I could find in Italy were custom made knife drawers starting at €100- out of our budget!
More web searches later, I found these great photos from people who made their own knife drawers:
I was inspired!
Made it myself with just wood & glue!
First, I measured my longest knife blade and widest handle, plus my steak knife blade and handle.
I loosely drew what my drawer insert might look like on a piece of paper and then nothing could keep me from jumping into my car and jetting off to the lumber department of my nearest hardware store. I purchased two wood "poles" 220cm long (1cm and 1.5 cm) wide.
It helps to have a husband who can handle a saw, if not, most hardware stores will do the cuts for little or no money. Just be prepared with the exact sizes, measuring tape and a pencil.
While constructing the insert, I stumbled on a very easy shortcut. Originally, I was just planning to anchor the wood down onto the drawer liner with glue until I could reinforce each piece with screws. Well... I was using IKEA's rubber drawer liners and a hot-glue gun and the heat from the glue completely fused the rubber liner to the wood. The hold was very strong and it was completely unnecessary to add screws for reinforcement!
Total cost in materials: €5, satisfaction: priceless!
A couple of tips, if you plan to make your own:
- For the larger knives, make sure to make a tall handle-rest, otherwise, the knife will rock back and the point will stick up from the slats. As you can see, I just added a second level to the handle-rest slat for the large knives.
- The horizontal piece I stuck at the end of the large knife area is purely decorative to hide the uneven cuts!
- If you use a sharpening rod, like I do, adjust the space in the last slat to accommodate it.
- If you have small children about, invest in a drawer child-proofing, or as I like to call it, child-slowing device.
Happy shopping, or gluing!
Links to this post:
- Knife Drawer with glue and wood! IKEA Hacker
- Build a custom knife drawer inexpensively, lifehacker
- How to make a custom knife tray out of wood & glue Reader Tips, the kitchn
- Easy, customized DIY drawer organizer, The Wallflower