Small Kitchen Design Ideas That Will Make You Forget About Their Size

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If your home is anything like ours, your kitchen is probably about the same size as a snug bathroom. It's a miracle if you're able to make a meal that requires any more work than a turkey sandwich. And yet, you manage to do it every day. But just because your kitchen is spatially challenged, that doesn't mean it has to feel that way. From bright white paint to clever storage solutions, there are so many nifty tips and tricks that can seemingly open up your space.

1. Utilize open shelving.

Open shelving is a must in a small kitchen, as storage is a limited commodity. Not only will this provide lots of extra storage, and free up valuable counter space, but it also just looks really pretty. So time to grab your measuring tape and hang some shelves.

2. Keep it white and bright.

Caution: All-white kitchens may appear larger than they really are. Give your cozy kitchen a chic facelift with a fresh coat of white paint. This new look will brighten up your space and act as a subtle backdrop for snazzy decorative accents like copper pendant lights.

3. Blend cabinets and appliances.

The kitchen is undoubtedly the most appliance-heavy room in the house. By creating a design that blends appliances with cabinets, like this little all-white number, smaller kitchens won't feel cluttered.

4. Keep countertops free and clear.

When people complain about their small kitchen, they are usually complaining about the lack of counter space. By keeping those countertops clean and clear — not including every day necessities like your Nespresso machine — your kitchen will seem less cluttered and more importantly you'll have plenty of room for chopping and stirring.

5. Combine the dining area with the kitchen.

Create the illusion of extra space by merging two rooms into one. Not only will it make your kitchen look larger, but it also gives your dinner guests a nice view of your culinary prowess.

6. Opt for smaller appliances.

We've all dreamt about owning a spacious Sub-Zero refrigerator, but in reality most of us are constrained by budget or space. Until that day arrives, scale back and opt for smaller appliances to give your tiny space a little extra breathing room.

7. Consider a folding countertop.

Cooking in a small kitchen is definitely a challenge. So make your life a little bit easier by installing a fold-down countertop. This will give you the luxury of a little extra counter space, and when you need more room to maneuver you can just release the latch and unfold it.

8. Bring in lots of natural light.

It's no secret that natural light can open up a space. So welcome all of the sunlight you can, even if that means a small renovation project in order to carve out a kitchen window. And bonus: You will be saving a few bucks as well as the environment by using natural light instead.

9. Find a mobile kitchen island with storage.

A kitchen island can function as a serving area, surface area for cooking, and an option for more storage. And by freeing up shelving and counter space, your kitchen will appear a little bit larger.

10. Organization is key.

There's no feeling more satisfying in the kitchen than to being able to locate the ice cream scoop in a jiffy. By using storage solutions like this base pantry pull out from Home Depot, to organize utensils and other tools, you can save a ton of space, not to mention you'll always be prepared to scoop that cookie dough deliciousness at a moment's notice.

11. Get creative with storage.

Wine racks have a tendency to take up considerable counter space. But thankfully, there are creative wine storage solutions like this wine pole that allow you to free up your counter space without having to toss the vino.

12. Store things in high places.

When there's nowhere else to store your odds and ends, look up. Unused space above cabinets or above an island can come in handy in a small kitchen.

After interning at Dwell magazine in San Francisco, Kate began writing about arts, design and culture for other national publications. She is based in Los Angeles and San Francisco.

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