6 Ways to Increase the Efficiency of a Small Kitchen

eHow Home Blog

Small kitchen ideas

Design trends come and go, but one thing remains certain: The kitchen is one of the most used rooms of the house. In fact, it’s often considered the heart of the home, but just because the kitchen is important doesn’t mean that it’s going to be big. Depending on the age of your house or the city you live in, you may have to deal with an unreasonably small space.

So, you have a small kitchen — where does all of your stuff go?

small kitchen ideas

1. Think outside the box when it comes to your kitchen cabinets.

Fill your (closed) cabinets to max capacity, but be sure to use the door space, too! The inside of cabinet doors are often overlooked. Add a magnet board and attach small items or a message board to keep private notes out of sight. Use hooks to hold your measuring cups, spoons and other kitchen utensils. Over-the-door bins are a great option for bottom cabinets, especially under the sink. If you are able to, consider using open shelves for the upper cabinets. Galley kitchens, specifically, do well with open shelving. It not only creates visual interest, but it also gives the illusion of a larger room.

2. Remember that countertops are the most valuable piece of real estate in a kitchen.

Small kitchens can be cute, cozy, organized and styled, but ultimately they need to be efficient enough to cook in. With regard to counter space, not every small kitchen is created equally. There are small kitchens with surprisingly ample counter space, yet other kitchens have only one small area to prep food. Since countertop space is so valuable, think wisely about how you use it. Get rid of the knife block and opt for a magnet strip that you can add to your backsplash or wall. Find an oversized or over-the-sink cutting board to instantly add some usable space. If you have room, a small table can serve as another work area.

small kitchen

3. Use your walls and even the ceiling, too.

There are two things that can help you maximize your wall space. 1) Add a shelf near the ceiling. It won’t interfere with people moving around the kitchen, yet it can serve as a great place to display special pieces or store items that aren’t used as often. 2) Add a pegboard à la Julia Child. You can style it with pans, colanders, utensils and other various kitchen essentials for quick and easy access.

Finally, there’s the ceiling, too. Add a pot holder for even more storage.

4. Don’t forget about the refrigerator.

When space is limited, the refrigerator can be an opportunity to squeeze some more storage out of an already small space. If the top is accessible, you can use it for vases, recipe books, food or maybe even a cookie jar. The side of the fridge is a great place to display your spices, by putting them in magnetic jars. For more storage, attach magnets to bins and attach them to the side of the fridge. It is possible to keep the exterior of your refrigerator organized while optimizing the surface.

small kitchen

5. Take advantage of storage solutions.

Storage options nowadays are amazing. If your kitchen has room for a rolling cart, then that can be an easy solution for not only extra counter space, but extra storage space as well. Shelf organizers can help you stack things more efficiently inside of your cabinets and help utilize unused space. Hooks, rails, lazy Susans, and baskets can also aid in keeping you organized.

6. Show off your personality!

Decorate it, style it and definitely have fun with it! Just as you display your personality throughout the rest of your home, the kitchen is a great area to express a bit of you, too. One easy way to make your kitchen appear bigger is by keeping it white and bright. This just happens to be a great backdrop to show off your personality too!

Think of adding things that will do double duty by showcasing your personality and decorating the space, like potted kitchen herbs. They will add color and a wonderful fragrance to the room. Your kitchen accessories will add color in the room, too. Bring more light in by including a lamp. If you don’t have counter space for that, there are many options for sconces to fit any personality. Kitchens are also a great place to display personal art, such as a framed family recipe.

Photo Credits: Simply Grove, Decor8, Design Sponge, Apartment Therapy

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