Make Galley Kitchen Look Bigger

I have a very small galley kitchen. The stove and refrigerator are on one side with pantry cabinets on both sides, and the sink and dishwasher are on the other. The only countertop space I have is on either side of the sink. My dining room adjoins the kitchen, and together both rooms look like a bowling alley. How can I decorate these rooms to make them function better and appear bigger? --Mandy


Here are some tricks that you might want to consider:

  • In my old apartments, I used to do a lot of mirror magic by placing framed mirrors opposite windows to bring the view and light over to the other side of the room.
  • I also used to take small framed gold mirrors from say, a Pier One type of store and line them up under my cabinets in the kitchen just above the back splash. This reflected the other side of the kitchen and made it look like there was a pass-through into the other room beyond the counter.
  • I've also done plain mirror tiles in this area to open up the space visually.
  • If you have room for a very narrow (one foot wide) island down the center of your kitchen, this can become a valuable food-prep area.
  • Check your overhead spaces for room to put a shelf overhead around your kitchen. With either open bins or serving pieces you don't use all the time (and a plant or two), these often-wasted areas can aid you in adding function to your kitchen.
  • The Ultimate Kitchen



  • Find uniform casual trays to organize your counter merchandise like oils and vinegars. By containing these items in movable trays, the space feels more streamlined and the trays are easily moved for quick cleaning.
  • Lastly -- but most importantly -- paint the dining room! Perhaps a red ceiling and a yellow-gold for the walls. You can do it!
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