Before and After Kitchens

Small-Kitchen Makeover

Before, Sarah and John's small Brooklyn kitchen could be used only for cooking. Now four people can dine comfortably thanks to smart storage and better use of available space.

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Dead space near the apartement's entry door became an opportunity to add more open storage.

Since the kitchen is located just a few feet from the entrance to the apartment, we decided to use dead space near the door as an opportunity to add more open storage for everyday items such as cereal bowls, water glasses, coffee cups and bottled drinks. To create something low-cost with a designer look, we used basic plumbing supplies and darkly stained pine, resulting in somewhat of a rustic farmhouse aesthetic. Dan measured the space, then attached threaded pipe, flanges, elbows and nipples together, and screwed the flanges to planks of pine that were cut with a circular saw and assembled as shelving boxes. Once the boxes were secured into studs, we were able to move approximately three cabinets' worth of items into the new open shelving.

The final step in the kitchen's design update was employing space-saving tricks to the cabinets and countertops. Since the kitchen already had integrated wine storage, and coffee in the mornings is equally as important to Sarah and John as wine over dinner with friends, we integrated space for coffee cups by mounting an extendable coffee cup holder over the sink, just a few inches from the coffee maker. With the coffee cups out of the cabinets, room was instantly added for Orly's feeding supplies.

Thanks to space-saving items -- from spice jars with chalkboard exteriors to paper towel holders that attach to the tops of cabinet doors -- Sarah and John now have a place for everything and everything in its place.

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