Our Custom Gliding Ladder in the Kitchen

March 10, 2022

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We’re rolling out the big guns today and sharing the detail on the wood ladder in the kitchen! As a child I had dreams of having a gliding ladder ever since watching Beauty and the Beast (cliche and I own that). However, I don’t think there is anything more charming than a rolling ladder in the kitchen.

We worked closely with Stoffer Cabinetry to get just the right slope. We wanted it to hug the counters without hitting them, but avoid sticking out too far. I was honestly worried it would feel like we had to walk around this ladder but there’s a 32″ distance between the ladder and the island, making it far from “in the way.” It’s the perfect tilt!

Everything about this ladder is custom. We ordered it through Hafele who make a lot of custom pieces, including the most stunning library ladders and we were able to design the ladder of our dreams for our dream kitchen. Everything from the wood tones, to all the brass detailing, and the railing. They even have the option to have a ladder with an angle at the counter, or a ladder that goes straight down. It’s also worth noting the grippy material on the ladder rungs as a slipping precaution! Safety first!

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Now that we’ve lived with this one for a bit, I wish we had ladders all over our kitchen! As stunning as this is, it’s also just super practical. We can’t reach the cabinets above the bookcase where we’re keeping things like waffle makers, drink dispensers, our air fryer–things we use on occasion rather than every day! The ladder gives us quick access and if I’m being truthful… it’s just so fun to use!

I like to think of this ladder as a stand-alone design element in the kitchen. The charm and lived-in character it adds is exactly what I was going for. We have been getting questions like, “how do you keep your kids off of this?” The honest answer? We don’t. This is their home too, and they can make believe Belle singing on the ladder all day for all I care. Someday they’re going to have memories of pretending to climb Rapunzel’s tower and that makes me teary-eyed. It’s also sturdy, substantial, and safe so I’m just not too concerned!

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What do you think?

  1. Jackie says:

    What color wood and hardware finish did you choose? I’m trying to match wood, but I can’t decide what I need to match my floor and other wood pieces in the room….yours looks walnut? I’m stuck between birch or walnut. 🥴

    • Chris Loves Julia says:

      We used unlacquered brass for the hardware, and I think we went with walnut for the wood finish so it would be a contrast to our white oak floors.

  2. Jesse Miller says:

    Hey, thank you for sharing this! I’m wanting to install something like this for my wife. I’m 6ft 1inches tall and she is 5ft tall lol. We are currently renovating our kitchen and was thinking of how to make it more shorter person friendly since currently I have to get everything for her out of the upper cabinets. I’m thinking about doing a gliding step stool though instead of a ladder (can’t find anywhere that any has been made). Can I ask a couple questions:

    1. How much did your custom ladder and rail cost? It’s absolutely beautiful and may contact the same people you mentioned.

    2. Can it go around a bend to reach different sides of the kitchen or is it setup for only one side?

    • Suz says:

      The ladder was invoiced with the full kitchen project so it’s not broken out into its individual price. There are a lot of factors that go into the price so it’s best to just contact the supplier and they can give you the options, let you choose, then provide a price.
      The ladder just goes on one side, but we’ve seen some that have curves. That would also be a good request for the supplier!

  3. Allie says:

    How much space do you have between the island and cabinet with the ladder? I have been told I likely do not have enough room, but I think we have 38-42in between ours. Seems like it would be very convenient to not have to get a step stool out every single time!

  4. Bev says:

    Do you remember the color of the paint on your cabinets?

  5. Geen says:

    Yes, those memories are priceless! We had a laundry shoot from the upstairs bath to the laundry off the kitchen- many Rescue Heroes and other toys were played with along with hangers hooked together and rubberbands cut and tied, or shoelaces- excellent brain builders!

  6. jen says:

    So beautiful! What is your cabinet paint color?

  7. Jessica says:

    I love how this ladder turned out! The rail is striking and I even love the little petal details around the wheel covers! Beautiful. Also, I need to know. What jeans are you wearing here? They don’t look like any of the ones on your favorite list.

  8. Linda says:

    So beautiful. Does hafele provide hardware as well like the rail it glides on?

  9. Bailey says:

    Lovely!! What’s in the cabinet with the grate on it?

  10. Rebecca says:

    So beautiful and definitely a memory maker! Have you seen the lucite stool on Alice Lane home? Tempted to get one for our out of reach kitchen spots and for our closet.

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