These past few days, I have been doing a lot of crawling on the web to pick up fresh ideas for our small (8X13 square feet) kitchen. Down sizing seems to the order of the day, but I learned that you don’t have to sacrifice style. In fact these small kitchens I found are beautiful! Here are a top to bottom strategies to make the most of the small space.
- Have lots of light - Install window, skylights, compact lights under the cabinets and over the sink.
- Cabinets - When using wood, choose those with a finer grain and keep the cabinet doors plain. Choose sleek simple handles or omit them altogether. Make the overhead cabinet and pantry extend all the way to the ceiling to visually extend the height of the room. Favor shiny surfaces to reflect light. You don’t have to be stuck with light colored cabinets. Dark cabinets can look cozy in small kitchens too! Just balance the darkness with light colored and reflective backsplash, floors and countertops. Here are a few examples
- Edit your kitchen gadgets - Consider keeping only the things you frequently use for food preparation in the kitchen. Recently the small oven toaster we got for our wedding has gone kaput. So we began grilling our sandwiches in our big cast iron skillet. We discovered that the flavor is much better. We figured that we did not need the toaster anyway. I got rid of it so I now have more space on my counter top. In this renovating project the seldom used double oven that occupies to much space was removed to create space for a dining area.
- Relocate - If you don’t want to get rid of things in the cabinets then consider storing seldom used items in other rooms. Dinnerware and cutlery may be kept in a cabinet in the dining room.
- Use the space in between shelves and the space between the counter top and overhead cabinets to hang your frequently used kitchen utensils
- Create an open floor plan - Breakdown walls so you can borrow space from other parts of the house
- Backsplash - Use smaller tiles with a glossy finish. No big patterns please.
- Install a big sink - Even small kitchen needs a big sink. It makes washing big pots and pans easier and it can hide dirty plates you have yet to tackle.
- Island - Consider a movable island, it can be easily moved out of the way or double as a serving cart when entertaining.
- Floors - Install planks or tiles at an angle. The diagonal lines visually ‘push’ back the walls.
I hope these ideas would help make food preparation in a small space more enjoyable. Do you have more ideas?
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