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.
Tile Kitchen Counters. One of the more affordable counter choices (starting at $30 per square foot installed) ceramic or stone tile is incredibly durable and one of the few DIY countertop options. Maintenance can be difficult with all that grout but choosing a durable and dark grout can make things easier.
Be clever with your cabinets. Use every spare inch in a small kitchen by building recessed shelves where feasible. Here they surround an integrated refrigerator. With this design solution wall space that’s too skinny or awkwardly shaped for extra cabinets can still be used to hold frequently used items. In this kitchen it also helps open up the room and leads the eye to an appealing feature. The other clever feature in this kitchen is the cookbook niche above the door – another neat storage trick that doesn’t take up too much room. Ask a builder if one can be carved out from an existing wall.
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Recycled Glass and Cement Kitchen Counters. Although it's expensive ($100 to $160 per square foot installed) this unique combination of glass and cement is a surefire way to add character to your kitchen. Ecofriendly durable and customizable this countertop material is a top choice for a "forever home".
Here’s one solution to that aforementioned seating problem in U‐shaped kitchens: This terrific bench seating allows for that coveted kitchen table. On the minus side there is no casual counter seating.
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.