No matter how much space your tiny kitchen lacks, it should never lack in style. Although a narrow galley kitchen may not have the same appeal as one belonging to a master chef, your seemingly less-than-ideal nook has more design potential than you might think. With a little reorganizing and a lot of TLC, the kitchen you once considered a hindrance will soon be the epicenter of your home. Need a little inspiration? The fresh spaces ahead will have you viewing your teeny galley kitchen in a whole new light.
Though it might not seem intuitive at first, exposing your shelves will visually open up your teeny set up. In her 265-square-foot East Village apartment, chef Lauren Gerrie opted for a no-fuss look so she can see and snag her various kitchen equipment with ease. Warning: Said arrangement will require you to tidy up after every cooking sesh.
Talk about kitchen cabinet envy. Crafted from the wood parts of the roof and floors of the home that stood there before, this mod-meets-rustic Amsterdam kitchen makes a serious case for using discarded and recycled materials. Cleverly hidden cabinets and drawers beneath the stairs make the most of otherwise wasted space, while sleek contemporary light fixtures balance the raw, industrial mood.
Of all the cramped kitchens (though technically, this one is not galley-style) inspiring us to live small, this dreamy home in Austin, Texas, takes the cake. Small space-friendly swaps—like designating the large farmhouse sink as the catch-all for dirty dishes as opposed to a dishwasher and installing solid wood countertops for cutting and prepping—make a world of difference.
A bright teal vintage refrigerator brings a lot of style to your small space. A tiny kitchen is the perfect place to experiment with colorful appliances. A fresh blue color pops against the grey walls.
AGo bold with brass. Commonly, kitchens feature nickel accents. Change yours up with brass pieces. These brilliantly bright pieces pop against the white cabinets and elevate a utilitarian space.
Find efficient ways to stick in storage. A smaller kitchen means that you may not have all of the cabinet space you need. Place pots and pans up high, taking advantage of unused wall space.
Think practically. Add a chalkboard wall into your kitchen. It is the perfect space to track grocery store lists and weekend plans. Write some inspirational cooking quotes on your wall when in need of some uplifting encouragement.
Play with a trend in your galley kitchen. Dark navy blue bottom cabinets perfectly complement the wonderful white ones above. Stick to classic colors, knowing that they will never go out of style.
Refinish your original floors. While tile still reigns supreme in kitchens, that doesn’t mean you can’t work with the existing hardwoods.
Keep your colors fresh. A monochromatic color scheme works in a smaller space. Paint your walls and cabinets white to achieve this look.
Throw a vintage rug into your galley kitchen. Not only is it a hot trend to have a rug in your kitchen, but it is also a practical one. Pick a style that is classic to ensure its timeless appeal.
Put some emphasis on your exposed brick. If you are lucky enough to have your home feature this type of character, play into it. Embrace it instead of hiding it.
Consider the neighboring spaces. If you are planning on doing a great deal of hosting, style the adjacent spaces accordingly. Invite guests to wander on out to your backyard after mealtime.
Open shelving is nothing new. It is not only an affordable option, but also a stylish one. This look is not for the messy people of the world. Neat-nicks unite! We’ve found a way to show off your knack for organization!
An apron front sink is on nearly everyone’s wish list! Put this splurge-worthy option in your space. Find another place to save to keep your budget balanced.
Black and white is a striking combination that we’ve been gravitating towards lately. If an absence of color is you jam, kick it up with this colorless kitchen.
Hidden hardware is always an option for those who like to keep things streamlined. Consider this style if you’re working with a minimalistic space.
Decorate with flowers. This idea is a no-brainer. Fresh florals will help to liven up any space, but particularly a stark white kitchen.
Build in a little bookcase. Even if it’s tucked in at the end of a cabinet, a small set of shelving provides practical storage while allowing you to show off your colorful cook books.
Invest in lighting. Pick the exact pieces you’ve been lusting after for your kitchen transformation. A cool new light can totally kick up the appeal of your kitchen.
Add art. Even just one piece can give you a lot of look in a tight kitchen space. A fresh floral painting adds some life to this space.
A fresh aqua tone is unexpected, but beautiful. Paint your cabinets a subtle pastel tone; this small space can handle it!
If your dishes are going on display, make sure they are a complete collection. Believe it or not, a basic white set is all your space needs.
Glass front cabinets are another way to put your dishes on display. Allow guests to peek inside to get a sneak at your glorious glassware collection.
A backsplash of subway tiles makes its mark in this cool kitchen. Try this classic look in your galley space.
Don’t forget the color! Sure, it’s easy to go basic in a kitchen, but if you’re a color lover, here’s a place to play with it.
Keep your eating space separate. Use your galley kitchen for prep work and cooking, but have a set up neighboring the space for the actual event of dining.
Pick a cool chevron tile for your backsplash. Someone with a larger kitchen may not be able to cover their wall space with such a fun look.
This story was originally published on April 18, 2016. It has been updated with new information.