Bright ideas for remodelling your kitchen

In most homes the kitchen remains the hub of family life. In larger kitchens the family can gather around the table for a companionable meal and even in smaller kitchens it is the place for an intimate breakfast or everyday gathering place. Large or small, the well-designed kitchen holds centre stage in any household to prepare meals, organise dinner parties, or simply to make a snack.
Fads and fashions will come and go, but at its core the kitchen remains a functional space that needs to be tidy, hygienic and organised. Are you tired of having to look for the corkscrew? struggling to close the drawers because stuff won’t fit back into it once you have found the elusive peeler? plastic containers crashing down every time you open a cabinet door? If any of these sounds familiar, this article is meant for you!
Whether you have a large kitchen where the family habitually congregates, or a small apartment kitchenette, here are ten ideas to help organise your kitchen to be more functional, efficient and to utilise space better, while maintaining a classy look.

1. Kitchen worktops:
This remains the prime “real estate” in your kitchen. Nothing can beat wide, attractive, stylish worktops for displaying your special crockery and appliances and keeping them handy for instant use. The more worktop space you have, the greater the pleasure of cooking and baking and for setting out the special preparation bowls, serving dishes, or special occasion serving platters.
A myriad of striking worktop storage and display bins are available to avoid a cluttered look or your kitchen looking like a storage room or pantry. In fact, the worktops can become your special display case to not only keep things handy, but make the kitchen look charming.
Depending on your preference and taste, at the top end of worktops you have the choice of solid surface, quartz, natural stone and wood surfaces in a multitude of colours, textures, finishes and accessories. Ask the specialists at for more advice.

2. Nesting table:
Add a nesting table underneath your worktops, breakfast top or kitchen island for that extra space when you are preparing for larger gatherings or you are baking.
The nesting table could be on castors to be used separately, or fitted on slides to glide out from under the worktop.
A particularly ingenious idea is to fit an additional sliding worktop between the work surface and the cabinets. When stored, only the front of the top is visible and reduces the height of the shelving space below by only a few inches, while sliding it out on gliders can widen the work surface to almost double its normal width on those occasions that one just doesn’t have anywhere to put all those extra mixing bowls, utensils and electrical appliances. This is particularly effective if the same material worktop is used (such as solid surface, quartz, etc), possibly in a thinner slab, or in the same thickness as the worktop itself.

3. Island counter tops:
This creates a versatile worksurface, breakfast or kitchen table with easy access to the things behind you – worktops, the refrigerator, pantry cupboard, cabinets and stove. As an alternative, the stove hob can be centred in the island to give worktops space around it.
It also allows more than one person to work in the kitchen without getting in each other’s way.
This can be supplemented with mood lighting and/or storage space above the surface, or even an extractor fan or to camouflage the air conditioning duct.
Below the island counter top, you can add shelves, or cabinets, or nesting tables (on two, three, or even four sides.)

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4. Add designer cubbies around the door frame or other spaces:
A lot of usable space is lost around door openings. Fitting bespoke cubbies around door frames and other openings or spaces. Open or glass fronted, these are perfect to house vases, cookery books, condiments, spices, or display items. Not only do they create useful space, they give a unique atmosphere to a kitchen.

5. Hang things over your stove or island:
A specially designed frame to hang large utensils, kettles etc is particularly effective to create atmosphere and additional space in country style kitchens and can still accommodate a camouflaged extractor fan or air conditioning duct above.
Chrome or brightly coloured hangers can spice up a modern kitchen.

6. You can only store things on top of a shelf right? How about attaching screw-top holder to the bottom?
Holders for spices, condiments, herbs, etc can easily be attached to the bottom of shelving or cabinets to utilise unused space and have these items readily at hand when cooking.
Nail the screw top to the bottom of the shelf or cabinet and screw the jar or bottle to the top. An alternative is to use magnetic strips to hold canisters to the bottom of shelves.
Cup hooks can be screwed in to hold mugs, cups, or small utensils.

7. If you can’t hide it, turn it into a feature!
Sometimes boilers or other unsightly construction items are unavoidable in a kitchen. These can easily be turned into a feature with cladding, paint, or decorations.
Another idea is to conceal it behind shelving or plate racks on hinges to move them out of the way when maintenance or repairs are necessary.

8. Utilise the space behind refrigerators:
Wall space is some of the most useful in a kitchen and yet a lot of it is blocked by large appliances or taken up by windows. Build a cupboard for brooms or cleaning materials against the wall behind the refrigerator, with doors on the sides to access the contents. The refrigerator now stands merely a few inches further from the wall, without sacrificing that valuable space. This is particularly effective if the side of the refrigerator is next to a door or other unusable space.

9. Pantry cupboards:
The pantry cupboard has shelves in the doors, with double-sided hinged shelves that swing out to access the rear shelves and those right at the back of the cupboard.
This means there are four shelves, one behind the other, and each one is easily accessible, as opposed to one deep shelf where items right at the back are difficult to get hold of and which leads to clutter.

10. Customized storage accessories

  • Pull-out cabinet solutions customised to house pots, pans, utensils, crockery, storage containers, lids, etc
  • Tray dividers to store trays upright to take up little space and yet are easy to access.
  • A Lazy Susan with turntable to easily access items at the back of the shelf.
  • Spice racks on turntables or swivels.
  • Crockery dividers on shelves, or in welsh dressers, to store plates on their sides.
  • Drawer organisers to keep items together in their correct order.
  • Drawer inserts. Essentially a tray with holes in it to keep small jars, bottles, containers, etc upright and separate. If space is really at a premium, these inserts could be stacked to double the drawer space.

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