Let’s face it: Not everyone is blessed with the kitchen space of a cooking TV show. In fact, there are plenty of kitchens that make do with much less space without giving up an iota of style panache. Just because your quarters are cramped doesn’t mean you can’t design a functional, fabulous kitchen that complements your home and your cooking style. With a few smart design tips, you can turn what seems like a cramped kitchen into an oasis for your family to gather, prep meals and make memories.
Add Storage and Be a Minimalist
While things left on the counter can offer easier access to your cooking tools and ingredients, cluttered countertops can make a kitchen look much smaller than it already is. By adding storage wherever you can – think drawers in your island or popping a few extra shelves into existing cabinets – you can get rid of the clutter on your counters for a cleaner, more streamlined look. While the added storage means a more organized kitchen, the clean, minimalist counters lets your kitchen design aesthetic really shine through.
Create Multipurpose Surfaces
If you’re already pressed for space in your kitchen, you might have to forgo some of the luxuries bigger kitchens offer, like an eat-in area or huge prep spaces; this is where creating multi-purpose spaces really comes in handy. By installing an island with a cutting board and eating area, you only need one place to prep food and serve it up to your family, bar-style. Look for ways that your existing surfaces in your kitchen can function in more than just one capacity. Whether it’s a table that functions as a sideboard or a rolling island that also holds baking supplies, making sure that your kitchen surfaces are really pulling their weight in your home means you can keep your kitchen sleek and simple.
Natural Light and Colors
It’s common knowledge that darker colors can make a room look smaller. That is especially true when dealing with small kitchens that also have elements like cabinetry, backsplashes and appliances. Therefore, it’s best to choose a light and bright color that helps your kitchen look bigger, like a pale gray or off white. Then, focus on bringing natural light into your kitchen to reflect those paler colors – perhaps you have heavy drapes on the kitchen window that you can remove. Opting for light quartz countertops can also help reflect some of that light for a brighter kitchen overall.
Sure, a huge fridge would be great when you really have a case of the munchies, but do you really need full-sized appliances? Most appliances can be purchased in compact sizes, which mean they take up less room in a tiny kitchen. A half-size range may offer fewer cubic inches of cooking area, which might be perfect for someone living alone or a couple in their first home. See what options are available for appliances and you may be able to find smaller sizes that really complement your little kitchen. Without the oversized appliances, what may have seemed like a small kitchen could be positively roomy.
Even if the kitchen of your dreams is massive in scale, you have to work with what you already have. By taking the time to arrange your kitchen around size, light and functionality, you might be able to score your dream kitchen – just on a smaller scale. With an eye for multiuse surfaces and décor that maximizes the space you already have, even a small kitchen can give your home the ambiance and functionality that you want.
Robin’s award winning designs have been recognized by several National and Regional design contests.