Galley kitchens are a common feature in older homes, made popular in decades past for the efficiency of the layout. While they are making a bit of a comeback, many people still feel baffled by how to make this old-school design work for modern lifestyles and design.
If you are working with a galley kitchen and changing the entire layout is not part of the plan, we have some ideas to help you remodel your space into something you love, without knocking down any walls.
Benefits of a Galley Kitchen
While the open concept floor plan has been all the rage in recent years, there are some perks to a galley kitchen. These benefits are what made them popular in the first place. If you know that changing the entire layout of your kitchen is not going to work, don’t worry. There are plenty of reasons to love your galley kitchen:
- You can hide the mess: Galley kitchens tend to be separated from entertaining space by a wall, or even a door. Prepare to entertain without worrying about hosting your guests among the mess of your food prep.
- Move around efficiently: The famous “work triangle” in a kitchen is perfectly executed in a galley kitchen, where you can reach anything you need with just a step, streamlining the cooking process.
- The distinct place is easier to decorate: Open concept kitchens are almost required to be designed to match the rest of the living space, but galley kitchens can have a color palette all their own. Choose bold colors or a theme you love without worrying about it clashing with the rest of the house.
Galley kitchens tend to be small, with limited storage. This is one of the primary pain points for owners as they seek to rethink the kitchen space. Without making any major changes to the layout of the kitchen, you can maximize storage and prioritizing efficiency in the cabinets and avoiding any wasted space.
Consider if there is anywhere you can add additional storage, like a tall, narrow cabinet next to your refrigerator, storage benches in lieu of chairs around the breakfast table, or filling the space between your upper cabinets and ceiling with additional cabinets.
Lighting is Key
A common complaint regarding galley kitchens is that they feel dark or gloomy. Make sure you galley kitchen remodel features cheerful lighting, in the form of lighting fixtures with your preferred brightness and color, as well as the addition of natural light.
Natural light can be infused into your galley kitchen by adding a window, which comes with the added benefit of a new view to enjoy from the workspace. If adding a window will not work with your floor plan or budget, consider a solar tube. Solar tubes funnel sunlight through the roof rafters, similar to installing a skylight but taking up much less space and requiring a fraction of the cost.
If you can afford the minimal loss in storage, consider open shelving in your galley kitchen. By opening up the space visually, the atmosphere of the kitchen will change significantly. Open shelving double as both a functional space to store dishes, spices, or visually appealing dry goods as well as the perfect place to display decorative items that add design value to the room.
Galley kitchens traditionally do not include an island. If you wish yours did, consider a compromise like a mobile kitchen island with locking wheels. This movable piece can be used for additional prep space, a bar cart, or the perfect surface for hors-devours or charcuterie boards when you entertain.
Another kitchen island alternative that works in some galley kitchens is a peninsula. Offering many of the benefits of an island, a peninsula often suits the layout of a galley kitchen better than and island does, while adding storage and prep space.
For more information about designing your ideal kitchen remodel, contact us any time.
Additional Posts and Tips