When it comes to small kitchens, the name of the game is storage, storage, storage … and open shelving kitchenlight. For homeowners who don’t have the stomach – or the budget – for a full-blown reno, here are some tips to create space, or at least the illusion of more space.

1. If possible, extend upper cabinets all the way to the ceiling. Cabinetry that hits the ceiling helps create a feeling of more space.

2. Use glass front upper cabinets for the illusion of more light and space. If replacing cabinet doors isn’t in the budget, consider facing at least two doors with mirrors; the glass reflects light back out into the room.

3. Installing a tile back splash on the diagonal creates the illusion of more space because the tiles will look larger than they are. Mirror is also a great choice for a back splash because it not only bounces light back in the room, it’s easy to clean.

4. Let in the light by keeping window sills free of clutter and using light fabrics for window coverings. Using under-cabinet lighting is also a great tool for making a small kitchen appear larger.

5. Open shelving or creating the look of open shelving by removing upper cabinet doors takes away the “heaviness” of cabinetry for a lighter, brighter kitchen.

6. Choosing lighter paint colors can also go a long way in expanding a kitchen. Dark colors have their place, but smaller kitchens should be bright not only to avoid feeling closed in but also to help with food preparation.

7. Use wiring shelving units inside shelves to double the amount of storage space. Smartly stacking plates, bowls and mugs can consolidate and expand storage at the same time.