Stretch, little kitchen! 7 tips for more space in the kitchen

Susanne Loacker

No matter how big the kitchen, more space is always useful. We give you some examples of how to make optimum use of work surfaces, storage areas and drawers.

A little girl is sitting on the countertop in a kitchen with white cupboards and white tiles. Her father is looking into an open drawer and her mother is standing at the stove.
© Getty Images

In this article

1. Hang up utensils

Sounds trivial, but it’s clever: if you hang up your dish brush, sieve, ladle etc. on wall hooks, they won’t be lying around on the work surface, and you won't have to waste time rummaging around for them in overcrowded drawers. Since kitchen walls are usually tiled, gluing is smarter than drilling. If an adhesive hook has to be removed one day, it can easily be detached with a razor blade without leaving any permanent marks. You can eliminate any leftover adhesive residue with rinsing water – or, in the case of stubborn adhesive, with thinner. This stainless steel hook from Tesa is even designed to carry up to six kilograms (16.95 francs).

Various kitchen utensils hang on a shelf above the work surface in the kitchen: milk pot, pans, tea towel, etc.

Brushes, pans, tea towels – all these things can be hung up conveniently on the wall. If you want to avoid making holes in the tiles, use adhesive hooks or drill hooks into a shelf above the tiles, if there is one.

2. Stow away kitchen appliances

Modern household appliances are great. Some you need urgently, others you just want very badly. One thing they all have in common is that they usually take up a lot of space. The corner lifter from Schüller (available through Speck Küchen in Switzerland) lowers the mixer or cutting machine at the push of a button and raises it again as and when necessary. Cost: around 2000 francs.

3. Banish the extractor fan to the stovetop

An extractor fan is practical and even indispensable in an open kitchen. But it takes up a lot of space. That’s why there are fans that are integrated into the ceramic hotplate. This leaves space under the ceiling and on the wall to create more storage space in the form of wall units. Miele, for example, offers this type of system as an all-in-one solution: the TwoInOne induction stove with integrated table fan from approx. 4,500 francs.

Pasta is cooking in a pan on a stove with an extractor fan (TwoInOne from Miele). Next to the stove a marble countertop can be seen with chilies and pasta on it.

Make space on the walls. With an extractor fan that’s integrated directly into the cooking plate.

4. Opt for a fold-away butcher’s block

It works like a folding garden table and offers an additional work surface: the butcher’s block, a solid wooden board that is mounted on the wall and folds out when needed. This type of block can be used for almost everything in relation to cutting, shredding, kneading or cutting out cookies etc. The nicest butcher’s block is a self-made one. Dense types of wood like oak are suitable, and hinges and joints should of course be rustproof.

5. Make double use of drawers

SieMatic has reinvented the drawer, so to speak: in the upper compartment, which is the one visible initially when you open the draw, you will find everything you use regularly – cutlery for example. The “secret compartment” underneath has room for all the items you might not need for weeks at a time. Available in Switzerland from Blanco distributors, it costs between 1200 and 1500 francs depending on the model.

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6. Turn the kitchen sink into a work surface

If you have a small kitchen, it's best to ask the kitchen manufacturer whether there are any suitable chopping boards for the kitchen sink. These are available in various materials and are each cut to a precise fit, allowing you to create additional work space.

If you are redesigning a small kitchen, space optimization is even easier. The Blanco kitchen sink has three levels, for example. There is room for dirty dishes at the bottom, stainless steel rails are fitted in the middle for hot pans and pots, and at the top a mobile board serves as a cutting surface. The result? You can multiply the surface area by three. For about 1000 francs.

7. Tidy the drawers

The annoying thing about drawers is that the bigger they are, the faster they become a mess. The OrgaStore from Hettich is flexibly adjustable and keeps things tidy, even when you get rid of old pans and add new ones. The aluminum profiles with adapters are available in anthracite, silver and white and in various element sizes from 44 francs. The OrgaStore fits into a standard cupboard width but can also be shortened.

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