It has been awhile since I updated you all on the kitchen progress. Over the past year, we have been working on making our kitchen/dining area function for our family. Our kitchen, dining table, main entrance and basement access are all located within this 15’-6” x 10’-4” space, so we have been coming up with Small Space Solutions to work with what we’ve got. If you are just joining me on the blog, see our Pot Rack, the Fruit Basket, and the Microwave and Hall Closet ideas. We also took out an upper cabinet and installed some open shelves, along with a row of coat hooks and a sliding door. Here is the microwave in it’s current home:
All of these solutions have really helped our kitchen accommodate our little family much better, which brings me to a few more tips on updating your kitchen relatively quickly and somewhat painlessly.
1. Clear out unused items. Go through cupboards and drawers, and be ruthless. Decide how many spatulas and rolling pins you really need, and get rid of the rest. When your drawers aren’t cluttered up with excess stuff, you will be able to quickly find things you need, and it will be easier to put them back in the correct spot.
2. Arrange according to function. If possible, locate items in cupboards according to the function of the space. If a section of the countertop is frequently used for baking, locate all baking supplies in the cupboard above the counter. That way it is readily available when needed. It is also convenient to locate frequently used dishes and utensils close to the dishwasher and sink. They can be unloaded directly into their spots with minimal movement around the kitchen.
3. Update cabinetry.This isn’t a super quick update, but it is relatively simple and has a big impact. I recently painted my basic cabinetry and added hardware to the cupboards and drawers. I chose white because all of our appliances are white, and because the kitchen is very small and I wanted to keep it looking clean and bright. Adding handles and drawer pulls where none existed has made the biggest difference as far as function. *all remaining pulls have been added since the photo below was taken.* I also used the same pulls for drawers as well as cupboards, and chose to center the pulls on the bottom edge of the upper cabinets. I love how they look and they are very easy to open.
4. Look for unused or wasted space. We recently added labeled baskets above our upper cabinets for extra storage. It really helps with overflow from our pantry closet. We also moved some white dishes from the pantry to above the cabinets.
5. Paint the walls a happy color. Since you likely spend a good amount of time in the kitchen, choose a color that is reflective of you and your family. To make our small kitchen/dining space seem larger, we have painted it a bright and light gray. This also allows me to use pops of color in art and other kitchen accessories.
6. Change out your accessories. A new dish towel or two will go a long way in sprucing up your kitchen. Decorative mixing bowls displayed on a shelf, a fun patterned rug, simple curtains, or new chair pads are all simple and quick ways to help make your time spent in the kitchen a lot more fun.
Go ahead, rethink your kitchen a bit. See if you can make a few changes and add some zest to your space.