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Small Kitchen Design & Elevations

At the end of the last kitchen post (7 kitchens that inspired my own), I came up with a list of things to include when designing my kitchen.


  • flat panel wood cabinets
  • skinny box open shelving
  • interesting but not obnoxious backsplash tile
  • white countertops
  • barely there vent hood
  • some painted cabinets

Next came the fun part, actually sketching out the kitchen.

Designing a kitchen

I did this forever ago now…seriously like a year and a half ago. Right in the middle of the time period when was trying out fake nails to make my fingers look cute, but before coming to terms with the fact that I’m completely incapacitated by them. Turns out I’m just not that girl. Now I know.

Anyway….the kitchen. It’s not huge and is kind of separated from the rest of the main living area in its own little bump out.

Designing a small new construction mid century modern kitchen

Big islands are probably the go-to design element for new construction kitchens these days, but my space wasn’t large enough for something like that.

As far as I’m concerned, when it comes to small-ish kitchens there are two options – tiny island or peninsula.

blue and white kitchen with tiny island


teeny tiny island in kitchen


Mid-century peninsula kitchen

Real Simple

small kitchen with penensulia

Instagram – @katie_at_the_crescent_

This was an easy decision for me….you gotta go peninsula. A peninsula provides more than enough counter space, plus it is a more traditional choice for a mid-century style kitchen.

MCM house floorplan

Once I had a working layout established, then it was time to bring it to life on paper. Here is what the space looked like at the drywall stage –

MCM kitchen design and progress

And here are the elevations I drew up.

Mid-century modern new construction kitchen design sketch
Mid-century modern new construction kitchen design sketch

Here is same drawing, but with my messy and misspelled notes for the cabinet maker (Uppes? Penninsula? So bad).

new kitchen design with notes

Did the kitchen turn out like these drawings? Mostly yes, but not 100%. Some of it I changed my mind on, and in a few places my measurements were plain wrong and things didn’t fit quite as anticipated. Anyway, we will get to all that.

In an effort to write shorter posts, that’s it for today. Check back in a few days when we talk about cabinets!

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  1. Hey
    I will have to update my kitchen too
    New floors
    New appliances and new countertop
    New sink faucet etc
    As to cabinets I am not sure which way to go……

    Keep and paint may be a soft green
    One that matches my tiled backsplash
    Or buy and just add new doors. I think I will go for the paint job?!?!?

    Then I want a small island with a 2 side overhang counter top for sitting and eating. It will take some planning. So I am following your ideas to help me out with my own decisions. Small kitchen as well

  2. Tiny islands make me eye roll so hard! Islands are not inherently wonderful – tiny ones usually appear to be actually in the way and not useful enough to justify their existence. Good choice with the peninsula here for sure.

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