Designing Small Kitchen Spaces

Small kitchen spaces may come with some challenges, but with the right know-how, they can be truly beautiful, functional spaces.  Maximize your small kitchen space with these design tips!

Focus on functionality

A small kitchen space may not be able to accommodate everything a large kitchen might, so it is important to focus on making room for the appliances and work areas you will be using on a regular basis.  Make sure that your stovetop, refrigerator and sink are all easily accessible with adequate countertop space around each.  Focusing on the essentials will ensure you do not waste valuable space on unnecessary items or materials, and will help you maximize your kitchen’s functionality.

Color selection

Selecting a light or neutral color palette can help keep a small kitchen feeling open and bright, while utilizing bold colors can draw visual interest.  Regardless of whether you choose light or bold colors, aim to keep your color scheme consistent throughout the kitchen to minimize distractions and keep the space feeling large.


Slim, open shelving can keep your kitchen space feeling open and will allow for display space, as well as storage (dishes, mugs, glasses, etc.)

Creative storage solutions

Storage is key in any kitchen space, but it is particularly crucial in a small kitchen.  We’ve discussed in our previous blog some unique solution ideas that can help elevate a kitchen space’s functionality and efficiency.  Consider some other creative storage solutions that would work well in small spaces such as over-sink cutting boards, magnetic knife strips, sliding doors, rolling shelves, and pot racks.


Designing kitchen cabinetry all the way to the ceiling will help you maximize storage space, but may feel a little closed off in a small kitchen.  A great way to offset this effect is to incorporate some glass into the cabinetry, which can keep the space feeling open and bright. You can also opt to break up some of the cabinetry with open shelving in one or two places.


It is crucial to have ample lighting in your kitchen space – poor lighting will contribute to your kitchen feeling significantly smaller.  Consider utilizing pendant or sconce lighting, under cabinet and interior cabinet lighting, as well as flush mount or recessed ceiling lighting.  Utilizing multiple types of lighting in your kitchen will not only ensure it is well-lit, but can also contribute some great design details in the space.

Finishes and Materials

Don’t be afraid to get creative with your kitchen finishes and materials – utilizing assorted finishes and patterns can help breathe life into your small kitchen. An example of this could be designing with matte finished cabinets, a glossy backsplash, and brushed brass hardware for a layered look with plenty of visual interest and depth.  Just be sure that your materials are contributing to a consistent color scheme.