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Small Spaces Big Ideas Designer Ann Hebsch at Supply New England in Falmouth (www.kitchenbathgallery.com) says she often works with homeowners who want the sophisticated amenities and aesthetics of luxury kitchens adjusted to smaller spaces, including condominiums. The key, she says, is finding appliances and designs that offer spatial solutions. The Kohler Smart Divide sink, for example, is a cast iron sink that features dividers half the height of those found in conventional double-basin sinks. Hebsch says that fitting a cutting board and draining basket atop the sink will make for less clutter and offer the homeowner more working space. Single-handle kitchen faucets with pull out spray heads also take up less space than traditional multi-hole faucets.

“I listen to what the customer’s needs are,” says Hebsch, who then designs a kitchen with customized space-saving answers for each homeowner’s needs. Manufacturers, she adds, are increasingly adding products with smaller spaces in mind. Counter-depth refrigerators sit flush with cabinets and microwave hood ovens are duel purpose when installed directly above an oven range, allowing for more open counter space. Islands can double as functional workstations and dining areas.

To achieve each client’s wish list, Flanagan crafts space-sensitive solutions from putting shelves above microwave ovens to designing small in-kitchen seating areas with streamlined counters and stools. “You’re looking for small space savvy,” Hebsch explains. Wall color, cabinet designs, and countertop surfaces can also offer the illusion of a much larger kitchen. Hebsch says that on the Cape, homeowners offer gravitate toward clean and simple designs, perhaps because of the natural simplicity of our seaside environment. One of the most popular hues by Fieldstone Cabinetry, which Supply New England carries, is Aegean Mist, inspired by the sea. Color choice is more than aesthetic, it’s strategic, notes the designer. “These soft colors are replacing traditional white, and clean, simple doors show these colors off,” she says. The opportunity to jazz things up in a small space, Hebsch advises, is with a customized backsplash or in décor details.

“We do a lot of white or off-white because it’s timeless,” explains Eric Leckstrom of Kitchen & Bath Designs Unlimited in Osterville (www.designsunlimitedinc.net). Leckstrom works along side his father Thomas, a certified kitchen designer (a certification designated by the National Kitchen & Bath Association) and together the two have a combined nearly 50 years experience in designing fine cabinetry and countertops for kitchens and baths. “A lot of people are surprised at the options you can go with for a small space,” Leckstrom says. “You can make space for nearly everything.”

Small Spaces Big Ideas
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Andrea E. McHugh, a former editor at Newport Life magazine, is a freelance writer living in Rhode Island.

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