Free Up Valuable Kitchen Counter Space With This Easy Tension Rod DIY

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Storage space can be at a premium in the kitchen, where there never seems enough to keep things completely stashed and out of the way. Organization systems and floating shelves can be expensive if you want to find an easy way to use extra spaces like that often found just below the cabinets. This is especially true in small kitchens or rental spaces, where adding storage solutions for kitchen essentials is a bit more challenging but perhaps even more necessary. Thankfully, a great and inexpensive way to create a rental-friendly, budget-conscious additional shelf exists. Placing Dollar Tree trays on two parallel tension rods allows you to create additional space below the cabinet without complicated assembly or construction.

Begin by placing two tension rods underneath the cabinets at a height that works with what you'd like to put on the shelve. This can be a narrower clearance for small items like spices or greater clearance for items like plants or dishware. Use double-sided tape on each end to keep the tension rod from moving around too much or shifting. Place the trays, like these pretty gold charger trays or wooden serving trays, on the level surface created by the parallel rods, using additional double-sided tape where the tray meets the rod to prevent shifting.

Customizing your tension rod shelf

You can modify your tension rod shelf to fit your needs by filling the expanse with trays for a full shelf or mixing and matching trays with other useful elements. Options include S-hooks for utensils, mugs, or potholders and hanging wire baskets for stashing small items, like teabags, coffee filters, cooking tools, etc., to create a solution completely customized to your storage requirements. You can also hang reusable mesh bags full of produce from hooks underneath to keep counters clutter-free.

The capacity of the shelf will vary according to the max weight of your tension rods, which range from 5 pounds like this one from Target to stronger rods like this one from Amazon that will hold up to 22 pounds. With heavier rods, you can always swap out the Dollar Tree trays for stylish wood cutting boards or a length of wood to create a rustic-looking or painted shelf. You can create two shallower additional storage levels if you have a lot of vertical space between the cabinets and the counters.