Sunday, 27 January 2008

Teeny weeny English kitchens

Why oh why do most early 20th century English houses have such tiny kitchens?

I read through blogs and see some gorgeous family kitchens that I can only dream of having at the moment. For the past 8 years we have had to put up with... wait for it..a five foot by seven foot kitchen! In fact on the estate agents details it was referred to as a 'scullery' so as not to offend proper kitchens. It has a door at either end to make it even more awkward, one of which has had to be put on back to front so you can actually get in the room. Pete had to build a temporary wooden lean-to through the door at the end (the old back door) so we at least have somewhere to house the fridge!
The house hadn't been touched since it was built and had only been empty for a year or so, so everything was as it was..fascinating to think you can live like that if you have to.There were no electrical sockets just main lights and so much damp and ice it was warmer outside than in ,even the ink had run off the letters on the doormat.Sparrows had taken up residence in the roof and spiders were in abundance (eugh, shiver!). My husband nearly died when I said I'd found 'our house'. All he could see was the amount of money we needed to spend and all I could see was an old lady of a house desperately in need of a bit of TLC..well a hell of a lot of TLC! We had moved from a brand new house (which I never liked from the start, it was like living on the set of the Stepford wives) into one that was falling apart in front of us.. and boy, was it cold that first night!

We have gradually done bits and pieces to the house when were able to and now although it's small and in desperate need of extending (a failed business put hold to those plans) we still live in it and love it and more often than not moan about it. We're used to telling people when they look aghast at our tiny, temporary kitchen, "yes you can cook in it"...and in some fashionable circles you could say it's sort of 'shabby vintage chic'! (with a lot of emphasis on the shabby!)

I'd love to know if anyone else has a kitchen this tiny!


  1. Hiya,
    Well your kitchen may be tiny, but its so gorgeous! I love what you've done to best utilize the space...and all the lovely Greengate and other tin on the shelves looks lovely and charming!
    The tiny room in our house is the living room, we even took the door off to fit in a chair!I dream of a bigger room one of these days!

  2. I absolutely LOVE your kitchen, who says big is beautiful? The colours, the shelves, all those's gorgeous!
    We've finally got our dream kitchen, but were only able to thnks to the kind people at the "Halifax". Unfortunately we now can't afford to eat, great for the figure!
    By the way you're going on my faves list right away!
    Julia x

  3. ps. I'm very envious of all those glorious red polka dot christmas goodies, there's a bit of a spotty theme going on in this house at the moment!
    Julia x

  4. It may be small but its VERY perfectly formed!!! I LOVE your kitchen! (I must admit that the original kitchen to our house was small - 9' square.)
    Thanks for sharing your lovely photos - I must have another look now....

  5. It's tiny but is is just AWESOMSE! I love it. It has all the wonderful colors that I love, and the shelves are adorable!! Love it!!

  6. Love how you decorated you teeny- tiny kitchen.. cute blog I'll be back..Patty

  7. I love what yo have done with such a little space! I have some of those Worcester Ware tins too.I love them!

  8. Your kitchen is very cute.
    Ours is the same size, but in no way pretty. We a currently renting so can't pretty it up too much. It is brown with fetching early 1980's yellow tiles.
    It is very suprising to some people how we are able to cook in such a small space. But we do manage.

    I found your blog today and I am enjoying having a good nosy through.
    I have added your link to my new blog, I hope you don't mind.

  9. It's lovely. My DH is a cabinetmaker and he did the loveliest little kitchen that is 5-1/2' x 7-1/2'...and he made room for the fridge and a tall narrow pantry. I'll have to find a pic to send you. It's utterly charming and so is yours.

  10. Your kitchen is quaint and adorable. I am really enjoying the English blogs. I love the decorating ideas and all the great things you all find in the thrift stores. I am jealous!

  11. I like your blog. Its good pictures of the kitchen was really great. Thank you for sharing.

  12. My kitchen is tiny as well. Just like yours, the fridge can't fit. (Sadly mine only fits just outside the bathroom for some reason...) I have a stove, one sink, and three feet of counter. That's it. You can barely even stand in it to cook.

  13. This small kitchen in your apartment is just perfect! Everything is organized, and you've clearly maximize the use of the limited space. Everything is pretty and colorful, and that can definitely make for a lighter mood when preparing food!

    1. Claudia in the Sabina25 September 2012 at 20:44

      I had the dilemma of 15 feet by 4 feet. The space was so dark I had to turn a light on mid-day, and this with south-east exposure. My solution was to knock huge windows in, thus eliminating many possibilities of cabinets and shelves, but gaining a spectacular view of olive groves and vineyards while I cook.

  14. It looks delightful! We used to live in a smallish house but no, I had to have a big two-story. Four years later, I'd love to downsize. Never happy :)


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