It’s hard to find an apartment in New York City with a truly decent-sized kitchen, but luckily there are plenty of life hacks to help maximize a small space. The key, as always, is creative thinking and innovative storage solutions.

Follow the tips below and you’ll be whipping up a dinner party feast in no time! Just don’t count on having a sous chef… there might not be enough room.

  • Think wall space, not drawer space! Hanging pots and pans on hooks or a pegboard is a much more effective way to store them, plus it will give your kitchen a French-country feel. Be sure to contact your landlord before putting these up. It can be difficult to install on your own and can leave marks on the wall so you might ask for both his assistance and his approval.
Kitchen pegboard

(Source: Kate Payne)

  • Get creative with storage — your oven! If you suffer from a lack of counter space, store space guzzlers like your toaster or blender on top of the fridge, or the upper shelf of a cabinet. Then just take them out and plug them in as necessary. Never use your oven? (Who really does, right?) You can store tea kettles, crock pots and other bulky items in there too. Just be sure to remove them before pre-heating your oven in the off chance you ever use it.
  • Add floating shelves.  If you don’t have enough cabinet space, add floating shelves and embrace the fact that your glassware will be out in the open for all to see. You’ll love the easy access! Ikea sells the Varde shelf with five hooks for $39.99.  Again check with your landlord for approval and assistance. You’ll want all the help you can get because those pictogram Ikea instructions can be deceptively hard to follow.
  • Storage on wheels. A standing kitchen cart is a great investment as it offers more storage room and counter space in one fell swoop. Ikea has a bunch of affordable options, like the Bygel ($29.99) that’s on wheels and is super lightweight (below). Think your kitchen is too small for a standing cart? This one is only 23 inches x 15 inches so it easily fits into small spaces and gives an added prep and storage space.
(The Bygel cart from Ikea)

(The Bygel cart from Ikea)

  • Use your fridge. Bet you never considered your fridge to be an effective storage space, right? Magnetic spice racks, knife racks, and containers can do wonders for decluttering your kitchen. You can find great options online. On Amazon, magnetic knife racks go for $17.29. Spice racks go for $39.99.
  • Install a collapsible kitchen counter.  If you lack counter space, a collapsible kitchen counter is ideal. You can pull it up when you need it, and it can also double as a kitchen table. Ikea sells the Norberg model for $39. If you have some blank wall space or even hall space near your kitchen, this makes for super practical installation. Again, consult with your landlord before you start drilling holes in the wall.
Source: Ikea's The Share Space Blog

Source: Ikea’s Share Space Blog