20 Ideas of Small Open Kitchens (1)

When you receive a lot, a welcoming and practical living room, that changes everything. And for that, the kitchen open to the living room is ideal. You can interact with your guests while putting the finishing touches to the small dishes that will be served to them. Semi-open partition, counter, bar or island, there are a thousand ways to organize a convivial kitchen. Discover our selection of smart ideas for entertaining family and friends as often as you want.

1. A well-thought-out location

A well-thought-out location (1)

The perfect shape for a small kitchen: the layout in I. This makes it possible to use all the available surface, namely a complete wall, an alcove, and a good part of the ceiling height, when the width of the room is 1.50 m or less. A perfect configuration for micro-kitchens, therefore, but also so-called “hallway” kitchens, which are long and narrow.

2. Optimized storage

Optimized storage (1)

Even (and especially) in a small kitchen, storage should remain a priority. We are therefore betting on smart furniture, which makes it possible to free up storage areas from vases without mobilizing m2, like the Lumina kitchen by Ixina. With its “large volume” option, it has all the storage space and everyday equipment, with 10% more storage available compared to classic size furniture.

We think in particular of wall units and columns which offer a multitude of practical and functional solutions to optimize the smallest available space. They are fitted out to a height of 2 m20 at most, for easy access. Available in four different facade colors and open to the rest of the house, the Lumina kitchen has low cabinets with drawers and multiple tall storage units. The icing on the cake, its snacking area can be transformed into a worktop as needed.

3. Smoother movements

Smoother movements (1)

Optimizing a small kitchen also means planning its layout according to movements in the room, which must be made as fluid as possible. We therefore anticipate the location and place of furniture in the kitchen according to the circulation corridors. For example, we ensure that the main activity areas (the hobs, the sink and the refrigerator, the famous “activity triangle”) are not too far from each other and at a rather equal distance. Finally, we also avoid placing the cooking plates in the corners of the room.

4. Elements at the right height

Elements at the right height (1)

Another rule to follow to organize your small kitchen well: think about the height of the worktops and other retractable trays. For example, the worktop must be at waist height (between 85 and 95 cm) so that the user reaches the bottom of the sink without bending over. Likewise, the oven must be at eye level and a bar shelf at elbow height (between 110 and 115 cm). Finally, to avoid bumping into the extractor hood, the latter must be about 60 cm above the plates.

5. Adequate lighting

Adequate lighting (1)

In a small kitchen, you have to be particularly vigilant about the lighting, especially as the recesses left in the shade visually make the room smaller. Our advice: first plan a general lighting (spotlights or broad spectrum suspension), combined with occasional lighting placed above the activity areas (central island, work plan, etc.). Allow 400 lux minimum for this room dedicated to the preparation of meals. As in the dining room, good color reproduction is essential for simmering and / or enjoying good meals! So get cold-tinted bulbs, with a CRI of 90, capable of restoring the color of food, without filter.

6. With a central island

With a central island (1)

The central island is the secret of a convivial kitchen . All it takes is an island for everyone to come together when preparing the meal, during or even after. With it, you can be sure that the meeting point in the kitchen is clearly identified!

In this kitchen, the island is really the heart of the kitchen since the cooking area is there. Treated in monochrome , the kitchen nevertheless incorporates red elements that make the link with the living room. This completely open kitchen is therefore the perfect place to live and cook together, with the children during the week and with friends in the evening.

On this island, you can cook while chatting with your guests . Moreover, the island has drawers which also open on the living room side. A way of composing the island as a link between the two spaces and not as a limit.

7. The island to take meals

The island to take meals (1)

Sometimes the island even becomes the dining area . With a few stools or high chairs , the place quickly became the place of preparation and tasting at the same time. It’s the perfect combination for a relaxed lifestyle where meals are taken as you prepare …

In this kitchen with minimalist decor, the island has a dual function. On the stack side, the cooking area allows you to prepare delicious meals. On the front side, two people can be comfortably seated for a quick bite to eat or a shared drink.

8. Arrangements for a good reception

Arrangements for a good reception (1)

In a kitchen, there are 3 key zones : the sink , the cooking zone and the cold zone . When we cook a lot (which is the case when we receive a lot), it is a question of rationalizing the location of the 3 zones to avoid pacing constantly.

In this rather large living room, the kitchen has been brought together in a compact space . The result is great efficiency when it comes time to cook. And for conviviality, the kitchen is open to the main room, close to the dining table. An ideal configuration to enjoy the evening with your guests and prepare the meal at the same time.

9. U-shaped kitchen

U-shaped kitchen (1)

In this U- shaped kitchen , the large worktops make you want to cook. Good thing, we can all cook together . And since there is space between the 3 key zones, the different cooks do not step on each other. The large counter delimits the kitchen and allows whoever has to stay behind the stove to enjoy the assembly.

10. Islands that structure the space

Islands that structure the space (1)

The island, much more than a piece of furniture, often becomes an architectural element of the kitchen. It structures the space and transforms the circulation areas of the kitchen. Well thought out, the island or the bar can even make all the originality of a kitchen.

Do you find that eating in the same place as you cook is not a good idea? In this case, opt for a multi-storey island. Thus, the meal area is clearly delimited from the preparation area. We can talk to each other and be together without mixing up the plates and cutting boards.

11. A small kitchen for entertaining

A small kitchen for entertaining (1)

You don’t need thousands of square meters to receive your loved ones with dignity. In a small, well-appointed kitchen , you can easily accommodate a few friends for a drink or dinner, without taking days to tidy everything up. The proof with these two very different cuisines .

The U-shaped layout is the one that allows to have a maximum of storage and work surfaces with equal surface. This is the winning bet of this compact kitchen whose island transforms into a dining area when you have guests. A few stools or high chairs are enough to switch to ” reception ” configuration.

12. Ideas for opening up the kitchen to the living room

Ideas for opening up the kitchen to the living room (1)

The cook locked behind their stove while everything is going on in the dining room, how sad! With the open kitchen, you can enjoy the evening while managing the meal in the kitchen. A real comfort for those who receive often.

This partition does not lack personality. It visually delimits the kitchen from the living room but its openwork geometric shapes ensure that conversations are not lost, even when putting the finishing touches on small verrines in the kitchen.

With this sliding door, open or closed, the choice is yours. When closed, the door hides the mess and prevents odors from spreading. When it is open, you can move between the kitchen and the living room easily. Ideal when receiving guests!

13. A well-defined kitchen area

A well-defined kitchen area (1)

Sometimes all it takes is a play of colors or a cleverly crafted floor to delimit the kitchen space without creating a clean partition. Here are two clever ideas to give the kitchen its place in an open space.

Open yes, but clearly demarcated . This resolutely green kitchen with its furniture and the tiling that covers the floors and walls ends where the wood begins. The block that delimits it extends to the wall, the floor and the ceiling. It may be open, but this kitchen clearly tells you when you come in and when you leave.

14. A total kitchen-living look

A total kitchen-living look (1)

So that your guests feel welcome in the living room as in the kitchen, the good idea is to create the same decorative atmosphere in both rooms. The same style continues in both rooms for maximum conviviality.

On the menu, the industrial spirit! Unfinished wood, black metal and a mix of open and closed storage, here are the ingredients of this large open room which also includes the kitchen. The result is a welcoming space where you can navigate fluidly between the kitchen and the living room.

15. A contemporary kitchen opening onto a refined living room


In a studio or in a small living room, this open kitchen will seduce you with its graphic design. The space here is delimited by the false ceiling on several levels. We like the clever mix of shapes, materials and colors. See the do’s and don’ts of an open kitchen layout.

16. Small open kitchen with baroque accents

Small open kitchen with baroque accents (1)

We present here a kitchen that we found very original with its chrome finishes. Open to the living room, it does not take up much space thanks to its L-shaped configuration.

17. Open kitchen with industrial and modern accents

Open kitchen with industrial and modern accents (1)

This kitchen open to the living room has been fitted out in a Loft style. We find there the subtle mix of materials: wood, aluminum, exposed bricks.

18. Small and practical U-shaped kitchen open to a contemporary living room

Small and practical U-shaped kitchen open to a contemporary living room1 (1)

This small open kitchen has been designed with the aim of making the circulation space between the living room and the kitchen more fluid . It is perfect even for the smallest rooms. Very design, it does not lose functionality and adapts to the modern lifestyle.

19. Small kitchen where the kitchen faces the entrance and also serves as a dining room

Small kitchen where the kitchen faces the entrance and also serves as a dining room (1)

If you like the Scandinavian look , you will be charmed by this “black and white” kitchen. It takes up very little space and offers a counter that can be used as a dining area.

20. Contemporary style open kitchen in dark brown tones

Contemporary style open kitchen in dark brown tones (1)

Here is a designer kitchen that will appeal to those who like clean lines. The designer took care not to install handles on the furniture to further emphasize the minimalist aspect of the whole.