Knife Magnet

My wife and I have managed to live in places over the years that have few, if any, drawers. We’ve had a knife magnet since we lived in DC, and it’s always been very useful. It keeps our cutlery uncluttered and out of the way. After we remodeled the kitchen, we couldn’t decide what to put above the range. Neither of us wanted to put up anything too decorative that would date the room, and we had to consider that whatever was there would receive a steam bath whenever we boiled noodles.

Knife Magnet 001

The space between the upper cabinets is about 30 inches. Since our knife magnet is only 18 inches long, we ordered another 12 inch magnet from Magnagrip and got to work.

The wood color doesn’t match anything in our kitchen, so I sanded it down and applied some stain:

Knife Magnet 002

I used a mixture of Red Mahogany, Red Sedona and Jacobean to get the right tint to match our cabinets, but the wood just wouldn’t absorb the darker stain. After a while, I decided I could live with the color, even though it’s a lighter hue than what I was going for. I held my four foot level beneath the upper cabinets, set the knife magnets on it, and then marked the screw holes. We have plaster board in this old house, so I had to insert plastic anchors. You’d be amazed at how much force it takes to get the butcher knife off the magnet. If it’s not attached to the wall properly, you’ll accidentally pull it out.

Here’s the result:

Knife Magnet 003

We think it looks pretty good. Only time will tell if the knives hold up well to the steam and splatters.

Knife Magnet
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5 thoughts on “Knife Magnet

  • October 23, 2009 at 3:39 pm
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    i love using magnetic bars to store my kitchen knives. got mine from IKEA. i do find the placement of your knives curious. how are they holding up to the steam, oil and food splatters? do you find that you need to clean your knives more often?

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  • October 26, 2009 at 8:31 am
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    We have two brands of knives on the magnet — J.A. Henckels and Wolfgang Puck. We got the Puck knives as a Christmas gift. I was initially impressed with them, as they looked and felt as good as the Henckels. But after months over the stove, the Puck knives are starting to get rust spots and the black handles have faded to gray. Plus, the steel doesn’t keep an edge nearly as good as the more expensive Henckels knives. On the other hand, the Henckels have held up fine. They sometimes get some little spots on the steel, but it comes off after we wash them. I guess you really do get what you pay for.

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  • January 24, 2010 at 3:54 pm
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    Yeah, the Henckel Zwilling knives are definitely good ones! A good knife i easy to get sharp and will stay that way for longer. You’ll know one when you’ve owned one ;-)
    I can also highly recommend Victorinox (yep, it’s the swiss pocket knive people). Excellent steel and very nice wooden handles. They also do plastic handle versions. I guess the blades are the same – but the plastic is cheap looking, so I’ve never tried them.
    Likewise Global seems to have gotten the steel right – however the handles are not to my liking… To small – and I suspect design over function ;-)

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  • June 6, 2012 at 3:00 pm
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    So, have you found that you like the location above the stove? I was thinking of doing the same thing. Nice remodel!

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  • June 6, 2012 at 3:09 pm
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    Michelle, I love this arrangement. The knives have suffered no damage as far as I can tell (I only use Henkel knives these days). They’re effectively organized, little kids can’t reach them, and they don’t monopolize a kitchen drawer.

    Every now and then, they’ll get tiny oil splatters on them if I’ve been pan frying a lot, but it’s really not a big problem. Every month or so, they need to be cleaned anyway. So I just fill one of the sink wells with hot soapy water and let them soak for a while.

    You can see the final remodel pics here and here. Sometimes I forget how hard we worked on all of this. Best of luck with your project!

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