Monday, April 11, 2016

Making the most of a small kitchen

I may have panicked a bit before we moved into our new house. I just didn't know how we were going to fit everything into the teensy kitchen; how it was going to work for an avid home cook like me.
View through the kitchen to the laundry and downstairs toilet. 
I spent a good couple of weeks Googling small kitchen tips and storage solutions. The best tips I found were to get rid of hardly-used items, and to make use of vertical space. I've been hanging hooks, shelves and magnetic knife blocks around the place to get things off the bench and onto the walls.

Magnetic knife block, hooks for large cutlery and shelf for kettle and compost.
The minimalist in me would prefer not to have knives and cutlery hanging off the walls, but there really isn't anywhere else to put them in this little kitchen. I regularly use the flat surface of the stove as extra bench space for prepping food, so it is handy to have my knives in easy reach.

Oven mitts hang from a hook on the inside of a cupboard door. 
This cupboard is right next to the oven, so I hung a hook inside the door for my oven mitts.

Aprons and a bag holder hang from hooks in the laundry. 
I put up hooks on the laundry wall for a hand towel and washing basket, and Paul installed the shelf so we would have somewhere easy to access hand soap and clothes washing liquid. The laundry sink doubles as a hand-washing space for the toilet next to the laundry, and I also use it as a second kitchen sink for rinsing large pots and dishes since the kitchen sink is so small. (And of course the washing machine empties into this sink too.)

Our dish rack gets constant use, since we don't have a dishwasher.
Cutlery drawer. 
I bought this cutlery divider without measuring my drawer first. When I got it back to the house I realised it was too small for the drawer. Then I figured that if I turned it side-ways and cut off the lip at each end, I could wedge it into the drawer and still have room behind for larger cutlery items. It may look like a hack job, but since there are only two drawers in the kitchen, I call that a win!

The other kitchen drawer. 
We had to buy a new fridge/freezer, as our old one was too wide for the space. I chose a half/half fridge/freezer because I freeze a lot of food. We also have a full standing freezer in our garage. I removed the pull-out vege drawer from the fridge, so I could fit my two large Tupperware Fridgemate containers in the space.
The pantry is a pretty decent size, and I love that it has real wooden shelves and doors.

Bottom of pantry. 
I'm using the bottom section of the pantry to store crockery, small appliances and a few food items like milk powder and cereal (which I'm still trying to find in bulk so I can buy them without the packaging).
This corner plate-stacker makes good use of a small space. 
Small appliances and cookbooks next to fridge.
My Thermomix always lives on this little bench, since I use it daily, but other appliances like my slow cooker come and go as I need them and live under the pantry the rest of the time. The open shelves above the little bench house our microwave, my favourite cookbooks and our cups and mugs.

View from outside: Washing line and backdoor leading into laundry/kitchen. 

Rotating compost bin lives just past the washing line. 

View from kitchen into dining room. 
So that's our little kitchen. I know it doesn't look like much, but I LOVE it. I am so happy to be in this space and able to call it my own. It feels like such a gift.

I keep thinking if I was living in a Little House on the Prairie, building my own house from scratch, it surely wouldn't have all the things my kitchen has. I wouldn't even know how to build a kitchen from scratch so we'd just be cooking off the floor.

I've been so happy pottering around in my kitchen, cooking meals and baking a'plenty. Every time I remember it's my own kitchen, I smile. 


  1. Well.. I'm gob-smacked. This is amazing. I have loads of drawers and cupboards and I don't use my space anywhere near as efficiently as you do. You need to come and visit!! So glad you are very happy there.

    1. I think you just fill whatever space you have. I definitely wasn't this efficient with our last kitchen.

  2. I love the idea of a hook on the wall for a washing basket! I have had to keep mine sitting across the top of my bathtub...going to have to get me my own hook!

  3. Can I ask where you got your rotating compost bin from? It looks like the perfect size :)

    1. I bought it at Mitre 10. It's called a Jobmate.

    2. It has two compartments, so you fill one and then leave it to cure while you fill the other side.


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