One of the simplest ways of "expanding" a kitchen is incorporating glass, which lets you see through the objects, thereby enhancing the feeling of spaciousness or what designers call "negative space." Try a glass counter or tabletop, or glass door cabinets. Glass kitchen doors, to the outside world or to the next room, can also visually expand the space. There is even highly reflective glass tile that can give your kitchen sparkle. Mirrors, in a backsplash or strategically placed around the room, also lighten up the look.
The homeowners replaced the awkward upper cabinets with shelving that makes the most of the kitchen's pitched ceiling. They also ditched the lower cabinets for freestanding components, including a stainless steel rolling island and a mango-wood Crate & Barrel console fitted with a marble top. A red Aga gas stove offers a serious upgrade over the old electric model.
The color of walls, appliances, counters, stools — even the dishtowels — can change the atmosphere and perceived size of the kitchen. Pastels or light colors, with good doses of white, reflect light drawing the eyes upward and make the room seem taller. But don't think you have to be a color chicken in a small space. Bold colorations can be very effective in smaller kitchens. How about some Porsche red metal cabinets with celery green walls and a banana-colored concrete countertop? That’ll get your motor started in the morning!
With thousands of online home listings at your fingertips, it’s easy to compare your home to the latest and greatest in kitchen trends. But that doesn’t mean that every buyer is expecting a brand-new kitchen. If you don’t want to go through the headache, time and expense of a minor or major kitchen remodel and there’s nothing functionally wrong with your kitchen, selling without remodeling first might be your best bet.
Since dimensions are diminutive, you may be able to afford a beautiful tumbled marble that can give you a touch of the outdoors. Of course, marble can be really cold and hard underfoot, but the impact may be worth it to you. Or try cork, which is the number one flooring used in industrial kitchens in the United States. You’ll have to make sure it’s properly sealed (water can make it expand), but it’s a beautiful choice. And you can feel smug about using a politically correct "green" flooring.