The Struggles of Galley Kitchen: 5 Tips to Make Galley Kitchen Bigger

Are you working with a galley kitchen in your home? Galley kitchens are characterized by their narrow layout and parallel countertops. If you have one, you know they can be a challenging space to work with. While they might not offer the sprawling expanse of an open-plan kitchen, there are several design tricks that can help make your galley kitchen feel bigger. 

With the right design strategies in place, your galley kitchen will be more functional and aesthetically pleasing. In this blog, we’ll cover some techniques to get the most out of your galley kitchens. At DeLeers, we’re all about effective techniques to transform the existing spaces in your home to maximize their potential.

What exactly is a galley kitchen?

galley kitchen with dark brown cabinets and overhead lighting

A galley kitchen is typically a small, narrow space with two parallel walls of countertops and appliances. It's a common layout in apartments, condos, and smaller homes due to its space-saving design. While galley kitchens are known for their efficiency, they can feel cramped and limited in terms of space and functionality. But not for long!

The Challenges of the Galley Kitchen

crowded galley kitchen with limited storage space

Limited Space

The most obvious challenge with galley kitchens is their limited space. It can be tough to move around comfortably, especially when multiple people are in the kitchen at the same time. 

Lack of Storage

Storage can be a major issue in galley kitchens. With limited wall space and cabinet options, finding a place for all your kitchen essentials can be a puzzle.

Insufficient Lighting

Poor lighting can make a small kitchen feel even smaller. Inadequate natural light and improper artificial lighting could create a dark and gloomy atmosphere.

Functionality Concerns

Galley kitchens might struggle with functionality. Cooking, prepping, and cleaning may become a chore when there's not enough counter space or the layout doesn't flow smoothly.

5 Tips to Make Galley Kitchen Feel Bigger

wooden shelves with plates and cups on them

Now that we've outlined the challenges of galley kitchens, let's explore five strategies to make your galley kitchen feel more spacious and functional.

1. Optimal Layout Design

The right layout can make a world of difference in a galley kitchen. Consider these layout options!

  • Single Wall Galley: Remove one set of cabinets to create an open space on one side, allowing for a more airy feel.

  • L-Shaped Layout: If possible, expand one end of your galley kitchen into an adjacent room, forming an L-shaped layout. This will increase counter and storage space.

  • Island Addition: If space permits, add a small kitchen island in the middle of your galley kitchen. This provides extra prep space and acts as a natural room divider.

2. Reflective Surfaces and Light Colors

galley kitchen with lit up white cabinets

Opt for reflective materials and light colors to create a sense of openness. A kitchen backsplash of mirrored or glossy tiles that reflect light may make the space appear larger. Avoid busy, dark, overly-designed backsplash tiles that may cramp up the space. White and light hues typically enlarge a space. Paint your walls and cabinets in light colors, such as white, pale gray, or soft pastels. Light colors are a go-to when visually expanding a room!

3. Strategic Lighting

Good lighting is essential in any kitchen, but especially in a galley kitchen. Try to avoid harsh overhead fluorescent lighting. Under-cabinet lighting can lend a particularly luxurious feel. Try installing under-cabinet LED lights to brighten up your workspaces and add a modern touch. This is an affordable solution that can really elevate a kitchen space. If possible, consider replacing solid doors or walls with glass ones to let in more natural light.

4. Vertical Storage Solutions

minimalistic kitchen with white cabinets

Efficient storage is crucial in galley kitchens. Make the most of your vertical space by incorporating open shelving, for example. Open shelves can create an illusion of space while providing storage for everyday items and decor.

Tall cabinets also achieve this goal. Invest in tall, floor-to-ceiling cabinets to maximize storage space for pantry items, cookware, and small appliances. You could even try hanging pots, pans, and other cookware in a unique vertical way on your wall if space allows. 

5. Minimalistic Approach

Embrace a minimalist design philosophy to avoid clutter and create a more open feel. The extent of your minimalism will depend on the size of the kitchen space you’re working with. Try the classic declutter technique: keep only essential kitchen items. Store or donate items that you rarely use to free up space. You can also choose compact and streamlined appliances to save space and maintain a cohesive look.

Personalization and Aesthetics

personalized galley kitchen with dark blue cabinets and wooden shelves

While making your galley kitchen feel bigger and more functional is essential, don't forget about personalization and aesthetics. Your kitchen should reflect your style and taste. To do this, look into stylish appliances and kitchen accessories. Maybe a bright red toaster is just what you need to elevate your daily breakfast experience.

As mentioned, choosing a unique and eye-catching backsplash can also create a focal point in your galley kitchen. Unique cabinet hardware and fixtures help bring that touch of personality to the space.

Transform your Galley Kitchen

Transforming a galley kitchen into a more spacious and functional area is entirely achievable with the right strategies and design choices. DeLeers Construction is prepared to design and strategize with you about how to completely elevate your kitchen space. A smaller kitchen doesn’t mean you have to sacrifice style and aesthetics. It’s all about creating a design that works best for your kitchen needs. 

We want to help you create a galley kitchen that not only feels bigger but also suits your personal style and culinary needs. Don't let the limited space hold you back! Embrace the possibilities of your galley kitchen and turn it into a stylish and efficient cooking oasis. Reach out to our experts at DeLeers Construction for a consultation.

Message or call our experts at 920-347-5830 with any questions about hiring professionals to build or renovate the kitchen of your dreams!