How I Found More Kitchen Counter Space

What would you do for more counter top space?  When we bought this house, it only had 8 square feet of counter space.  That’s 50″ x 23.5″!! That’s not a lot of counter top space and when I look back at the townhouse kitchen and my old apartment, I realize that I’ve always lived in counter top space-challenged homes.

Well not anymore!…says the lady with the lime green kitchen;)

How I found more kitchen counter top space startd by moving the refrigerator and then filling that space with an upcycled cabinet from Stow and TellU

How I found more kitchen counter space.

Here is what the kitchen set-up looked like when we moved in this past August.

create-more-space-odd-shaped-kitchen

Now, this kitchen has an odd layout, kind of like a zig-zag and because of that, there were some unused areas that I honestly don’t think anyone bothered to try and make work.  I like a good space and storage challenge so, after some consideration, I was pretty sure I could create more kitchen counter space if I moved some of the components around a little.

Ideally, I want a dishwasher, but that’s in the future, so for now I wanted to target the area where I thought the future dishwasher should go.  My sites were set on the spot where the fridge was currently standing which is right next to the sink.

I measured the fridge area and then hit several thrift stores to find a piece of used furniture that would fit into that space.

old-book-case-new-repurposed

I lucked out with a 1990’s book case selling for $11.00, that although covered in veneer, it was solid wood underneath and quite sturdy.

I asked Ken to cut the bottom off the book case off, and of course he did, very reluctantly.  He wasn’t going for my “let’s add more counter top space” idea at all.  The man simply does not like change, but then again, my sister thought it was a bad idea, too. (We pretty much tell it like it is on our family.)

how-to-make-cheap-kitchen-island

Moving right along, once the book case was cut down, I asked Ken to add a piece of wood on top that would fit to measurements of the space.  He found a piece of Aspen for $20.00 at Menards that had a butcher-blocky look to it, so that is what he used.

He measured what the counter top size should be (with a little wiggle room), and the cut the board and attached it with screws from underneath the cabinet top. He also lined the wood top up with the front of the cabinet, so the cabinet would be flush with the other kitchen cabinets. He was left with a few inches of overhang off the back side of the cabinet.

This works out well, because the unit can be turned into a small kitchen island at a later date with a few more adjustments.  

How to create more kitchen counter top space by moving some of the appliances and adding an inexpensive diy cabinet from Stow and TellU

Next I moved the fridge to the opposite wall while Ken was working one Saturday afternoon.

We don’t have an outlet in that area, yet, so I used a good quality extension cord with the idea that if and when we are satisfied that this new arrangement is a keeper, we can put a new outlet behind the fridge.

How to create more kitchen counter top space by moving some of the appliances and adding an inexpensive diy cabinet from Stow and TellU

Finally we placed the book case cabinet turned “more kitchen counter top space cabinet” into place where the fridge used to be.

We now have 5 additional square feet of counter top space to bring us to a total of 13 square feet of space.  Not quite double, but more than half of what it used to be. I feel like I can call that a success!

How to create more kitchen counter top space by moving some of the appliances and adding an inexpensive diy cabinet from Stow and TellU

On the other side of the wall, the refrigerator is working very well in it’s new location. The IKEA hack potato bin is snuggled right next to it as a handy little place to put items down that are either going into the fridge or coming out of the fridge.

How to create more kitchen counter top space by moving some of the appliances and adding an inexpensive diy cabinet from Stow and TellU

How to create more kitchen counter top space by moving some of the appliances and adding an inexpensive diy cabinet from Stow and TellU

How to create more kitchen counter top space by moving some of the appliances and adding an inexpensive diy cabinet from Stow and TellU

How to create more kitchen counter top space by moving some of the appliances and adding an inexpensive diy cabinet from Stow and TellU

This is just a start of things to come for updating the kitchen.  The next step will be to stain, paint and seal the whole cabinet, but for the time being, I’ve covered the top with a vinyl table cloth.  Pretty fancy, right?

I’m still playing around with ideas for the zag part of this zig-zag kitchen, but other plans include painting walls and cabinets, changing the lighting and finding ways to create even more space.

If you'd like to create more kitchen countertop space, one way to make that happen is by changing the kitchen layout if possible. See how this was done with only a few changes at StowandTellU.com

Have you been wishing for more counter top space in your kitchen, or is your counter top situation a-okay?

Don’t be afraid to envision something new and try it out.  If it doesn’t seem to be working, you can always put it back the way it was.  That’s at least the approach I like to take.

PS: Please excuse the dirty dishes in a few of these pics, like I said, I’m really hoping for a dishwasher one of these days.

You can also see:

Townhouse Kitchen Update

 “Living with the wrong paint color” Living room

$100 Office Guest Bedroom Makeover

Basement Update with the Painted Open Ceiling.

~ xo Amy

 
   

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8 Responses to How I Found More Kitchen Counter Space

  1. Anne January 16, 2016 at 8:08 am #

    Sweet!! Great way to add to your counter space and gain storage as well! I like your kitchen layout.

    Have a great weekend Amy!

  2. Cheryl in Wisconsin January 16, 2016 at 10:14 am #

    Nice work, Amy! Way to put on the Envision Glasses!

  3. chris aka monkey January 16, 2016 at 10:32 am #

    you are so smart amy, good move and it looks like it can be a cabinet to house the dishwasher too xx

  4. sharleen January 16, 2016 at 8:35 pm #

    OO thats a really good idea Amy. Im amazed at the perfect piece from the thrift store you found.. How awesome is that. well done. Your thrift stores there are great.. much better than the ones here.. I used to have so much fun in them . 🙂 It looks perfect for your spot.

  5. Wendi @ H2OBungalow January 19, 2016 at 8:00 am #

    I have no doubt you are LOVING the extra space you created! That was brilliant. I completly feel your pain with a small amount of counter space. We had the same issue, and I rearranged everything and put in an island too. It’s been a lifesaver. Great job!!

  6. Sherry January 20, 2016 at 9:59 am #

    Awesome!!! I love the new layout Amy! You are so smart. I love the island and the fridge across the way balances out the kitchen. GREAT JOB!

  7. Feral Turtle January 27, 2016 at 7:18 am #

    Wow you made the right choice Amy! Your kitchen looks so much bigger too!! I was just at your Valentine jar post and loved them (so cheery) and then I saw a kitchen link. I am getting so far behind I will be first soon…:)

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