When it comes to Manhattan apartments, the city's famous high style is often crammed into a small space. Jacob Kindler's designs of tiny Manhattan apartment kitchens are more complicated due to the fact that he prefers to use full-sized appliances. The average size kitchen he works in is 100 square feet or less. The owner of New York-based D.S.K Group likes to use at least 30-inch-wide refrigerators and a separate cooktop and built-in oven. He says most Manhattan kitchens have gas lines so he likes to use gas cooktops. Even though his clients don't often cook, they too want larger appliances.
He says the No. 1 problem with clients is they think they can fit everything they want into this small space. With a small space, you have to compromise on many features, he tells them.
Kindler's first step in remodeling a small kitchen is to open it up to the rest of the apartment. “Most apartments have a small dining [space] so we use that and add a breakfast area to the kitchen,” he says. Though he creates an open feel, he still used products to delineate the two spaces. “There is a line even though the wall is open,” he says.
He also says designers need a different mindset when designing a small kitchen. “You need to think of every inch of that space,” he says. The smallest kitchen he has designed was a 39-square-foot room where he fit in full-sized appliances and a large sink.
To make a small kitchen look bigger, he suggests using the same material on all countertops and cabinetry. He also incorporates open shelving to alleviate the plain expanse of cabinet doors. He adds excitement with color and interesting back-splash materials like glass mosaic tile. “Mosaics give many options — you can use different grout colors,” he says. He recently began incorporating stone mosaics into his backsplash designs.