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Completely fed up of my tiny kitchen. Any suggestions?

(70 Posts)
EduCated Sun 29-Sep-13 12:57:48

Please indulge me in a Sunday afternoon whinge sad

My kitchen is really small and it's really getting annoying. I was going to treat myself to a wok the other day, then realised I just don't have anywhere to keep it, at least not without having to completely empty and re-pack the cupboard every time I want to get anything out. It looks like a disaster zone after every meal with the washing up taking up the whole side.

Is there anything I can do to make it a more useful space? Any suggestions for magic king up more space? It really doesn't help that I'm also having to keep the ironing board and mop/bucket in there as I don't have any cupboard space anywhere.

At the moment I've got a single and a double wall cupboard (mugs/glasses and food storage, respectively), a single lower cupboard with crockery/pans/Tupperware etc and the one under the sink which has all the cleaning stuff in, plus a mini wall cupboard with casserole dishes and baking stuff. How can I make better use of it all?

sleeplessbunny Sun 29-Sep-13 17:56:37

use the walls. our house is tiny and we hang stuff from the walls/ceiling wherever practical. Saucepans hanging up actually look rather nice IMO. How high are the ceilings? in our last house DH had his surfboard hanging from a couple of slings in the ceiling over the dining table. Looked rather cool I thought.

we also have the ikea magnetic strip for knives.

are you a member of pinterest? (addict, sorry grin ) they tend to have clever storage solutions on there that you could try.

could you put anything on the door? ive seen someone put a wire shelf thing on the door, one of those that just hooks over the top so no need for screws or damage. in fact you could do that in any room

delasi Sun 29-Sep-13 18:28:33

We have quite a small flat, and lived in a tiny one previously. We had our microwave in the living room in the last one... and a small fridge in the bedroom!

In our current place, what makes a big difference is actually a kitchen trolley and wall hanging for utensils. We can put food on the trolley and it has a flat top which serves as additional workspace.

The biggest difference, however, was mentioned by you earlier - declutter. We had so many mugs, cups, glasses, ramekins etc that we never used, so I stripped back - 4 each of our mugs/glasses (I also stack hi-balls in tumblers, espresso cups on mugs), got rid of ramekins, pudding pots etc, useless baking tins, just all the stuff we use and need. Don't miss a thing!

PS I realise espresso cups and various sized glasses may not sound essential, but these are the ones we use!

BrownSauceSandwich Sun 29-Sep-13 18:42:55

You need a sideboard or dresser in the living room. And definitely plastic boxes on top of cupboards. Remember that the stuff most frequently used needs to be easiest to access.

Ditch the ironing board. Nobody really needs to iron.

BrownSauceSandwich Sun 29-Sep-13 19:06:14

Oh, and have a read of this article...

It might reassure you that you're not alone, even if it doesn't give ou any practical solutions.

BrownSauceSandwich Sun 29-Sep-13 19:06:43

RandomMess Sun 29-Sep-13 19:12:24

Have a huge declutter throughout your flat being utterly ruthless?

Whereisegg Sun 29-Sep-13 19:43:59

I had an over the door thing that I hung my ironing board and iron on when I lived in a small flat.
Was about £5 from Argos I believe.

What about little hooks underneath your cupboards to hang cups on?

Def put all baking trays in oven as pp said.

you can also get wire/plastic shelves to put in cupboards that hook onto already existing shelves... so you basically get an extra shelf where you would have "dead space"

ive seen them in the range and home bargains. probably available on ebay too

willowstar Sun 29-Sep-13 20:00:19

I have a tiny kitchen which I have spent the last 4 years hating...then a couple of months ago realised that realistically we can't afford to do anything about it for at least a decade so decided to sort it out and make the most of it! We squeezed some more shelves in a coner for pans, moved all baking equipment and ingredients out to a cabinet in the hallway and had a massive ...I hung some nice postcards on a wall and put up a glass magnetic board which looks cool. I bought lock and lock storage boxes and use them in my cupboards stacked I feel much better for it and now actually love my little kitchen. I know where everything is and I don't have to move around much when cooking. Good luck!

willowstar Sun 29-Sep-13 20:01:01

That should say massive clear out

willowstar Sun 29-Sep-13 20:02:24

Oh and one of those shelves with three tiers in the cupboard maximises space, think I got from Lakeland

beachavendrea Sun 29-Sep-13 20:20:33

Haven't read the whole thread so this might have been suggested but I once saw someone use one of those back of door shoe racks to store there culture and utensils in. It looked quite nice sounds dodgy though

lostinindia Sun 29-Sep-13 20:38:38

In my last house we put up a shelf above each door in the kitchen. It was essentially dead space before. I stored my cook books on them, freeing up space on my work tops. You could try this through out your flat, freeing up quite a bit of space in each room. Or even just the bathroom and kitchen if you feel it would clutter up the space too much having one in every room. Shelves above windows is another way to claim back dead space. Putting items in matching boxes (ikea is good for slim cardboard boxes, with nice patterns too) to keep it all looking neat and less cluttered.

lostinindia Sun 29-Sep-13 20:42:19

Could you also remove the skirting on the bottom of the units and store items in white plastic boxes underneath?

EduCated Sun 29-Sep-13 23:21:36

Ooh, lots more suggestions, thank you! Having looked again, there's not actually any wall space suitable for shelves, as they'd block cupboard doors from opening. Over door is possible, actually, though over window would be out of my reach, even with a stool.

Over door thingies are a good thought. Will see what's in ikea available.

A kitchen trolley or similar is a lovely idea, but there quite simply isn't the space for it. In the floor space, there's the bin and the rest is needed for frivolities like space to open the fridge door wink

EduCated Sun 29-Sep-13 23:22:05

Not sure about removing skirting, as it's rented.

MokuMoku Sun 29-Sep-13 23:25:29

Then you really have no choice but to de-clutter or move somewhere bigger.

Tell people to stop giving you stuff as you just don't have the space.

MokuMoku Sun 29-Sep-13 23:39:48

Sorry, I didn't mean that to sound harsh.

We also moved to a place with a small kitchen so I feel your pain. I've had a massive clear out of our stuff over the last few years and it has made a huge difference.

You really don't need that much stuff to live and it is such a nice feeling being comfortable in your own space.

whodunnit Sun 29-Sep-13 23:40:48

Can you tell the landlord your problem and ask that he takes some of his furniture out to give you some room. The you can get some furniture that is more functional for you ie taller and with useable capacity inside.

I also have hooks on each side of my set of drawers and can hang pretty bags, scarves on them useful but not ugly.

Where do you eat? Can you put your crockery and cutlery there? Maybe put most of the crockery away and just leave out a couple of plates, cups etc in the kitchen. You can get the rest out if you have guests, but don't need to use up valuable kitchen space for them the rest of the time.

Ditch the ironing board and do it on the table on a heatproof mat or something. Make sure it is your table/ set of drawers so that if it gets discoloured it is your problem not his. Get a mini ironing board.

Ask the landlord if you can put in a ceiling mounted rack. He may be very understanding of your needs if he values you as a tennant, and he may agree to some of the things suggested in this thread.

Garden shed? Not in the kitchen, obviously!

canutesauntie Sun 29-Sep-13 23:56:15

If you put everything in the cupboards in boxes that stack then you can fit in a lot more than if stuff is just standing loose on a shelf, the wine glasses might even go in one on their sides! You will have to measure the space and then haunt Lakeland etc with your tape measure looking for the EXACT size blush
When I had a very small kitchen I used things like a pop up silicone colander, silicone bakeware (squidges up small) and (ikea mostly) stuff like magnetic knife strips and little metal shelf / baskets on the back of unit doors. I had a fold flat two step stepstool too for reaching the top shelftops of cupboards.
Actually thinking about it I'm still using most of it now, especially the stepstool as I'm still short.

Showtime Mon 30-Sep-13 00:23:39

Living on a boat for years, I got used to storage for small places, and still use the over-door items, keep iron etc in oven, have mini ironing-board hanging up and assorted boxes under furniture etc, with added benefit now of space in bathroom, eg
washing-machine, tall CD rack in tiny space for odds&ends and small painted furniture disguising recyclables stacked in hall. Changing furniture would make a big difference, I'm sure.

BillyBanter Mon 30-Sep-13 00:29:12

Get one of those laundry dryer things that are suspended from the ceiling and have a pulley to pull them down and up and S hooks to hang stuff from.

It does mean you need things with holes in to hook onto though.

BillyBanter Mon 30-Sep-13 00:32:01

something like this for inside cupboard or under shelf?

EduCated Mon 30-Sep-13 08:38:17

Just measured, out of interest, and it's 2.2m x 1.6m. Lots of suggestions again, keep them coming grin

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