Hello! Ever since I wrote my post last week about our teensy kitchen, I’ve been on fire thinking up ways to get the most from the space so I’m back with some of my top tips!
We’re renters, so while I could write a million posts about things I’d do in this kitchen if I owned it (pot rack, wall mounted lid racks, more sensibly proportion cabinets, extra shelving….etc), here are some ideas that anyone can do – whether you own your house or not).
1) Never underestimate the power of extra shelves. All of our cabinets are these stupid massive boxes with no interior shelves. They’re too shallow for the normal shelves you can put inside cabinets, but these half ones from Ikea give us just a little bit of extra vertical storage space.
(I know, I know, we could totally easily build extra shelves in here, but something so permanent is a little bit down the line, if we’re even here long enough to fully commit to customising stuff like that.)
Update! See some more extra shelves we added to make better sense of an odd cupboard right here.
2) Do what makes the most sense, whether it’s what people normally do or not. Mugs live in cupboards or on shelves, right? no! With so few easily accessible shelves, we’ve ended up with mugs in a drawer. Keeping mugs in our cupboards led to a whole load of wasted vertical space. Keeping them in the drawer makes the most sense, for us.
I might put down a pad in the bottom to keep them in place, or construct some sort of divider (like this?) if I think they’re at risk of breaking. (It helps that we have no kids who will open and slam the drawer.)
While we’re talking drawer storage, I had these scrappy bits of quilted fabric from a project that I ended up not making, so I made them into pan liners so we could stack our non-stick without damaging them.
Hey, they don’t look perfect, but leftover fabric and batting is better than spending £4.99, right? (Hmm. Until this moment I thought those things were £4.99 each, not per three….probably would have been better to just buy them!)
3) Think outside the room! The advantage of small space living is that things can be the opposite side of the flat to the kitchen but still be easily within reach.
The kitchen is one of the smallest rooms in the flat so it makes sense to use the other rooms to store kitchen items. Right now we keep this stack of lesser used items in our bedroom cupboard
(but I’m refinishing a cabinet to keep them in the living room, because I’d rather keep jumpers here). I’ve now moved these items into a cabinet in the living room, and jumpers live here, but a bedroom closet is still a great place to keep kitchenware (the living room just made more sense for us).
We also have this shelf of cookery books in the sitting room.
4) Get stuff off the counter. As you can see, I’m ok with appliances on the countertop. (Sure, it would look clearer without but I don’t see any other choice here.) But! I do agree with keeping as much small, cluttery stuff off the counters as possible.
I picked up four of these hooks from Ikea (they’re actually from the Pax wardrobe range) and use them to corral onions, garlic and kitchen roll. The onions etc are this small wire basket and the kitchen roll is strung up using some black grosgrain ribbon. Oh, and gotta love a magnetic knife rack.
5) Back of the door! Buoyed by how well my cord and charger organiser worked, I bought this over-door organiser to whip the kitchen into shape. This time I decided to go for a bold graphic labeling system rather than adding pictures to the pockets. It’s not pretty but I love it because it’s really working well so far (and it freed up a load of drawer space).
What are your favourite tips for small space living?
PS. Smitten Kitchen’s top tips are here