Older homes with smaller kitchens sometimes have the refrigerator inside the "U" but that really eats into the counter space. Most often you’ll see a U‐shaped kitchen with the refrigerator on the adjacent wall right outside the "U" which is fine. It’s still within the work triangle. One signature of the U‐shaped kitchen is the peninsula. In this case it doesn’t have seating due to the passageway between rooms. The lack of kitchen seating is often the reason people prefer the L‐shaped kitchen with an island to the U‐shaped kitchen.
Matching the floor stain color is one of the most challenging phases of a project. If you've got original floors and plan to refinish just the kitchen – or are laying new wood floors to match the old for continuity – don't expect a perfect match. Many floors in old homes are made of old‐growth wood and flooring is manufactured differently now. The natural patina of an old floor also is nearly impossible to match. Companies offering reclaimed wood floors can make that matching process easier.
Island. No matter how modestly sized an island can provide invaluable space for working serving and storing. I recently interviewed a designer who advised that we take the recommended dimensions and clearances with a grain of salt as they tend to work only for mansions and in Fantasyland. As long as you’re not bruising a hip every time you round the island you have enough space.
Most Viewed Gallery Kitchen
Organize inside. It may sound like a no‐brainer but often what makes a kitchen big or small organized is how we arrange the insides of our cupboards. Shelf and drawer dividers hooks racks and other storage devices are key to keeping order. Consider what works for you and go custom if you can. Are you a Mason jar and Tupperware kind of person? Do you prefer mugs on hooks shelves or in drawers? Storage is often about personal preference. Here the slim slots for chopping boards and placemats are a brilliant idea as is the slim pullout spice rack.
The layering and mixing of finishes in this kitchen give it an old‐world charm. Note the glazed blue‐gray island and its relationship to the pendant above. The choices for a mahogany‐tone wood countertop dark trim around the windows and a custom hood surround in particular were all made during the process of designing this kitchen and impact the overall finished look and style.
Go minimal. Are you in the process of picking new cabinets for your compact kitchen? Consider this look. Ultra‐plain handleless cabinets in a nude hue are soothing to look at and give a sense of visual order. Pick a seamless backsplash such as this slab of marble since tiles with grout can look busy. Get in a tight corner. When space is tight an ingenious trio of pullout corner drawers is a lifesaver helping to solve the problem of lost space in those awkward‐to‐access base cabinets. If you’re remodeling think about how you’d use such drawers – for cutlery towels pans dishes? Here a slimmer top drawer is complemented by the two deeper ones so all the bases are covered.