How to Make Kitchen Island Out of Base Cabinets?

How to Make Kitchen Island Out of Base Cabinets

Are you looking to add some extra functionality and style to your kitchen? A kitchen island can be the perfect addition to your culinary space, providing you with additional storage, a workspace, and a central gathering spot for friends and family.

But what if you don’t want to spend a fortune on a pre-built island? Fear not! In this article, we’ll show you how to make a stunning kitchen island out of base cabinets, all while keeping your budget in check.

Materials You’ll Need to make a Kitchen Island Out of Base Cabinets

Before we dive into the step-by-step process, let’s gather the materials you’ll need for this project:

Base cabinets: Measure the space in your kitchen and choose base cabinets that will fit perfectly. You can find a variety of base cabinets at your local home improvement store or repurpose old ones for a unique touch.

Countertop: Select a countertop material that suits your style and needs. Popular options include granite, marble, butcher block, or laminate.

Screws and screwdriver: You’ll need screws to attach the cabinets together and a screwdriver to do the job.

Power drill: A power drill will make the assembly process quicker and easier.

Level: Ensure your island is level by using a spirit level.

Paint or stain (optional): If you want to add a pop of color or match your existing kitchen decor, consider painting or staining the cabinets before assembly.

Hardware: Don’t forget to select knobs or handles to complete the look of your island.

Steps to Build a Kitchen Island Out of Base Cabinets

Step 1: Preparing the Space

Measure the area in your kitchen where you want to place the island. Take into account the clearance needed for walking and opening cabinets and appliances. Once you have the measurements, mark the area on the floor using painter’s tape or chalk.

Step 2: Assembling the Base Cabinets

Begin by assembling the base cabinets according to the manufacturer’s instructions. If you’re using repurposed cabinets, make sure they’re clean and in good condition. Place the cabinets within the marked area to ensure they fit properly. Adjust as necessary.

Step 3: Securing the Cabinets Together

With the cabinets in place, it’s time to secure them together. Drill pilot holes through the sides and back of the cabinets, and then use screws to join them. Make sure to align the cabinets accurately and use a level to ensure they are perfectly horizontal.

Step 4: Attaching the Countertop

Once the cabinets are securely attached, it’s time to add the countertop. Place the countertop on the cabinets and adjust it until it aligns perfectly. Use screws from underneath to fasten the countertop to the cabinets. Be cautious not to overtighten the screws, as it could damage the countertop.

Step 5: Finishing Touches

Now that your kitchen island is taking shape, it’s time for the finishing touches. If you desire, paint or stain the cabinets to match your kitchen’s aesthetic. Install knobs or handles on the cabinet doors and drawers for a polished look. Take a step back and take in your own craftsmanship!

Step 6: Enhancements and Customizations (Optional)

While your kitchen island is fully functional at this point, you can take it a step further by adding some enhancements and customizations.

Here are some things to contemplate about:
Open shelving: Remove the doors of one or more cabinets to create open shelves for displaying your cookbooks, dishes, or decorative items.

Wine rack: Install a wine rack on one side of the island to store your favorite bottles conveniently.

Spice rack: Incorporate a built-in spice rack by attaching a small shelf or spice organizer to the side of one of the cabinets. This will keep your spices within reach while you’re cooking.

Pegboard: Attach a pegboard to the back or side of the island to hang utensils, pots, and pans. This not only adds functionality but also adds a touch of creativity to your kitchen.

Extra seating: If space allows, consider adding bar stools or chairs on one side of the island to create a cozy breakfast nook or a casual dining area.

Decorative accents: Personalize your kitchen island by adding decorative accents such as plants, artwork, or a decorative bowl filled with fresh fruits. These small touches can make your island feel more inviting and aesthetically pleasing.

Benefits of Making a Kitchen Island Out of Base Cabinets

Making a kitchen island out of base cabinets offers several advantages:

Cost-effective: Building your kitchen island using base cabinets is a cost-effective alternative to purchasing a pre-built island. It allows you to create a customized island while staying within your budget

Customizable: With a DIY kitchen island, you have the freedom to customize it according to your preferences. From choosing the cabinet style and color to selecting the countertop material, you can design an island that perfectly matches your kitchen decor.

Storage space: Base cabinets provide ample storage space for your kitchen essentials. You can store pots, pans, small appliances, and other items within easy reach, making your cooking experience more efficient.

Versatility: A kitchen island made from base cabinets can serve multiple purposes. It can be used as a prep station, a breakfast bar, or even a serving area during parties and gatherings. Its versatility makes it a valuable addition to any kitchen.

Tips for Success

Here are some additional tips to ensure your kitchen island project is a success:

Plan and measure: Before purchasing any materials or starting the project, carefully plan and measure the available space in your kitchen. Consider the dimensions of the base cabinets, the countertop, and the clearance needed for comfortable movement around the island.

Choose quality cabinets: If you’re purchasing new base cabinets, opt for quality materials that can withstand the demands of a kitchen environment. Look for cabinets made of sturdy wood or high-density fiberboard (HDF) that can endure regular use and support the weight of the countertop.

Secure cabinets properly: Take the time to properly secure the base cabinets together. Use sufficient screws and ensure they are tightened securely. This will provide stability and durability to your island.

Level the cabinets: Use a spirit level to ensure that the cabinets are level both horizontally and vertically. Uneven cabinets can cause issues with the countertop installation and the overall stability of the island.

Choose a suitable countertop: Consider the practicality and aesthetics of different countertop materials. Granite and marble offer a luxurious and durable surface, while butcher block provides a warm and rustic appeal. Laminate countertops are affordable and come in various colors and patterns.

Utilize professional help if needed: If you’re not confident in your DIY skills or if you encounter any challenges during the project, don’t hesitate to seek assistance from professionals. They can help with measurements, assembly, and installation to ensure a successful outcome.

Personalize your island: Use the opportunity to personalize your kitchen island according to your taste and needs. Consider adding additional features like built-in shelves, wine racks, or pegboards to enhance functionality and reflect your unique style.

Maintain proper ventilation: If your kitchen island will house appliances such as a cooktop or oven, ensure there is proper ventilation in place to dissipate heat and prevent any safety hazards.

Regular maintenance: Once your kitchen island is complete, remember to maintain it regularly. Clean the cabinets and countertop according to the manufacturer’s instructions and address any repairs or issues promptly to extend its lifespan.

By following these tips and taking your time with the project, you’ll be able to create a remarkable kitchen island out of base cabinets that not only meet your practical needs but also add value and charm to your kitchen.


Creating a kitchen island out of base cabinets is a rewarding project that allows you to enhance your kitchen’s functionality and aesthetics.

By following the steps outlined in this guide and unleashing your creativity, you can build a stunning island that will become the centerpiece of your culinary space.

Remember to measure carefully, secure the cabinets properly, and consider adding your own personal touches to make it truly unique.

So why wait? Roll up your sleeves, gather your materials, and embark on this exciting DIY adventure to transform your kitchen into a more functional and beautiful space.

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