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Our apartment is fairly large… OK, it’s freakin’ big. Except for one room… the kitchen. The space itself is small, made to feel even smaller by a really bad layout. Had the rest of the place not been so ab-so-lute-ly perfect, the kitchen would have been a serious sticking point.

The sink and dishwasher are located so that realistically, if one person is doing dishes (or putting them away), it pretty much eliminates the possibility of anyone else doing anything in the room – including helping with the dishes.

kitchen

I chalk it up to the joy of urban living in a really, really old building. But despite the shortcomings, we manage to entertain large groups. Organization, carefully curated kitchen equipment and lots of experience make it work.

So, why am I writing this? It’s not to brag about my incredible kitchen management skills. Nope. It’s because I’ve actually run across photos that made me feel my itty bitty kitchen might not be quite so itty bitty.

Looking around for ideas for a piece on home decor, I came across a kitchen that was positively Lilliputian. And pink.

Petite in pink – from Apartment Therapy

Curious, I did an image search for tiny kitchen. Most of what I found were smallish kitchens that still looked pretty big when compared to mine.

A few though, had me promising to never complain about my space… ever… again. Don’t get me wrong, I expect that in a studio apartment but not all of these were in efficiency units. And some of them had me wondering how anyone could do anything in the space.

Yikes – from the NY Times

Retro and tiny – from Curbly

Itty bitty space – from the Arugula Files

But I think the winner for the itty-bittiest kitchen is NY Times writer Jill Santopietro – seriously, check out her video outlining the must have items for a small kitchen. It’s 11.5 square feet, and no, I didn’t put the decimal in the wrong place.

Obviously, she’s gotten creative and used space outside the kitchen for storage of certain items. Heck, we do the same. A convenient closet in the hall just outside the kitchen was transformed into a sort of pantry to hold table linens and all of those odd appliances we don’t use on a day-to-day basis. And we added metal shelves and a rolling cart to provide additional storage.

We’ve also gone the route of investing in restaurant-ware for dishes – they stack more neatly and easily, look less cluttered in the cabinet and make serving uber-simple.

And we’ve eliminated most uni-taskers and seldom-used tools. Sure, I have a rice cooker, but you won’t find any omelet pans in my kitchen. Generally, I frown on one-trick ponies. I also know what’s important to me… I can make coffee via at least four different methods (five if I want to put more effort into it), but do not own a microwave because I can’t justify the loss of counter space.

Proof positive that bigger is not always better… and I’m officially going to stop complaining about my lack of space.