26.04.2021

You don’t need acres of space in order to extend your kitchen. Quite often, a narrow side-return or modest patch of land is enough to provide valuable space for your kitchen to extend into (as long it complies with rules and regulations).

While many of us dream of a cavernous kitchen area, a small extension is more than sufficient in most cases; even with a limited space, you can create a bijou kitchen extension bursting with character, functionality, and style. To show you how, here are some tips on how to maximise the space available to you, alongside some inspiration taken from previous Plus Rooms projects. 

Small extension design ideas

There are many design tricks to help you overcome limitations of space and create a kitchen that looks and feels larger than it actually is.  

A considered use of colour is one of these. By keeping to a clean, neutral palette, for instance, you allow light to ricochet around the room and create the impression of space. Colours such as white, grey, and clay provide a background for splashes of vibrancy elsewhere without creating a ‘cluttered’ feel. 

Another way to maximise a limited area is by installing suitably-designed furniture and appliances. Cabinets, cupboards, and shelves can all be positioned in such a way as to optimise the flow of a kitchen; when kept parallel to walls, for instance, they increase the amount of functional floor space available. 

When paired with appropriate lighting and mirrors, furthermore, your kitchen fittings can enhance the illusion of space within your kitchen.  

Leaders in luxury design

At Plus Rooms, we offer a wide range of modern, bespoke design ideas and can organise everything from planning permission to a temporary kitchen while work is carried out. Here’s how we helped some of our clients transform their homes with statement small kitchen extension designs to suit their unique styles.

Bold and urban chic

We achieved this modern, urban style by extending the kitchen into the side return, making ample space for this family in East Dulwich.

The new timber-framed mono-pitched roof combined with dark walls and cabinets creates a bold, authentic appeal, while Crittall-style sliding doors and windows offer brightness and gorgeous views of the garden. An island adds a preparation area, while a skylight floods the space with even more light, and continuous flooring from inside to out gives the appearance that the kitchen extends straight into the garden.  

A minimal space for socialising 

We aimed to create a spacious, stylish kitchen extension as the house’s social hub for this family. We extended into the side return, making room for modern Crittall-style doors that extend full width across the back wall to the garden.

The continuation of concrete style flooring makes the space feel larger and brings the outside in, while frameless skylights makes this once narrow kitchen appear open and bright. Finally the grand, central island offers more storage and preparation space, while becoming a stand-out feature.

Rustic and arty

We transformed this kitchen area with just a small side return extension, creating a warm, rustic retreat which really forms the heart of the home. It is a fantastic example of how narrow kitchen extension ideas can entirely reshape your home.

With skylights along the pitched extension roof and bifold doors at the back of the property, there is plenty of light. Then luxury design features, such as an exposed brick wall, herringbone wood tiling and rich navy cabinets add a final flair. With an island separating the kitchen and living space and only light shelving higher up and cabinets lower down, we successfully create a sense of space.

Design your dream kitchen

Regardless of how much space you have available, a kitchen extension will help you to make the most of it. By extending into your side return or garden, you can increase the size of your kitchen and refresh the feeling of your home. And if the above projects are anything to go by, even the smallest of spaces can significantly improve your property. 


Plus Rooms is a family-run design and build company dedicated to transforming homes in and around London. Whether you’re looking to extend your kitchen or convert your loft, our expert team takes care of the entire process, from planning permission right through to completion. If you’re interested in finding out more, take a look at our past projects, or feel free to get in touch.