The kitchen is often lauded as the ‘heart of the home’, but in reality, the British kitchen has shrunk by over a third since the 1960s. Nowhere is this truer than in our cities, where new build homes can have kitchens as little as half the size of an average parking space. The reason? According to estate agents, kitchen manufacturers and the like, our lifestyles are to blame (of course they are). Young urbanites are eating out more than ever before, deeming a spacious kitchen apparently redundant. A small price to pay for all that gallivanting around town, but depressing nonetheless. But fear not – small can be beautiful and functional – not to mention quicker to clean.
Take your lead from these swoon-worthy small kitchens. For what they lack in size, they more than make up for in style. So much so, that you may find yourself seriously considering a down-size. It’s officially a fact: good things really do come in small packages (where kitchens are concerned at least.)
This pint-sized kitchen goes to show you needn’t be nervous about mixing up your materials in a small space. Keep to a neutral colour palette and go to town with reclaimed wood, ceramic metro tiles, copper – anything goes. The use of cladding will also give your kitchen a cosy cabin feel, as supposed to just being plain old small. A handsome dish, indeed.
When space is tight, appliances will inevitably end up dominating, so you may as well make a statement out of them. Enter the middle class trophy fridge of the Noughties; the Smeg fridge freezer. This red number gives a pared-back Scandi scheme a hit of flavour, but if you haven’t got a spare grand floating around, try painting your free standing fridge (black looks super chic). Also note the neat counter dining shelf – just pretend you’re at the bar somewhere fabulous.
Another all-white kitchen, this time with a monochrome slant. Using a rug or runner in a kitchen instantly gives it a homely feel – after all, why shouldn’t a bijoux cook space feel just as luxe as the rest of your home? Open shelving and a wall-mounted knife rack create extra storage and keep essential utensils close at hand for whipping up a culinary storm. Or just cutting up that take-away pizza...
Be brave with an unexpected colour palette in your kitchen and its diminutive size will be the last thing anyone notices. It’s certainly the case for this Parisian apartment. Throw in some patterned floor tiles, statement lighting, hang some wall art (you’ll want something interesting to look at if you lack windows in your kitchen) and top off with mid-century furniture – et voilà! Cool, non?
There’s nothing as satisfying as a well-organised set of shelves. Ok, there are lots of things more satisfying, but this kitchen is definitely one for neat freaks who delight in having things just so. Using an array of storage methods, from hanging racks to shelves and trolleys, this industrial-style kitchen utilises every inch of space all the way up to the ceiling. On-trend black walls and a sleek stainless steel finish make it the ultimate cook zone. Yes, chef.
A minuscule kitchen’s main downside is that you’ll miss out on all the gossip going on in the next room – which calls for drastic measures. Removing an interior wall to create an open plan space is an investment, but will make for a more convivial household. Retain a part of the wall for a counter area to zone the different spaces and provide a perch for company. The actual kitchen might still be small, but at least now you’ll have someone on hand to top up your wine glass as you cook.
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