I have never encountered as many small kitchens as I did when I was in college. The houses with the most students crammed into them always had the smallest kitchens, and with everyone bringing a mix and match collection of kitchen items, it didn’t take long
for the kitchen to get crowded. However, a small kitchen doesn’t need to look cramped. Here are some simple tips to making the most of a small kitchen:
Choose Light Colours
Dark paint can make a small kitchen look even more cramped. Try using a very light paint on the majority of the walls, like white or a light yellow, and accent the neutral paint with splashes of bright colour. For example, you can make your area unique by painting the area above the stove or the space between shelves a bright red or blue. Make sure your cupboards are also light in colour. If they are currently dark or a stained wood, they can be painted over with a neutral colour to open up the space.
Lastly, when choosing appliances, always go for the lighter colour. If you have the option to buy a black coffee machine or a stainless steel one – go for the stainless steel. Lighter paint and appliances will open up the space and make the kitchen as a whole look bigger.
Increase your Lighting
Similar to dark paint, dark spaces always look smaller. One of the simplest ways to make your kitchen look more spacious is by increasing the amount of lighting. Add overhead lighting with the Zuo Intergalactic Ceiling Lamp or the Zuo Asteroids Modern Ceiling Lamp in red to add a splash of accent colour to the room.
Clear off the Counter
A crowded countertop can make a small kitchen look cramped and cluttered. There are some appliances you most likely use every day, like a toaster or a coffee pot, but there are some that you don’t use as often, like a crockpot. It’s important to store away the appliances you rarely use to clear up the space on your counter. It will leave your kitchen looking more spacious.
In small kitchens, it’s important to use all the available height and space in the room. Place a Nexera Kitchen Cart beside your counter for extra storage. Use the height of your kitchen effectively by securing the Nexera Traffic 2-Piece Wall Unit or Wall Cubes above the fridge or stove for extra storage. Also maximize your vertical space by hanging pots and pans from the ceiling on a rack or a series of hooks.
Add an Island
Normally small kitchens are a three sided nook. This leaves an entire side to the space that is untouched and unused. Fill this space with an island. By putting a structure in this space you are increasing your storage and counter space and you are also enclosing the kitchen to separate it from other living spaces. Try the Monarch Metal Bar Table. It has a delicate design but also have three shelves for extra storage.
Another common mistake in small kitchens is to squeeze in a kitchen table when there clearly isn’t room. Instead, double your island as a breakfast table by adding barstools. I love the CorLiving Tapered Full Back Adjustable Bar Stools. They are compact and can be adjusted to the height of any countertop and the bright red chairs add a great spash of colour to any neutral kitchen.
If there’s only two of you living in a home, is there really a need for a 10 cup capacity coffee machine? Or a four slice toaster? When you are moving into a house or apartment with a small kitchen, take stock of the appliances you have.
First of all, do you use it? If you do, is it too big for your needs? If so, get rid of it! Invest in appliances that suit your lifestyle and your living space. For your morning coffee, try the Nespresso VertuoLIne Coffee System with Aerocinno Plus. This single serve coffee maker brews high-quality coffee and espresso and will take up very little space on the counter.
For simple one or two-person toasting and baking, try the Sunbeam 4-Slice Toaster Oven.
And when you’re only cooking for one or two, the Breville Panini Grill will be your best friend. It’s small and compact enough to store in a cramped cupboard, but is versatile enough to work as an indoor grill or hot sandwich maker.
Making a small kitchen work can be tricky. Choose light paint colours and white or silver appliances and make sure you have adequate lighting fixtures. In addition, de-clutter your countertop and ensure that you choose the most compact, useful appliances available. Lastly, increase your storage space by adding an island and doubling up on your shelving and/or kitchen carts. By using these simple steps, you will give the illusion that your tiny kitchen is open and spacious!
Want to see more small appliances for small kitchens?
and here are some other articles on “living small” you might like:
5 Tricks to make the most of a small bedroom
Portable appliance solutions
Space saving home office