The Best Kitchen Island Ideas for Small Kitchens

No matter if you’re a Michigan interior designer, homeowner, or real estate agent, you likely know that the kitchen is usually the heart of a home. The kitchen is where people gather, entertain guests, prepare meals together, and bond. Installing a kitchen island will make the space more functional for all of those purposes, but what can you do with a small kitchen?

Fortunately, kitchen island ideas for small kitchens are plentiful. At Cabinet Creations, we offer outstanding kitchen remodeling in Michigan, so our professionals have lots of experience creating unique kitchen designs for small spaces that include islands. In the blog below, we share some of the best ideas to inspire you for your small kitchen island upgrade. 

Top Kitchen Island Inspirations for Smaller Spaces

Islands are wonderful additions to kitchens since they give the room an extra space to prepare meals. Kitchen islands are versatile and offer many uses, styles, and functions, so most kitchen design trends include them. 

If you have a smaller kitchen, a typical kitchen island might overwhelm the space and make it less functional. Still, with the right type of kitchen island, you can enhance your kitchen in the best way, making it functional for your lifestyle and visually pleasing. 

Before starting your kitchen design upgrade, consider these kitchen island ideas for small kitchens.

1. Vintage Aesthetic

Consider having a vintage-style kitchen island if you want the room to have a touch of old-school charm. The wooden island can have a high-end countertop like marble to contrast the color and vintage feel of the island with a luxurious material on its surface. Add to the island’s visual appeal and increase its storage by making it semi-open on its sides with a closed cabinet in its center.

2. Work-From-Home Station

With many people working remotely, there’s often a demand for a viable at-home workspace. Instead of creating a home office, you can convert your kitchen into a functional workstation with a new kitchen island.

The key to a work-from-home station/kitchen island is accessibility, which you can achieve by installing a compact stationary island with enough overhang on one side to accommodate seating comfortably. The island should also have electrical islands on both sides, making it easy for you to charge your laptop, cell phone, or tablet. As a bonus, you can use those outlets to run countertop appliances to prepare food.

3. Furniture-Esque Kitchen Island

If you want a kitchen island that doesn’t make your small kitchen look or feel too crowded, treat the island like a piece of furniture. Look for an island that resembles furniture with turned legs and cabinetry.

Since the legs will raise the island off of the ground, the kitchen will still look spacious. Plus, the cabinetry can be extra storage space for your kitchen’s countertop appliances, dishes, and other essential items you don’t want out in the open.

4. Color Accent Kitchen Island

If you want a kitchen island to enhance the room’s aesthetic instead of solely making it a functional space for meal preparation, get a color accent kitchen island. Pick a kitchen island on wheels or a fixed model in a color that flawlessly blends with the kitchen’s interior design.

A mostly white kitchen will look best if the island has a pop of bright color. A kitchen with a neutral color scheme could benefit from a kitchen island with a wooden countertop and a light-colored bottom.

5. Compact Built-In Island 

You can fit a traditional built-in kitchen island into your kitchen while accommodating the room’s smaller size with help from a professional remodeling company. The island could be narrow or short, depending on the kitchen’s size and layout. Dual bistro barstools and a pendant lighting fixture will turn the kitchen island into the room’s functional focal point.

6. Rustic Table

To blend traditional with contemporary, go with a rustic table as your compact kitchen island. This option is best if your kitchen already has plenty of storage space but lacks countertop space.

The table won’t have cabinetry under its surface. However, the openness between its four legs will help the room feel more spacious. Its design will also give the room a bit of character with its seemingly handmade, rustic charm.

7. Simple Table

If your kitchen is too small for a built-in island or a larger, rustic-style table, choose a basic freestanding table as your kitchen island. A long bistro-style table is narrow enough to fit two chairs or barstools while providing additional space for eating, preparing food, or featuring kitchen decor. Ensure the simple table complements your kitchen design by basing its color on the room’s palette.

8. Farmhouse Kitchen Island

A farmhouse kitchen island is a great addition to a kitchen design if you like natural elements with rustic features and open shelving. Match this aesthetic by installing a compact kitchen counter with a little overhang on one end to convert that part of the kitchen island into a seating area with two stools.

Connect the island to the rest of your kitchen design by matching its countertop to the material of your open shelving, which is common in farmhouse kitchens.

9. Mixed Material Kitchen Island

No rule states that you must have the same materials throughout your kitchen. Draw inspiration for your compact kitchen island by finding complementary colors and materials for other aspects of your kitchen. For example, if the room features light gray cabinetry or white countertops, your new island could have a black countertop to contrast with the rest of the room without taking away from its overall aesthetic.

10. Pull-Out Dining Table

Even the most compact kitchen island can transform the space in multiple ways. As one of the best kitchen island ideas for small kitchens, the pull-out kitchen island has a stacked bar that you can pull out when you need extra space. 

The island resembles a narrow bar or standalone shelf when the pieces are together. The included dining table fits snuggly underneath, with plenty of space for two stylish stools. The pull-out kitchen island is an excellent choice for small, narrow kitchens that occasionally need additional seating. 

Why Hire a Professional for Your Kitchen Island Installation?

If you’re ready to upgrade your kitchen with an island, you can either install the fixture yourself or hire a professional to do the job. Depending on the type of island you prefer, you might consider saving money and doing the work yourself. For example, if you source a bar or wooden table at a flea market or another shop, you can convert it into a kitchen island yourself.

However, seeking help from a kitchen remodeling professional with experience installing islands might be better if you want a custom option. This choice will ensure you get the perfect fixture for your kitchen, regardless of size, since contractors take accurate measurements.

Professional remodelers are also beneficial if your new island will include plumbing, electrical, or gas installations. Those installations can be too complex for homeowners to complete themselves. 

Call Cabinet Creations To Make Your Dream Kitchen a Reality

From kitchen island breakfast bars to wheeled stands with butcher block countertops, there’s no shortage of kitchen island ideas for small kitchens, including advice on “how big should a kitchen island be” to maximize your space. At Cabinet Creations, we dedicate ourselves to creating the ideal kitchens for homeowners throughout Michigan. Our design team and expert installers can provide custom solutions to revamp your space, but we also offer materials for DIY remodeling projects.

Call Cabinet Creations at (248) 618-3332 to request a consultation or more details today.

Kirk Richardson
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