Projects & Improvements

10 Brilliant Ways to Make Your Tiny Kitchen Look and Feel Much Larger

published Mar 19, 2019
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(Image credit: Melanie Rieders)

Feeling confined by the limits of your tiny kitchen? Well, we’re here to tell you that the limits do not exist! All you have to do to improve your tiny kitchen is master the art of optical illusion. It’s actually pretty easy. Here are a few ways to maximize your space and make your kitchen feel a million times larger than it actually is. Try these 10 on for size.

(Image credit: Minette Hand)

1. Go with some clear furniture.

If you absolutely need to put more stuff in your tiny space, consider going the acrylic route. You can get clear chairs, shelves, storage canisters, etc. They’ll give you what you need without adding visual clutter too. Now you see it, now you don’t.

(Image credit: Pablo Enriquez)

2. Take advantage of vertical storage.

Vertical storage—whether it’s hanging from the wall or ceiling—helps to draw the eye, creating a semblance of more space. Plus, it also gives you more actual storage space.

(Image credit: Andrea Sparacio)

3. Fake space with a mirror.

Master of illusions, Harry Houdini, once said that every tiny kitchen should have a mirror. JK, he did not, but he’d definitely agree that they have the power to trick the eye, reflect light, and make things look larger than they actually are.

(Image credit: Melanie Rieders)

4. Go monochromatic.

It might be the oldest trick in the book, but the best way to make a cramped space appear larger is to keep everything the same color—experts usually recommend white. Dark colors can make rooms look smaller, and if you’re working with a really small space, you want to avoid creating a cave-like effect.

(Image credit: Marisa Vitale)

5. Buy things you want to leave out.

One solution to minimal storage space is to invest in pieces that you don’t want to hide. Splurge on that copper cookware set, the Dutch oven of your dreams, or a KitchenAid in your favorite color. This will free up cabinets and decorate your space with things that are also functional.

(Image credit: Minette Hand)

6. But be careful of countertop clutter.

In addition to unnecessary appliances and canisters, kitchen counters can be magnets for paper clutter (like mail, coupons, work stuff, homework, etc!). The more stuff that sits on your counters — especially the stuff that doesn’t belong — the more crowded your kitchen is going to feel.

(Image credit: Emily Billings)

7. Take the doors off a few cabinets.

Have you ever thought that your cabinets are making your space appear even more closed off? You officially have our permission to DIY an open shelving unit by taking the doors off a select few cabinets. Just be sure that whatever is inside is neat and organized.

(Image credit: Christine Han)

8. Wash (and put away) your dishes — frequently!

We don’t mean to burst your bubble here, but a very simple solution to improving your tiny kitchen is by washing your dishes. Getting rid of a stack of dirty pots and pans in your sink will not only give you peace of mind, but it will also free up visual space.

(Image credit: Reagen Taylor)

9. Add a light or two under the cabinets.

Short of magically installing floor-to-ceiling windows to let light flood in, under-the-cabinet lighting is the best fix for a dark and cramped kitchen. There’s more than one way to get the same effect: Choose from puck lights, fluorescent light bars, or LED light bars to brighten up your space.

(Image credit: Brittany Purlee)

10. Decorate

Just because your space is small doesn’t mean you can’t have all the nice things that bigger kitchens have. Put down a rug! Add some plants! Hang art! Install curtains! These little touches will make the space feel more comfortable—no matter how small it is.

Do you have anything else to add? Leave your ideas in the comments below!

This post originally ran on Kitchen, which you can read here: 10 Brilliant Ways to Make Your Tiny Kitchen Look and Feel Much Bigger