Secrets for Small Kitchen Expansion

From on April 30, 2008 in Kitchen Remodel

Small Kitchen

Many homeowners, especially families, deal with the daily bumps and bruises of life in and about a small kitchen. The sink always seems to be full, the counters are impossibly cluttered, and appliances stick out like lumbering beasts. Eventually such conditions would drive anyone batty, but don’t let it get that far. This is where you prepare your meals and nearly every morning starts in the kitchen over a pot of coffee. Your kitchen – for better or worse – can really set the tone for the day. Your kitchen should be one of your favorite places to be.

Having a small kitchen is nothing to panic about or resign yourself to. There are plenty of valuable hints for designing a small kitchen to look, feel, and function bigger than it really is.

Counter space may be the largest and most frustrating problem with small kitchens. Excessive clutter can make your kitchen feel like a cage. When you remodel, design you counters to be as deep as possible and cover as much of the space not used for appliances with counters. The sacrifice of a few square feet of floor space will free up an amazing amount of usable counter space.

Storage is another big issue in small kitchens. A lack of storage leads to cluttered countertops and the inherent frustration that comes with it. Make storage a top priority as you prepare to redesign your kitchen. Try to squeeze in a lot of cabinets if you can, and put them on the upper portion of the walls where they are out of the way and utilizing otherwise unusable space.

If you have enough room, install a small island with drawers or shelves that will be easily accessible from anywhere in the kitchen. Although you can do this anywhere in the kitchen, over an island is a great place to put a rack for hanging pots and pans. You can get those bulky things out of drawers, off countertops, and add a touch of style to your kitchen.

If you can fit a floor-to-ceiling pantry in your kitchen, then do it. A walk-in pantry is even better, providing an amazing amount of storage for not just food but a wide assortment of things you would rather not have hanging around on countertops. If you can’t manage the walk-in pantry, consider roll-out shelving, Lazy Susans, etc. You may also consider converting a closet outside the kitchen into a pantry for seldom used items such as cutlery or larger pots and pans.

Built-in appliances are also a great idea for small kitchens. Built-in ovens, microwaves, and even storage for smaller appliances do a lot to free up precious counter space. There are also space-saving appliances on the market these days, including shallow refrigerators and microwaves that can hang underneath cabinets.

While downsizing appliances and clutter are great ideas, downsizing your sink is a big mistake. Keep your sink as large as you can. Larger sinks are more practical and the bigger they are the slower they fill up with dishes.

And finally, flooring and lighting are not to be overlooked when working with a small kitchen. Floors with a diagonal tile design give a sense of space. Under cabinet or under counter lighting is also a great way to not only expand the feel of the kitchen in terms of space, but also make the kitchen more inviting and warm – just the kind of place you want to be.

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