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12 Tips to Make Your Small Kitchen Look and Feel Bigger

Don’t have a lot of room to play with in your small kitchen? Here are some design tips and tricks to make your small cooking space look and feel much bigger.

Tip 1: Hide the extra countertop space

One of the things small kitchens struggle with? The lack of countertop space. Rather than get in a kitchen island to make up for it, which would cramp out whatever space you do have, go with a pull-out countertop space that you can stow away inside your cabinets once you are done with it.

Design: Free Space Intent

Tip 2: Double up your kitchen counter as an island

Kitchen islands can be really useful, but they take up a lot of space. For those of you who are planning to have one, consider doubling up part of your kitchen counter as an island. Install castors below and it becomes flexible enough to wheel around your kitchen to meet all your needs.

Design: Kejico

Tip 3: Include mirrors somewhere

A top (and obvious) trick for making a small space seem larger? Mirrors. Not only do they give you the illusion of a bigger kitchen, the reflective surfaces also help to bounce light around your space. Consider mirrored cabinets or a mirrored backsplash for a chic, modern look.

Design: MMJ Design Loft

Tip 4: Have the countertop and backsplash in one material

Blending the backsplash and countertops together using just a single material can create a more cohesive and seamless look. It reduces the busyness and allows the eye to sweep across the room in single motion with fewer visual breaks. The added bonus? You will need just one cleaning tool and solution for both the backsplash and countertops.


Design: Starry Homestead

Tip 5: Ditch the top cabinets and go with open shelves

Instead of top cabinets which can add visual bulk to your kitchen, open shelves lend a sense of lightness and airiness and can help to bump up the sense of space. Plus, they make it a whole lot easier to reach for necessities. Go with shelves with a shallower depth if you want your small kitchen to feel bigger.

Design: House of Chais

Tip 6: Or go with top glass cabinets

Open shelves not for you? Get cabinets with glass fronts instead. While they aren’t as effective visually, they can help elevate some of the visual bulk you usually get with uppers. They are also a great way to show off all those beautiful wares.

Design: Parenthesis

Tip 7: Alternatively, do away with everything at the top altogether

If you don’t need all that extra storage, do away with upper everything altogether. You can work in an extra cool backsplash that reaches all the way to the ceiling so your space doesn’t feel bare.

Image: Amoz Boon

Tip 8: Don’t leave too many things out in the counters

Clutter is a sure-fire way to make your small kitchen feel and look even smaller. Keep as much things hidden away as you can and only leave out everyday appliances that will be too much of a chore to keep in and out.

Design: Authors Interior & Styling

Tip 9: Closed kitchen? Get a window in.

Closed kitchens are much appreciated if you tend to do heavy cooking and want to keep the fumes and smells confined to your kitchen space. But they can seem claustrophobic if you don’t have a lot of square footage. Do up a glass window that will help to invite light and a sense of spaciousness without having to go totally open concept.

Design: Hock Hoon

Tip 10: Skip the ornamentation

In a small kitchen, you will want to keep things as minimalist and fuss-free visually as possible. To do so, reduce the detailing in your kitchen designs. That means going with handle-less cabinets, flat cabinet fronts instead of shaker style cabinets and keep to clean lines that can help to draw the eye either upward or across.

Design: 360 Interior

Tip 11: Do you really need that huge hob or double bowl sink?

Forget the huge freestanding gas stove or the double bowl sink if you have a small kitchen. They take up a lot of physical space, which means you won’t have a lot of countertop space to prep on. And food prep is a huge part of cooking so you will want to keep that in mind. Go with built-in induction hobs that are super sleek and a single bowl sink that has extra depth so you can wash bigger pots and pans easily.

Design: Home Philosophy

Tip 12: Get integrated appliances

Another way to make your small kitchen seem bigger? Integrated appliances. They blend in with the rest of your kitchen cabinets so your space will feel neater and more seamless visually. Appliances that can be integrated include your dishwasher, oven, microwave and the refrigerator.

Alternatively, you don’t have to get specific integrated appliances. Just have your kitchen carpentry flush with the appliances you are getting so they appear like they are integrated. This means you will have to get the dimensions of your appliances before your kitchen renovation commences. Plan this with your interior designer early!

Design: Free Space Intent


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