Low budget tricks to improve your compact kitchen

press profile homify press profile homify
The Stiffkey Blue Kitchen NAKED Kitchens KitchenAccessories & textiles
Loading admin actions …

Does your home come replete with a less than satisfactorily sized cooking space? If this is the case there is no need to fret, your compact kitchen can still boast serious sophistication, while still competing stylistically against any of its larger counterparts. Decorating your small kitchen can incorporate many different design elements, but doesn't have to cost the earth. With small kitchens a little goes a long way, and you can easily give your space a new lease on life with minimal effort. 

Today on homify we are going to be taking a look at some fabulously planned and executed compact kitchens that are versatile and efficient. Additionally we have compiled a short list of some essential yet inexpensive ideas that will improve your kitchen's practicality and style. Easy solutions such as minimising clutter will maximise your home's adaptability and capability, ensuring you create an enjoyable and flexible cooking area. If you would like to see some inspiring compact kitchens, simple yet effective DIY ideas, and handy renovation tips, then read on below!

Create a feature wall or update your splashback

One of the first things that can be done to improve a compact kitchen is to update one of the walls of the surrounding the space. If you don't want to make any permanent changes to the room, there are plenty of other options available. Consider wall coverings that won't damage the wall such as stick on tiles, faux rock fascia, wall murals, and wallpaper. Within the kitchen you can spruce up a splashback with tile stickers that will enliven any dull or dreary hues. 

In this example we see a stylish compact kitchen that has utilised an exposed stone wall to maximise the trendiness and earthiness of the space. Far less expensive than updating the actual kitchen, adding a feature wall or splashback can drastically improve the overall ambience of the kitchen.

Add some energising greenery

There really is no easier, simpler, and more effective way to boost the life and essence of your kitchen than with plants. Plants not only clean the air, they are extremely inexpensive and add a renewed atmosphere and ambience. 

Within the kitchen there are plenty of different options when employing plant life. You may want to pick something simple such as some flowers to sit on the window sill, or perhaps a series of ferns that will require little to no maintenance other than daily watering. Alternatively, you might want to give your cooking space a lively addition in the form of herbs and spices. These days there are plenty of different growers that produce UV light to grow herbs indoors. Practicality and style, herbs will transform your kitchen, as well as your dinner! 

Employ open shelving

When you want to update your small kitchen, less definitely is more. This means that by limiting the volume of joinery within the space you will open up the entire room. Perfect for small or compact areas, open shelving is a brilliant way to enhance and update your domestic cooking environment. 

There are plenty of types of open shelving available to suit many different kitchen configurations and designs, but we particularly love the one in the example above. Sleek, chic and effortlessly cool, this kitchen embraces open wall shelves to enhance its minimal aesthetic. The key to keeping your open shelves looking stylish is to thoughtfully consider the items you display and the ones you hide. For example, you may choose to keep crockery and glasses on display, but hide less attractive appliances, and other cookware. 

If you are considering changing some of the joinery or adding shelves in your compact kitchen, chat to a professional to get some additional ideas before proceeding. 

Maximise your chopping blocks

Solid Oak Chopping Board NAKED Kitchens KitchenAccessories & textiles
NAKED Kitchens

Solid Oak Chopping Board

NAKED Kitchens

Large chopping blocks are a fabulous low-cost solution to compact kitchens. Often within small cooking spaces it is impossible to find an area to prepare food, especially when multiple individuals are helping to cook a meal.

By adding oversized chopping boards that can be moved around, you will add easy preparation spaces. If you have a joined kitchen and dining room you can use your dining table along with a chopping board to maximise your food and kitchen efficiency. Additionally, large chopping boards will help preserve your worktops, ensuring you save money in the long run. 

Enhance your appliances

Normally it is suggested that one should hide appliances within kitchens, but in this instance it can be particularly beneficial to use your more attractive machines to highlight different spaces within your compact or minute kitchen. 

Consider purchasing retro styled appliances such as this groovy Smeg refrigerator, or brightly coloured smaller items for the countertop. Toasters, kettles and coffee machines are perfect examples of appliances that can exude style and enhance the design of your kitchen without breaking the bank. 

Purchase quality kitchen linen

Tea Towel homify KitchenAccessories & textiles

Tea Towel


Quality tea towels and other kitchen linen drastically improves both the visual appearance of a small kitchen, along with its versatility and efficiency. Within a compact kitchen every element and feature counts, even something small such as a tea towel will have a lasting impression on the overall appearance of the room. 

Invest in a set of stylish kitchen linens to improve the style and design of your space. Although you may be spending more than you normally would on textiles, it is a small price to pay for the overall ambience and air you will evoke. 

Add a rug

Finally, a low-cost solution to improving a compact kitchen is often adding a stylish rug to the space. Rugs are becoming more and more popular within kitchen spaces, and these days you will find numerous styles and designs that suit cooking spaces due to their easy-clean material and construction. 

If you have a less than attractive floor in your kitchen, a rug is another inexpensive way to ensure the room is bright, stylish, and inviting. 

We hope this inspired you to update and renovate your small kitchen! If you need some more encouragement, or would simply like to continue reading, check out: 6 Modern Kitchen Must-Haves

Do you have any additional tips for our homify community? We'd love to hear from you in the comments below!

Need help with your home project?
Get in touch!

Discover home inspiration!