Pop Culture

Joanna Gaines' Ingenious Hack for Making Your Kitchen Look Bigger

Image Credit: Courtesy of HGTV

Living in a big city means paying a lot for a small apartment. And as a person who cooks almost every day, the meager amount of counter space available in my kitchen is a constant source of frustration. Thankfully, Joanna Gaines — known, of course, for her uncanny ability to overhaul and redecorate homes — has the secret weapon to maximizing your counter space.

In her new book, Homebody, a guide to decorating your home, Gaines reveals her tricks for making for your kitchen look bigger than it actually is. As Yahoo reports, one simple thing you can do is clear the counters of all non-essentials (like spices, olive oil, and other condiments). You could do this temporarily, like when you're cooking a big, complicated meal, for instance — just stash all the ingredients that you aren't using in a pantry or a drawer so that you have more space to cook without being hampered by clutter.

However, Gaines actually recommends that you store anything that isn't completely essential out of sight, which would probably only work if you have a large-enough pantry, or a perhaps a big cupboard underneath your sink. That way, you can leave the counters completely empty, which will at least give you the illusion that you have the expansive countertops you've been dreaming of. As for those essentials that you can keep within an arm's reach? That's pretty much up to you, but perhaps just the salt and pepper — even better if you have stylish shakers — and a bottle of hand soap.

Gaines also says that using your cutting boards as trays for ingredients that you do leave out in the open adds a chic touch to your countertops. Arranging your essentials on these "decorative trays" keeps the countertops neat and makes you look organized without much effort on your part.

Thanks for the tip, Joanna. Now if you'll excuse me, I'll be in my kitchen doing a little redecorating.

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