As urban living spaces get smaller, kitchens are inevitably getting downsized as well. But they are still expected to serve all same functions. You have to have a space to prepare your ingredients, cook your meals, and wash the dishes. In addition to a refrigerator, you need a space to keep your groceries, utensils, and all the pots, pans, and appliances you have. While there is little you can do to make it roomier than it actually is, the good thing is that there are ways to make your small kitchen look and feel bigger.
Here are tips to make a small kitchen seem bigger:
- Think light and white
Nothing illuminates and maximizes space like natural light. Let in as much natural light into your kitchen as you can by using minimalist window treatment designs. Then, enhance this by choosing a low-contrast, light color scheme for your walls, cabinets, and counters. Boost the brightness further by using shiny appliances and surfaces which reflect available light, and choose furnishings with a lightweight design such as those from Köögimööbel (en. Kitchen Furniture). Make sure you use the same color shade to avoid visual blocks.
- Streamline storage
Planning your storage well is essential for small kitchens. If you have wooden cabinets, you can choose to replace the solid doors with glass, or remove them altogether. This enlarges your space because you can see through to the walls, instead of the much-nearer cabinet doors. You can also opt for recessed or open shelves which have an airier look and feel than traditional cupboards.
A small kitchen is limited in horizontal space but not in the vertical space. You can easily utilize the vertical space by hanging your utensils and other equipment on the walls. This arrangement will leave your horizontal space decongested, leaving your kitchen spacious. The empty spaces between the cabinets and appliances can be utilized by fixing a pull-out pantry. Putting items that you rarely use such as baskets on the unutilized space above the cabinets will free up more space.
- Kill clutter
With a small space, you cannot afford to have clutter on your counters. Invest in a system that will allow you to readily access things that you often need and put them away afterwards easily. Consider this too for your frequently-used small appliances like toasters and coffee makers, so they will not take up space on your counter when not in use.
Utilize this idea when choosing furniture for your small kitchen. For instance, small stools that can fit under the table after use are ideal for saving more space. For your kitchen island, you can also invest in a roller cart that you can easily wheel out of the way to create more space.
- Create optical illusions
The magic of making your small kitchen appear more spacious relies on visual illusions. Using a mirror for your backsplash will create a sense of a significantly expanded space. Flooring that has lines running across it will makes your kitchen seem wider in the same way that horizontal stripes on clothing can make the body appear broader. Oversized floor patterns with diagonal lines that traverse the floor also have a similar effect. Your floor will also appear longer with a runner rug. Consider using a straight line design for the kitchen cabinets. This arrangement will make your kitchen appear bigger and less bulky.
For an illusion of vertical space, include elements that draw the eye upward such as cabinet moldings or pretty decorations. Just make sure these blend into your color scheme.
- Blend into another space
Maximize space by “borrowing” the areas adjacent to your kitchen. Clear anything that divides your kitchen from the adjoining area. If you are so inclined, you can even look into knocking down a wall to expand your space.
- Redirect attention
Use a large pattern for your windows coverings or a large piece of art to achieve a more sophisticated feel. This will redirect the eye to perceive a larger kitchen space.
With these tips in mind, you can have fun planning and surveying your options on how to transform your small kitchen. You can go DIY it, or call the pros!