First, my apologies, these photo’s are not very good! I think those of you who regularly read my blog know that I’m normally a much better photographer. These were taken with my new phone and I’m still getting use to the settings. Okay, on with A Tiny Kitchen Makeover! This project was in a very small home (just over 800 Sq’) in the historic Byrnes Down neighborhood. The homes in this neighborhood were built in the 40’s as “war homes” and their sizes reflect this historic fact. This particular house is the home of 2 adults and 2 kids who love to cook and entertain but their very limited cabinet/cupboard space has made it challenging. In the 4 hours we worked, we tackled 6 of the 8 cabinets in the kitchen. These 6 cabinets must hold ALL the food and dishes. The remaining 2 cabinets are under the sink and above the refrigerator.
Because this is an open cabinet (i.e. dust will accumulate etc) I wanted it to be filled with frequently used items that were not cluttered looking so we opted for glasses and a few serving pieces. The top shelf contains seasonal and less used items.
The daily china and smaller glasses stayed in this cabinet. Less frequently used barware was moved to the dining room and a shelf riser was installed to double the amount of short glassware and coffee mug storage. Again the top shelf contains fine china and less frequently used items.
The opposite side of the kitchen (this is a galley style kitchen) only contains 4 cabinets. This side has a trash can that lives in front of one side so the left had to store less frequently used items such as larger serving pieces and small appliances/accessories. Whenever possible I like to use containers to keep like items together, this makes it easy to locate the items when you need them and know exactly where to put them away. We took advantage of the tall space to use another riser for canned goods. A few frequently used utensils hang on the inside of the door since there are only 2 drawers in this kitchen.
This side (of the oven/stove) holds the cooking items and every day items used to make the kids lunches. By corralling all the wraps, bags, foil etc. into a door mounted unit these items are now easily accessible without bending down and digging through the cookware. The deep cabinets allowed for this good size unit to be installed and the other door can still be used if needed. Doors are a great place to store things when space is tight.
All the food staples need to fit into two cabinets less than 30″ wide. The other drawback to these cabinets is the lack of shelving, with only 2 useable shelves in each it was necessary to bring in shelf risers to accommodate more storage. The client may install additional risers or shelves in the future to fit even more in but we decided to work within boundaries of only purchasing 4 items (2 shelf risers, one stepped spice rack and the inside the door unit for the foil etc). The top shelf contains baking goods and other less frequently used foods.
Lastly the upper right cabinet contains the more frequently used breakfast and snack foods as well as pastas, rice and other staples on the top shelf (where a step stool can be used to access them relatively easily). When its constantly necessary to use a step stool I recommend finding a small collapsible one that can be mounted on the wall or slid into a tight space for easy accessibility.
Shortly after leaving this client she sent me this email:
“So excited to use our organized kitchen! Thank you Heather!”
As with all organizing projects it’s important to re-evaluate how well the changes you made are working for you. I will follow up with this client to tweak things and be sure the “system” is working for them.