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10 Awesome Tricks For Tiny Kitchens

Because small kitchens should never be boring, we've got some cool ideas for you; from crazy stripes to mini breakfast nooks.

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Photography: Michael Angelo Chua & Jilson Tiu (Main Photos)

The typical kitchen layouts in condo units and small apartments are the Pullman (one counter) and the galley (two counters facing each other), and those usually don't leave anything to the imagination. With only a few feet away from the dining table, and the rest of the house for that matter, owners usually just leave these kitchens alone. 

But you don't have to settle for a boring kitchen in a small home. In fact, a well-designed kitchen could serve as a focal point or accent in an open layout. Here's a roundup of some of the best small kitchen tricks we've seen in our home tours. You won't believe some of the DIY ideas they've cooked up!

Vertical storage + banggerahan


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Gallery owner Albert Avellana's kitchen in his midcentury apartment didn't have enough floor area but it does have a lot of height, so he maximized this with high cabinets and shelves. To add a bit of Filipino flavor, he installed a mini banggerahan (Filipino dish rack) to hold his glasses by the sink.

Blackboard paint makes your kitchen a work of art


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DIY maven Bien Po combines his two passions--cooking and calligraphy--in his condo kitchen. It may seem like a wild idea, but he covered almost every non-tiled surface with chalkboard paint; and these now serve as space for his calligraphy and for scribbling recipes on. 

A cute boatcabin theme through and through


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This Airbnb unit's fanciful boatcabin theme even extends to the kitchen! Shipworthy slogans are applied to the kitchen cabinets and subway tiles, and a lighthouse sticker was added to the refrigerator door as the final touch. (To have stickers customized, try La Deco.) 

Black-and-white stripes = black tie elegance


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Empire Designs proves that a small condo kitchen can still be elegant by painting the backsplash in bold, black-and-white stripes (from Boysen Paints) on the diagonal. The final effect is sleek, striking, and very elegant. Plus, the diagonal lines visually expand the space. 

An instant breakfast nook


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Designer Nikki Audine surprises us by actually fitting in a mini breakfast nook into this tiny kitchen by adding a ledge and stools by the window. Now you can have brekky with a view!

Where's the mirror?


If you look closely, there is a mirror on the righthand wall panel that separates the kitchen from the living area in this unit designed by Pam Tan. It's a visual trick that makes you think you're seeing right through the kitchen (making the space more airy-looking), but you're not. 

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All sorts of industrial magic


In this home designed by Lahubre, you can see all sorts of wonderful industrial-style details going on. The exposed metal pipes that continue onto the shelves and counter base, the rough brick walls, the wooden shelving, and the Machuka tiles all spell rustic charm. 

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Mail bins for catchalls


A cute trick in the same Lahubre kitchen: wire mail bins repurposed as utensil holders. Since these are wall-hung, they free up countertop space. Find similar at Anna Banana Rustics. 

Matchy-matchy grays


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Interior designer Tala Singson made the most of this 36sqm unit by keeping the kitchen in one single shade of gray; from cabinets to appliances. This gives the space a seamless and neat look.

Yes, a tiny kitchen can have an island


In the same kitchen, Tala opted for a customized kitchen trolley by Dekko PH since an actual range-oven couldn't fit in the space. A big plus is that the trolley can be pulled out to become an island. 

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