A Tour of Our “Apartment Size” Kitchen

posted by Andrea | 06/19/2012

During our kitchen renovations this summer, we turned half our home office into an apartment size kitchen.

Remember where those big, beautiful barnwood shelves used to be?

Well, we removed the bottom shelf to make room for the refrigerator, a hutch, and a bookcase. The top two shelves store many of our kitchen necessities.

It’s REALLY small, and it has no running water — so it’s certainly not the most practical kitchen I’ve ever used… but it works. Plus, I’m just so excited that we were able to fit everything we needed in our tiny little kitchen! It will make our new kitchen seem THAT MUCH BIGGER.

Obviously, we store most of our food in the refrigerator, but then the snacks and pantry items are over on that black shelving unit. The red hutch holds all our dishes, select pots and pans, and plastic storage containers. It also provides a place for our microwave, a few cookbooks, and a bin for dirty dishes.

The drawer of the red hutch holds all our many utensils… and I won’t lie — I had a TON of fun figuring out the best way to arrange all the organizing bins so everything would fit :)

As for our new dinning room… we just head out the double doors to the deck right outside our office!

Eating outside is a fun perk (at least when it’s not raining) but cooking in the bathroom is not my most favorite thing ever.

At least Nora seems to like it!

We’ve been using mostly paper plates and paper cups to cut down on the number of dishes we need to wash, and we’ve been cooking most of our food on the grill and in the slow cooker (I’m sharing a delicious new slow cooker recipe later this week.)

Things are definitely more cluttered than I’d like them to be, but I can deal with it for a couple of months — especially since the end result is a big, beautiful, brand-new kitchen! Plus, now I only need to take 4 steps away from my desk to get a snack.

Here’s to a couple more months of craziness! 

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15 comments

  1. Laurel

    06/19/2012

    Cool set up! Kind of like “playing house”. I wish they had had those baby seats when my kids were little. Don’t roast eating outside today:) can’t wait to see the new kitchen. My guess is you won’t be canning this summer? Lol

    [Reply]

    Andrea Reply:

    yes, sometimes I feel like we’re “playing house” because it’s sooooo small! And no, I won’t be canning this summer because I was planning ahead and did a double batch of everything last summer! One less thing on my LONG to-do list this summer!!

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  2. Jen

    06/19/2012

    I was hoping you’d show this! It helped me get over the pain of not winning this weekend’s giveaway. lol

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  3. Leah

    06/19/2012

    Are you sure you just didn’t move to Europe? LOL Reminds me of a very compact kitchen from somewhere over there :)

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  4. Tammy Skipper (@Tammy_Skipper)

    06/19/2012

    This is also great advice for military families moving to Europe! The kitchens rarely come ‘furnished’ with cabinets so the bases often loan furniture like the hutches to help compensate, but it can be a nightmare trying to figure out how to make it work. I’ll be sharing for sure!

    [Reply]

    Kaui @ Thrifty Military Mommy Reply:

    I’m glad you said something about this, Tammy, because I sure didn’t! I wasn’t thinking of sharing it, but I sure am now!!! ;)

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  5. Kaui @ Thrifty Military Mommy

    06/19/2012

    How fun! I’m kinda nerdy like you too because I think it’s so much fun to deal with challenges that require downsizing like this. However, I too wouldn’t enjoy cooking in the bathroom either, yuck! But I LOVE crockpot meals!!! We have them at least 2-3 times per week :)

    [Reply]

  6. Rach (DonutsMama)

    06/19/2012

    We went through a remodel when I was pregnant. Not quite to this extent, but there were weekends when I had to wash dishes in the bathroom. Being pregnant & hormonal, it was so hard on me b/c I felt like it was the end of the world! But we survived, thank goodness. And after all that, we’re now moving, lol!

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  7. Sari

    06/19/2012

    I really, really like that hutch…REALLY, R.E.A.L.L.Y like it! Too bad I got married back in the day when everything oak was in..oak desk, oak table and chairs, gigantic ugly oak hutch and our house even has oak cabinets!!!

    [Reply]

  8. Ann

    06/19/2012

    We, too, made a make-shift kitchen during our renovation project. Oh, the memories we have!

    I cannot believe Norah still fits in her bumbo! Our 6 month old grandson outgrew it by 4 months. His thighs are just too big to fit!

    Have you seen the West Michigan online garage sale facebook “page”? Great way to get rid of things you no longer need and fabulous way to find the things you do need in a used version.
    https://www.facebook.com/groups/WestMichiganOnlineGarageSale/photos/#!/groups/WestMichiganOnlineGarageSale/

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  9. Katie

    06/20/2012

    Reminds me of our first apartment, quite cozy! Glad you made it work, and it looks like it holds about all you need….except for that sink:)

    [Reply]

  10. Debra Kapellakis

    06/24/2012

    That is a tiny little kitchen but you did good on how you arranged it.

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  11. Rachel

    07/02/2012

    Where did you get the red hutch? I am looking for something similar for my dining room.

    [Reply]

    Andrea Reply:

    Rachel, it was actually a really dumpy (and really ugly) cabinet I found on Craigslist. I fixed it up, added the chicken wire, painted it, distressed it, and added new hardware. It was a decent amount of work but it’s probably one of my favorite furniture renovations to date :)

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  12. Barb

    05/03/2013

    I am inspired by how well you organized your apartment sized kitchen. We are living in a temporary place with few cupboards and no pantry. Hopefully, I can find a sturdy, inexpensive shelf to help organize our dishes and food. Thanks for the great post!

    [Reply]

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