What is the saying? You can’t polish a turd…. ???? or is it, you can polish a turd, but it’s still a turd? ???? This rental IS what it IS….. a big old turd. ???? But, we are making the best of it while we are here. I have found a few different ways to improvise for things I was missing in my old kitchen. So, I thought it would be fun to give you some ideas for extra storage in a small kitchen. If you missed the before and after photos of our kitchen cabinets you can check out that post, too.
This kitchen at the rental only has this set of cabinets. Nothing else. ????????♀️ Um… that’s not enough storage for me whatsoever. Not only are we talking about no storage, but the cabinets are SO SMALL that most of my dishes and cookware don’t even fit in them. Therefore, we had to improvise. Things like extra paper towels, and the items we buy in bulk are stored there. But for our dishes, glasses, and large mixing bowls, I brought in a large antique piece that was previously a store counter. It has 4 DEEP drawers that slide well so it’s perfect for that.
The drawers in the original cabinets don’t slide well at all. I think the sliders are all broken. So, that is a perfect place for my “junk” drawers… pencils, paper, a few tools, etc. I have this old spool drawer piece I found at a junk store for $25. It works perfect for our silverware. There were no silverware dividers that would fit this piece, so Deb ended up adding the little dividers for me. I couldn’t be happier. I have always loved this piece but really didn’t have anything in it.
I had a large pantry in the original House on Winchester. It was once a guest closet in the entryway but it was HUGE. We don’t do guests. ???? It made more sense for us to close that closet in the entryway and open it up to the kitchen and make a pantry. Well… again, this rental house has only small-ish cabinets that hold nothing. Rather than storing my huge cabinets in the storage unit, I decided to use them as my pantry.
The big green chippy cabinet previously held all of my white ironstone dishes. Today I use it as my pantry. I have all of my home canned items in the top and all of the other pantry items in the bottom. The big cabinet that Deb made out of two side-lights from an old front door used to be in my office. She calls it a phone booth because she thinks it looks like one. ???? I use it for my bakeware, instant pot, and an overflow from the pantry.
The only thing on this wall was the stove and refrigerator. There were no cabinets. I wanted something to put between the two appliances for my coffee pot. I was originally thinking of using a small dresser with drawers but I needed a large open space for my pots and pans. This old sewing cabinet that has one shelf works absolutely perfect. It holds all of them. My skillets are on the top shelf and the bigger pans are on the bottom. There was one problem. My little sewing cabinet wasn’t deep enough. So it left a space of about 12″ between that… and the wall. ????
That voided space was a NO BUENO. I had Deb attach a few scrap boards to the wall at the same level as my little sewing cabinet to make a ledge. It sits perfectly on the ledge and the sewing cabinet. This is where I store all of our protein drinks, protein bars, etc. We call that our protein station. ????
There was nothing above the stove on the wall and that can’t be. ???????? No…this rental house doesn’t have an exhaust fan. We don’t fry food a lot and we are very conscious about grease splashes, so it doesn’t bother us. And, no we don’t have a microwave. We sold our microwave when we moved to the tiny house 5 years ago because there simply was no room. We ended up realizing that we could heat up our food faster on a gas stove and it tastes better. So we never bought another one.
I needed something for my coffee beans and coffee cups since my coffee maker is right beside the stove. We ended up hanging this wall cabinet that Deb made out of an old window and some odds and ends. It was previously hanging in the upstairs bathroom at the old house as our medicine cabinet. (Yes, I cleaned it well… ????) It works PERFECTLY to hold all of our coffee items. So this is our coffee station.
We used to have an antique cabinet with a glass door in our old house that we used as a spice cabinet. We outgrew that. I already told you about what we think was an attic door from an old house. I knew the second I saw it that I wanted Deb to make me a spice cabinet out of it. It worked perfectly for that.
You guys have seen this a million times already. We took an old piano bench, cut off the legs, and made it into an essential oil cabinet. It’s the perfect depth to really hang anywhere. It fit perfectly in this spot in the kitchen.
And there you have it. ???? This is what I have come up with for extra storage in our small kitchen in the rental. I hope this maybe helps you look at some of your own items in a different way. Let me know what you think in the comments. And make sure to follow us over on Instagram. If you aren’t following along, you are missing out on some fun!