Is your kitchen long and narrow?  A small, narrow space can sometimes feel cramped, cluttered and utilitarian. Wouldn’t it be nice to avoid that awkward dance of juggling for space and a continuous dialogue of “excuse me” when you have to share your kitchen with someone else?  I’m all for togetherness, but not if it means I might get spaghetti sauce spilled on my favorite white sweater! How can you make the most of what you have, without undergoing a major renovation project?  Read on, because some of these simple design tips can help your space feel less cramped:

  • Use light paint colors in the room. Lighter colors recede and fool the eye into thinking the space is larger than it actually is. Darker colors should be used judiciously since they advance and will make your kitchen feel even narrower than it already is.
  • Install overhead lighting that is streamlined and simple. This is not the place to hang a statement piece!
  • Install open shelving – Replacing wall cabinets with open shelving will be visually lighter and give the illusion of more space. Just make sure you are keeping what’s on the shelves neat and organized.

The galley kitchen (a popular term for a narrow kitchen) which was popular in the 50’s and 60’s is back in full force, so if you already have a small narrow kitchen you’re keeping up with the trend – go figure! Yet sometimes this type of kitchen can feel small and cramped. So, what is a homeowner to do?

  • Use pattern on the floor or ceiling to add visual interest and draw the eye to an interesting design feature. This will take the focus off the shape of the room.
  • Avoid clutter – Freeing up your counter space by tucking away utensil crocks and small appliances will not only make the kitchen feel tidier but more open as well. Invest in some after-market products from manufacturer’s like Rev-a-shelf to make the most out of your existing cabinet storage
  • Avoid stripes and think round with lighting and decorative features in the space – for example pendants and round knobs
  • Put your furniture on a diet – if there are any furniture pieces in the room, think light and slim. This especially applies to bar stools – go backless, keep the details minimal, and the legs slim.
  • Go for glass – Swapping out a couple of your cabinet doors to glass will go a long way towards visually expanding the space. If you don’t have a handy carpenter who can do this, ask your kitchen design specialist if they can order replacement doors with the center panel prepped for glass. Play with the type of glass – there’s a lot more options out there than clear or frosted!

Check out this cool design idea for a narrow kitchen we love!

Photo courtesy of Style by Emily

Here’s a link to our Houzz Ideabook showing some of our favorite narrow kitchens