If you’re stuck with a small kitchen space, you’re probably always looking for ways to maximize its minimal layout. Unfortunately, this can be tricky and may require several attempts before finding the best setup for your household’s needs.
If you’re worrying that there are only so many options to achieve a more ergonomic and efficient kitchen area, you might be surprised. Check out this quick guide full of helpful ideas to help this room reach its full potential.
Create Depth With Open Shelving
Your cabinetry is probably your most prized possession in a tiny kitchen, but it can also have a shrinking effect on the feel of the space. Instead of feeling like your walls are closing in on you during dinner prep, keep solid-faced cabinetry on the lower half of your walls. On the top half, replace with open kitchen shelving or with glass fronts. This helps add depth in tight spaces.
What size or style will work in your current layout? These custom kitchen cabinets in Hershey, PA, will get you motivated.
Play With Light
If your home has a double galley kitchen that saves space but seems dark and inefficient, finds ways to increase how much natural light gets into the room. For example, broaden the galley’s window space. This allows illumination to come through into this narrow layout. If there isn’t a window area, consider installing one if architecturally possible. Even a wall opening into an adjoining room can help break the shadowy atmosphere of this kitchen style.
Add Surface Space With A Portable Island
One of the quickest ways to increase functionality and surface area in a kitchen is with an island. But, if you’re working with limited space, one of these units quickly restricts mobility. So, instead of sacrificing the walking room, consider using a freestanding island or narrow table that can easily be moved when not in use. This adds the extra prep space needed when cooking and has the flexibility of being stored. It will also keep your kitchen feeling more welcoming and relaxed instead of chaotic because of constantly maneuvering around the island.
Make Use Of Seemingly Useless Space
Do you have a small kitchen with corners or other architectural features that wastes space? Instead of trying to replace these areas, work with what you’ve got!
For example, if this area has a window with a sill that makes it impossible to extend your countertop wall-to-wall, simply install a secondary top that’s slightly lower. This is a better option than taking up more space with a rack or island that sticks out further into the room. Likewise, if you have upper cabinets with crown molding, consider removing the molding so you have access to the tops for storing lightweight items and decor.
Get Inspired By The Letter U
Do you need more cabinet and countertop space? Consider creating a u-shaped layout for your kitchen so you can make up for lost corner space by installing a cupboard or open shelving on the end wall. This is a popular option for windowless galley designs and will take advantage of every inch this space has to offer.
If you can get these cabinets as high as reasonably possible without being awkward to reach, you can also increase storage space on your counters.
Install A Slim-Style Kitchen Island
As mentioned earlier, adding an island to your layout may not be feasible due to the obstacle it creates to the natural flow of traffic in your kitchen. However, if you need more space to store away a portable version, check out the different options available for narrower models.
When installing this space-creating unit, try to ensure it’s as deep as a normal cabinet with adequate built-in storage. Plus, make sure you can easily maneuver around it in your kitchen before committing to this addition.
Add A Bar Area
If your home is so compact you don’t have room for a dining area; it’s possible to add a bar area to create a small spot for casual meals and create additional counter space for meal prep. There are several ways to go about adding this helpful feature.
First, if you have a windowed wall with a high sill, consider installing a wall-mounted foldaway bar that can be easily stored when not in use. You could also extend your kitchen by putting a breakfast bar just on the other side of this room and have it go a few feet into your space instead. You’ll appreciate how less intrusive this type of feature is to the overall feel of your cooking area.
Slide It All Away With Retractable Doors
If you live in a loft or studio-style space with a single-room open floorplan, you find the best way to maximize your kitchen and living areas is through the use of sliding doors. These are affordable option that helps increase your floor plan by dividing these rooms when not in use.
Large sliding doors are quite affordable, come in a host of styles, and even offer multipurpose surfaces for hanging items, installing lightweight shelves, and more. Imagine how convenient and space-saving retractable doors can be while also adding extra layers of decor to your space.
If you’re in the mood to completely renovate, you could create a pocketed area to line up your appliances, countertop, foldaway table, and sink areas. Then, add these doors to create a closet effect that compliments and seamlessly hides it away behind a statement-featured wall design. Other camouflaging features work as well, including bi-fold doors or a heavy-duty room curtain. The options are endless, and you’ll love the results.
Slim Down Your Appliance Profiles
One of the most troublesome aspects of a compact kitchen area is that your appliances are always deeper than your cabinetry, creating an uneven parameter (and plenty of places to stub your toes). Instead, consider investing in items that offer multiple uses in tiny cook spaces, like a combi-steam oven or a convection microwave.
You can also purchase compact versions of standard appliances that have a more shallow profile. This is a popular option if purchasing more expensive combination equipment is outside your budget. For example, slim dishwashers are a great option since they’re only about 18″ wide, which means you could install a narrow cabinet in the gap it creates.
Just remember that your primary appliances should be prioritized for a spot in your kitchen first. Additional comfort options, like a wine fridge, may do better in the corner of your dining room instead.
Get The Most Out of Your Kitchen Layout
One of the limitations of any kitchen, large or small, is the architectural features that can’t be changed. So if you’re stuck with a corner, invest in storage accents like a lazy susan or toe-kick drawers under your base cabinets.
Also, keep your options open to what currently exists in your kitchen. For example, custom cabinetry may be the perfect solution that can add more functionality than store-bought products.
Drawers are considered superior to cupboards in terms of full access to all contents. Also, think about how cabinets and appliances open. A dishwasher door that clashes with a fridge door opposite will endlessly annoy.