Kitchens come in all shapes and sizes, but creating a functional and beautiful cooking space in just 125 square feet can be a real challenge. This week’s featured kitchen shows how thoughtful design and smart storage can transform even the tiniest kitchen into a gorgeous and efficient workspace. Read on to see how the homeowners and their designer made every inch count in this petite but mighty kitchen renovation.

Overview of the 125 Square Foot Kitchen

This compact L-shaped kitchen is located in a 1920s bungalow in a trendy urban neighborhood. When the owners bought the property, the kitchen was dated and poorly laid out. They wanted to redesign the space to make it more open, streamlined, and suited to their modern lifestyle.

The goals for the new kitchen were:

  • Increase functionality in the limited footprint
  • Create a light, airy, and uncluttered look
  • Include space-saving storage solutions
  • Accommodate contemporary entertaining and cooking needs

To achieve these goals within a modest budget, the owners collaborated with a local interior designer who came up with a plan to completely reconfigure the layout. Key elements included a peninsula with bar-height seating, elimination of upper cabinets, a built-in banquette, and customized storage.

Despite its petite size, this redesigned kitchen offers smart solutions at every turn. The simple, minimalist aesthetic helps enlarge the feel of the room. And with every inch put to good use, the kitchen accommodates the needs of a modern family.

Detailed Look at the Kitchen Features


  • Compact 125 square foot L-shaped footprint
  • Peninsula with seating instead of full-size island
  • Banquette tucked into unused corner for extra seating
  • Sink located in peninsula with view of living area


  • Durable and easy-to-clean porcelain tile flooring
  • Large-scale tile pattern to give illusion of expanded space
  • Matte white tiles reflect light and enhance the airy aesthetic

Cabinets and Countertops

  • Upper cabinets eliminated for clean, modern look
  • Custom walnut base cabinets with integrated handles
  • Quartz countertops with undermount sink
  • Peninsula fitted with bar-height seating for casual dining


  • Graphic black and white tile backsplash
  • Adds eye-catching visual interest behind sink
  • Contrasts beautifully with the white cabinetry


  • Flush mounted LED lights provide task lighting
  • Pendant lights over peninsula add style
  • Large picture window above sink keeps room light and bright


  • Full-size stainless appliances chosen for durability
  • Slide-in gas range with range hood
  • Energy efficient dishwasher with delayed start function
  • French door fridge maximizes storage capacity

Storage Solutions

  • Base cabinets customized with interior pull-outs
  • Freestanding pantry unit for food, small appliances, etc
  • Shallow drawers keep items easily accessible
  • Open shelves provide additional storage using vertical space


  • Built-in L-shaped banquette in unused corner
  • Comfortable bench seating when extra dining space needed
  • Built-in cabinetry provides storage underneath bench
  • Can be closed off with door when not in use


  • Minimalist design highlighted with pops of greenery
  • Wood and black accents provide warmth and contrast
  • Uncluttered counters keep the look streamlined

Tips for Making the Most of 125 Square Feet

While a 125 square foot kitchen may seem tiny, this space proves it’s possible to create a versatile kitchen in even the most compact footprint. Here are some top tips for maximizing every inch:

Rethink the layout – As seen here, changing the configuration of cabinets, appliances and work zones can help improve flow and functionality. Consider different footprints like a galley or L-shape.

Limit upper cabinets – Removing upper cabinets instantly gives the illusion of higher ceilings and more breathing room. Open shelves or a few glass-front cabinets provide some needed storage up top.

Add a banquette – Tuck a space-saving banquette or bench with storage in unused areas for additional casual seating.

Install narrow pull-outs – Swapping standard cabinets for drawer bases with roll-out shelves and narrow pull-outs provides easy access to everything.

Use portable carts – Freestanding utility carts with storage provide flexibility and can be rolled in and out as needed.

Opt for bar-height seating – The perimeter gained by adding bar-height seating at a peninsula or island is precious real estate in a small kitchen.

Maximize vertical storage – Take advantage of vertical space with wall-mounted racks and open shelving for utensils, spices, etc.

Multitask appliances – Appliances like the oven/microwave combo and refrigerator with bottom freezer save precious floorspace.

Scale down appliances – Compact appliances like an 18-inch dishwasher or 24-inch refrigerator are better suited to small spaces.

Simplify the finishes – Stick with one finish for cabinets, like this kitchen’s white paint color. Simple backsplashes also keep the look uncluttered.

Let in natural light – Windows, skylights or glass cabinet doors help make a petite kitchen feel open and airy.

Style Ideas for a 125 Square Foot Kitchen

While this featured kitchen has a sleek, contemporary aesthetic, a tiny kitchen can take many styles. Here are some ideas:

Farmhouse Chic

Give a small kitchen a cozy farmhouse vibe with touches like:

  • White shaker-style cabinets
  • Butcher block counters
  • Vintage-inspired hardware
  • Floral curtains and textiles
  • Rustic wood cutting boards and open shelving
  • A farmhouse sink and industrial metal stools

Midcentury Modern

Make a small space groovy with retro midcentury details like:

  • Colorful retro laminate countertops
  • Slim-lined wooden base cabinets
  • Bold black and white floor tile
  • Pendant lights over the peninsula
  • Throwback appliances like a retro fridge
  • Curved bar stools and accent chairs

Urban Industrial

Exposed materials like metals and concrete make a tiny kitchen urban cool:

  • Stainless steel countertops
  • Concrete or brick tile backsplash
  • Black pendant lights
  • Galvanized metal shelves
  • Cafe-style curtains over the window
  • Salvaged wood slab on a rolling cart

Traditional White & Wood

Warm up a petite kitchen with classic white elements plus natural wood accents:

  • All-white cabinetry and marble counters
  • Butcher block island
  • Open shelving with wood brackets
  • Dark hardwood flooring
  • Wainscoting or shiplap on one wall
  • Antique wood bar stools

No matter which style you love, a tiny kitchen can be big on style with creative decorating ideas. Focus on choosing space-saving furnishings scaled for small spaces. Play with contrasts through color, textures and materials to give a little kitchen tons of visual appeal.

Tips for Entertaining and Cooking in 125 Square Feet

While diminutive in size, this kitchen is designed for real life – including entertaining and cooking. Here’s how to make the most of meal prep and guests in a petite kitchen:

Set up a portable bar. Bring in a small cart or table to use as a serving station for drinks. Top with pretty glassware, cocktail mixers and a cutting board.

Create a coffee zone. Designate counter space for the coffeemaker, mugs, sugar and creamer so guests can help themselves.

Make use of the banquette. Use the banquette seating around the table for cozy dining. Throw some pillows on top to create lounge-style seating.

Cook in batches. For larger gatherings, prepare parts of the meal ahead of time. Bake casseroles, cook meats, and whip up sauces in advance.

Simplify the menu. Focus on dishes that can be made ahead, require little prep, or just need reheating. Potlucks are great for small kitchens too.

Utilize portable appliances. Break out the electric grill, induction burner, or instant pot for extra cooking options. Use a rolling cart to store appliances when not in use.

Set up a buffet. Stage a beautifully styled buffet spread on the counter or kitchen table to keep the party contained in the kitchen.

Use serving pieces wisely. Opt for tiered platters, small individual casseroles, and tapas-style servings to maximize counter and table space.

Rely on paper plates. For low-fuss entertaining, use disposable plates, cutlery, and cups to minimize cleanup.

Stow clutter out of sight. Banish bulky appliances, kitchen tools, and countertop clutter before guests arrive so surfaces are clear.

Final Thoughts

This 125 square foot kitchen proves that a petite cooking space can still be ultra-functional and beautiful. Clever solutions like the built-in banquette, customized storage, and compact layout allow the space to accommodate real-life needs from casual meals to entertaining. While small, the streamlined design aesthetic and light interior palette give the illusion of spaciousness. For homeowners dealing with a tiny kitchen footprint, this makeover offers plenty of ingenious ideas for creating a cooking space that’s high on style and function.

Frequently Asked Questions About Tiny Kitchens

What is considered a small kitchen?

Kitchens under 150 square feet are generally considered small. Ultra-compact kitchens measure between 70-125 square feet. Tiny kitchens require smart layouts and storage solutions to function efficiently in tight footprints.

How can I make a small kitchen look bigger?

Opt for light, reflective finishes like white cabinetry, open shelves, and glass cabinet fronts. Remove upper cabinets for a more open look. Add windows and skylights to let in natural light. Install large-scale tile flooring. Avoid clutter on counters.

What storage solutions work best for tiny kitchens?

Some top options are pull-out base cabinets, drawer organizers, roll-out shelving, wall-mounted racks, narrow spice drawers, freestanding pantries, and portable utility carts.

Should I get full-sized or compact appliances?

It depends on your space. In kitchens under 100 square feet, compact 18 to 24-inch wide appliances are ideal. Larger galley or L-shaped small kitchens can accommodate full-sized appliances (30-36 inches wide).

What kind of seating can I add to a small kitchen?

Bench banquettes, barstools at a peninsula, cafe chairs, folding step stools, and pub tables all provide seating without taking up much room. Banquettes with storage underneath are great for tiny kitchens.

How can I entertain guests in a petite kitchen?

Set up a portable bar or coffee station. Cook parts of the meal in advance. Simplify the menu. Use tapas or tiered platters for serving. Set up a buffet spread. Rely on disposable tableware for easy cleanup. Remove appliances and clutter from counters before guests arrive.


While measuring just 125 square feet, this clever kitchen redesign shows that it’s entirely possible to make a tiny space both beautiful and highly functional. Thoughtful layout changes, space-saving furnishings, and customized storage allow the petite kitchen to accommodate everyday cooking and entertainment needs. Home chefs working with an itty-bitty footprint can look to this gorgeous space for plenty of ingenious ideas for creating their own stylish and streamlined culinary oasis. With some creativity and careful planning, even the smallest kitchen can be transformed into an inspiring and workable showplace.