Get a Bigger Kitchen Without Remodeling

You can create spaces in places you already have.

| September/October 2008

  • Many cultures consider the kitchen the heart of the home. Keep your home’s heart running smoothly by trimming some fat.
  • A cluttered kitchen increases cooking stress and reduces relaxation during meals. Reorganize and streamline for a larger-feeling kitchen.
  • Shelving built into or hung on extra wall space provides storage for cookbooks, décor or tools without taking up valuable counter space.
  • Simple drawer organizers designate space to everyday items such as utensils and cooking tools.
  • Removing excess clutter from the entryway, dining area and countertops creates a more serene kitchen.
  • Installing low-depth shelving above counters adds instant space, while storing large, often-used appliances in the open can increase their use. Don’t use it enough to leave it sitting out? Consider whether you really need it.
  • Hanging pots and pans on wall racks keeps them handy and gives you additional cabinet space.
  • Minor changes can alter the look of your kitchen. Removing the sides

Flip through any home magazine (including this one), and you’ll find a healthy selection of sleek, spacious and orderly kitchens, their calm beauty practically irresistible. As alluring as these designer kitchens might be, however, remodeling to get one is not as pleasant a prospect. Any remodeling survivor will attest to the enormous mental and physical stress, expense and time investment that accompany a project. And even if you use the greenest materials, there’s still a good amount of environmental fallout associated with a kitchen remodel.

Is it possible to get a bigger kitchen without remodeling? Absolutely. By using the space you have more wisely, you can create the serene and spacious kitchen of your dreams.

Step 1: Remove

If anything stands in the way of a well-functioning kitchen, it’s clutter. Maneuvering around counters and cupboards overrun with outdated rice mixes, half-used bags of pasta, broken blenders and unwieldy stacks of lids is just no fun.

The simple solution. Remove the excess and don’t be bashful about it! As a general rule, recycle anything you haven’t used in the past year. If you have trouble parting with an item, box it and store in the garage for a while to ease the transition. (If you still haven’t used it one year later, recycle or donate it.) Call a professional organizer or a good friend if you need more help letting go of stuff.

Step 2: Rearrange

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