Clever space-saving details and a creative floor plan can put a new spin on your family’s eat-in kitchen. Follow these tips from interior designer Emily Mackie:
Checklist: What you need for a workable small kitchen.
• Stash that trash. When everything in your kitchen sparkles, the last thing you want to see is a trash can out in the open. Instead, suggests Emily, “slide the trash bin under the kitchen sink.” Hardware and built-in options are available too.
• Forget the work triangle. If you followed conventional kitchen design wisdom, you’d have no counter space or room to work. “What actually works is sticking the refrigerator in the most discreet location and putting the freezer in a more remote location,” says Emily.
• Put some cork in it. Line the inside of a pantry cabinet with cork to create a DIY family board, where kids can get a glance at the week’s activities and homework assignments while grabbing snacks, Emily recommends.
• A bigger budget isn’t always better. “People can get stuck on one or two things (like a countertop material) they think they absolutely must have,” says Emily. “Ask yourself how important is it going to be in five years or when you sell your home? You can find cheaper options.”
• Hide clutter with clever storage. By including plenty of storage, you can display pretty pieces on open shelves and pack away the not-so-pretty items. You can also find creative ways to hide clutter, like the hidden storage within the window seat.
• Strategize your table: If a round or square table takes up all the space in your breakfast nook, switch it out for a rectangular one that maximizes your space.
Interior designer Emily Mackie, ASID, is the owner of Inspired Interiors, an interior design firm, showroom and home furnishings store in Chicago. Learn more about Inspired Interiors here.
Written by Margie Monin Dombrowski
Styling by Emily Mackie
Photography courtesy of Inspired Interiors