How to Make Your Small Kitchen Seem Bigger – 10 Expert Tips

Does your kitchen feel small, gloomy, and cramped?

If so, don’t despair! You can do many things to help make your kitchen feel bigger, brighter, and more welcoming.

Take a look at the list below. The more these tips you can incorporate into your kitchen, the larger your kitchen will seem!

small modern kitchen

Choose Light Colours

Three main design components can determine a room's spaciousness. These are colours, lighting, and the contents of the room. One of the easiest things you can do to make your kitchen seem larger is to consider decorating the room in a light, bright colour.

If your small kitchen walls are dark, the room may seem gloomy and crowded. Lighter shades offer a bright and airy feeling. The best shades to help your small kitchen seem larger include:

  • Bright white
  • Off-white
  • Light yellows
  • Creams
  • Pale shades of grey

Add Reflective Materials

Shiny kitchen surfaces can help reflect light and bounce it around the room. This makes the room much brighter and gives the illusion of a much larger one.

So, with this in mind, consider adding some reflective materials throughout your kitchen.

Mirrored appliances are a great option as these prevent you from having to add anything extra to your kitchen, preventing clutter. Glass cabinet doors are also a brilliant way to bounce light around the room. Alternatively, you could opt for a glass-tiled splashback or a metallic splashback such as copper or silver.

gloss kitchen

In addition, you could choose a reflective countertop. When paired with under-cabinet lighting, this can accentuate the room's light and make the space seem larger.

Expand The Space With Cabinets

If you're considering adding new cabinets to your kitchen, choose taller cabinets that can raise your gaze and make the ceiling feel higher. Taller cabinets also mean that you'll have more storage to help tame the clutter.

This is a huge benefit for smaller kitchens.

If you're choosing tall cabinets, ensure they're finished in a light colour. Avoid intricate designs, as these could appear too busy in your small kitchen. Flat doors work well in a small kitchen as these can help complement the room's clean lines. When choosing hardware for your cabinets, keep things simple.

Avoid Strong Visual Contrasts

Once you’ve chosen a colour for your kitchen, stick to it.

Some homeowners may be tempted to liven things up like an accent wall. While this can work well in a larger kitchen, in a smaller kitchen, the strong visual contrast can make the room seem segmented and restricted.

You want to keep your kitchen walls light and bright in a small kitchen. If you want to introduce some additional colour to the room, these should be added in smaller, temporary ways.

colourful cups

For example, could you add some colourful tea towels, window treatments, or accessories? A coloured matching toaster, kettle, and microwave set can do a great job at adding some pops of colour to your small kitchen.

Keep The Room Clutter-Free

Items such as cookbooks, spices, and small appliances can occupy a lot of valuable space on the countertops. This will make the room seem smaller and highlight the need for more space.

If you are thinking about adding some new cabinets to your kitchen, be sure to choose cabinets with lots of storage solutions so that you can find a space for everything, ultimately eliminating the countertop clutter.

Taller upper kitchen cabinets can provide more space for storing all the clutter. In addition, consider some customisable options such as pull-out or swing-out shelves or concealed storage racks.

These additional options can provide maximum storage for your small kitchen, allowing you to hide things away neatly behind closed doors.

The less cluttered the kitchen is, the larger it will seem!

Add Accent Lighting

The eyes are naturally drawn to the highest contrasting point in the room. When it comes to the kitchen, this area is usually the top of the cabinets. If shadows create a strong visual line between the ceiling and the top of the cabinets, this can make the kitchen seem smaller.

Adding uplighting on top of the cabinets is the best way to soften these shadows. This will cast a gentle illumination upwards and ease the visual contrast created by the shadows.

This will make the room seem much more open.

kitchen cabinet lighting

Similarly, you can install lighting beneath the upper cabinets. This will direct light onto the countertop in a similar way. The light will eliminate any shadows underneath the cabinets, helping to reduce the contrast. This will help your kitchen look much larger.

Choose Glass Cabinet Doors

Replacing your old cabinet doors with glass-fronted doors can be very appealing and trick the eye into thinking the kitchen is much larger than it is. The eye will be drawn into the cupboard before stopping at the door.

This creates the illusion of more space!

If you consider adding glass-fronted cabinets to your kitchen, choose light wood or white-coloured cabinets to maximise the spacious effect.

If you’re worried about showing the inside of your cupboards or thinking it will look messy, all hope is not lost. You could consider opting for opaque glass cabinets.

These will offer the benefit of making the kitchen look brighter and larger while concealing what’s inside the cupboards. Opaque glass can reflect light around the room, brightening the kitchen and making it seem larger.

Open Up The Floor Space

Freeing up as much floor space as possible in a small kitchen is important. If you have a table in the kitchen, choose one that can be folded between your meals. If that isn't an option, choose a small dining table.

Any other freestanding surfaces in the room, such as a cabinet or a kitchen island, must also be small. If you can do without these items – even better!

folding table

You can increase your floor space for foot traffic by choosing smaller or fewer items. This makes it easier to prepare meals and manoeuvre around your kitchen.

Choosing appliances such as a built-in:

  • Oven
  • Refrigerator
  • Dishwasher
  • Washing machine

This can help you save on floor space!

Invite Natural Light Into The Room

One of the best things you can do to make a room seem bigger is to invite as much natural light as possible. Get rid of any curtains or blinds that may be blocking the light. Leaving the window uncovered will allow much more light into the room.

If you want a window covering, consider a simple roller blind that can be rolled up during the day. Alternatively, consider choosing sheer curtains.

Also, avoid placing anything large on the windowsill or in front of the window, as this could block the light from entering the room. Also, maximise the light that bounces around the room by choosing glossy construction materials and adding reflective items like small reflective accents and mirrors.

One large mirror on the kitchen wall can make a big difference in making the room seem much brighter and larger.

Choose Open Shelving

Open storage options provide a spacious and airy appearance in your small kitchen. Consider removing a couple of your cabinet doors. Step back, and you will instantly see the illusion of additional space.

However, this trick will only work if your cupboards are manageable with stuff. If you have cluttered open shelves, this will only make the room seem more overwhelming and smaller.

open kitchen shelving

With this in mind, having a clearout is a good idea to ensure you're only keeping hold of what you're using. Get rid of any out-of-date food and drink items and throw away anything you haven’t used or don’t intend to use any time soon.

If you need additional storage, consider installing floating shelves on a kitchen wall. This will allow you to store additional items without taking up any floor space or adding anything too bulky.

Last updated by MyJobQuote on 14th September 2023.
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