When designing a compact kitchen these are the 6 things I always include as an interiors expert

1.Two-tone cabinets

In a small kitchen, it’s easy to play it safe with neutral cabinetry, however, using two-tone kitchen cabinet ideas can take the focus off of how compact the space is and create interest instead. Keep dark colours to the base cabinets, where possible, and opt for a lighter shade for wall cupboards so the upper half of your space feels light and airy.

2. Feature flooring

Although larger tiles are recommended for smaller kitchens to make a floor look bigger, having a patterned design can also create a focal point that detracts from a low ceiling or narrow layout. Choose a grout that complements the tiles you use, making it less noticeable and helping to trick the eye into thinking the area is larger than it really is – or use a vinyl which will do the job for you.

3. Savvy storage

When space is at a premium it’s important to plan a small kitchen layout well and use clever storage ideas for keeping your kitchen neat and tidy – plus a well-organised room means you’ll be able to find items quickly and easily. Look at what you have to store, declutter any items not needed and then factor in everything from utensil dividers to pull-out racks and under-cabinet drawers.

4. Mirrored splashback

We know mirrors are ideal for reflecting light around a room and this can be applied in the kitchen, with a splashback idea that will help a small space feel more open. An antique-look finish, such as this one, will help add character, and the fact that it’s one continuous piece means it’s even more effective, with no tile lines to distract the eye.

5. Open Shelving

In a compact kitchen, wall cupboards can often block much-needed light and appear bulky. Instead, use wide shelves to store accessories or ingredients, a rail from which to hang pans and cooking tools, and even a wall-mounted magnetic knife holder. If you do opt for kitchen shelving ideas instead of cabinets you’ll need to keep shelves tidy being they’re on display, but it’s the perfect excuse to show off more decorative items.

6. Clever use of paint

There are many ways to make a small kitchen appear bigger, simply by using colour and pattern. Painting just halfway up a wall, for example, will create a horizontal stripe that makes a wall appear longer, while painting shelves or cupboards in the same colour as the walls help them blend in, giving continuity to the space.

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