Creating More Space Visually

No matter how big the kitchen is, it seems there still could be more room, or more cupboard storage or more counter top work space. When you add live, warm bodies to the mix - well, sometimes it can get pretty crowded in that space. Even if you live with a tiny kitchen, we have some ideas on how you can create the illusion of more space, and in some cases, actually have more space by implementing some of these concepts.

Rollout Shelving and Under-Counter Lighting Add Space

If it's possible for you to install a base cabinet that has the cabinet door attached to rollout shelves, you're well on the way to more space. If you can't install a cabinet, or just don't have room for one, then you can create the feeling of more space by replacing solid cabinet doors with glass fronts along one wall. Lighting can also really make a difference in creating the illusion of more space. Under-the-counter lighting tends to make a space look bigger and, if your kitchen is small, use light colors and lighten the counters and cupboards.

Placement of Cabinets Creates Space

Install cabinets to the ceiling or stair-step the cabinets by starting with a tall cabinet and then line them up from tallest to shortest. You can use the space at the top for storage of things you don't use very often or use it for display of ceramics, plants, collectibles or whatever strikes your fancy. Where possible, make windows bigger and install a skylight. Light always makes things look more open.

Streamline, Organize and Get Rid of the Doors

You clean your closet and give things away a couple of times a year - why not streamline your kitchen the same way? Reorganize the kitchen and get rid of things you don't use by either giving them away or selling them. Cluttered space, especially in the kitchen, always appears smaller.

Consider taking the doors off the cupboards and using open shelving. Paint a bright color inside and use the shelving to store your pottery plates, glasses, bowls or collectibles. Removing the doors always makes the room feel bigger.

Do-It-Yourself Island Building

If your kitchen is big enough, consider replacing your kitchen table with an island. You can build it yourself and when it's finished you will have a place to eat as well as a great storage area. A really easy way to build one is to begin with base cabinets, either traditional counter height or table height. Top them with a countertop material and extend the countertop 12 to 16 inches beyond the sides of the cabinets to allow for seating. Fast, easy, and you'll have ton of space to store things.

Over and Under - Use All Space Available

Some kitchens have false drawer fronts around the sink or stove top. If you have these, you can create space to keep the area free from clutter by installing specially made trays, available at hardware stores and home centers. You might even want to install an under-the-counter microwave, can opener or spice rack.

Using any one of these ideas can help you reclaim space in your kitchen and open it up so it appears bigger.