Compact Cooking: 15 Modular & Multipurpose Kitchen Designs

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[ By Steph in Design & Fixtures & Interiors. ]

MOdular Kitchens Main

Most of us only use our kitchens a couple times daily, so why should they take up an entire room of valuable space? Compact, modular kitchens that can be packed away when not in use or expanded when you want entertain make a lot of sense, especially for the modern urban lifestyle. These 15 concepts range from space-saving wall-mounted kitchens for small spaces to countertop appliances that pack in multiple functions.

Outpost Add-A-Kitchen for the Office

Modular Kitchens Outpost 2

Modular Kitchens Outpost 1

While it was designed specifically with offices in mind, it’s not hard to imagine the Outpost modular kitchen in studio apartments, guest rooms and emergency shelters as well. The two-part system offers storage, individual ‘fridge cubes’, an oven, an induction tea set, a coffee maker and eating surfaces to keep all food-related functions contained in one space rather than spread out all over your co-workers’ desks.

nFridge Modular Refrigerator

Modular Kitchen nFridge 1

Modular Kitchen nFridge 2

Need a little more space in your refrigerator for temporary house guests? Just add an extra cold cube. The NFridge concept, created for the Electrolux Global Design Lab, breaks a fridge down into small cooling components that can be stacked on the ground or mounted to a wall to save space. It’s covered in a soft-touch digital membrane that’s resistant to dust and water, and uses magnetic refrigeration to produce cold more rapidly than conventional refrigerator technology.

Kitchen a la Carte

Modular Kitchens A La Carte 1.jp

Modular Kitchens A La Carte 2

Anywhere with plumbing and electricity can play host to Kitchen A La Carte, which breaks all the major functions of a kitchen down into small suitcase-like packs with wheels. These units can be pulled to a new location and quickly re-assembled.

Elements Modular Kitchen

Modular Kitchens Elements 1

Modular Kitchens Elements 2

Do you like having some shelf space above the stove for spices, or prefer to have your sink right next to the cooktop for easy cleaning? Electrolux Elements allows you to configure the various elements of a kitchen in any way you like, adding lighting, storage, cooking surfaces, refrigerators and other components as desired. The units draw power wirelessly through ‘powerboat’ technology supplied through the wall, which is supplemented with solar energy.

Accordion Expandable Kitchen

Modular Kitchens Accordion 1

Modular Kitchens Accordion 2

A space-saving geometric table hides far more function than you’d expect, stretching out like an accordion to reveal a sink, chopping board and storage for items like glassware and utensils. It takes up very little space when not in use, and many elements have a double purpose, like drawer covers that can be turned over and used as food preparation surfaces.

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Rooms on Wheels: Mobile Kitchen, Bedroom & Office Spaces

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[ By WebUrbanist in Design & Furniture & Decor. ]

compact modular rooms spaces

A step beyond flip-down beds and foldaway furniture, this series of modular rooms packs whole kitchens, bedrooms and offices into a highly portable form, so much so that they be bought online at stores like Amazon Japan and shipped right to your door.

compact kitchen in box

Consider the possibilities, too, for on-demand residential conversions: with these you can make anything, from a cargo container to an old warehouse, into an instant apartment.

compact office close up

Set on wheels and made narrow when closed, each room-in-a-box can be rolled easily through opening and navigate narrow corridors to arrive at its destination.

compact fold out bedroom

compact modular bedroom

The bedroom unit is the largest – it uses central breakpoints to allow overhead lighting as well as the bed and its supports below to collapse in half then fold up or down into empty spaces in the shell.

compact fold out office

The mid-sized office features interlocking solids and voids to maximize shelving and storage when open. Meanwhile, the wheeled chair below detaches from the primary structure on demand.

compact fold out kitchen

The small kitchen flips up and out to reveal a sink, work surface and hot plate at hip height with space for storage and refrigeration below.

modular moveable rooms boxes

Square footage is a serious commodity in cities like Tokyo and Kyoto, making the four-figure price tag for these units from Atelier OPA (dubbed Kenchikukagu) also a lot more palatable in the right urban context.


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Heart of the Home Laid Open: Intimate Kitchen Portraits

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[ By Delana in Art & Photography & Video. ]

1 kitchen portraits amsterdam

Would you ever allow a stranger to come into your home, open every cabinet and cupboard in your kitchen, and photograph whatever he finds? Artist Erik Klein Wolterink does just that, photographing the room that is often thought of as the heart of the home. He doesn’t romanticize the space, however – he wants to catch the everyday chaos that exists in most kitchens.

2 amsterdam kitchen portraits

3 portraits of kitchens

As he steps foot into each kitchen, he opens everything up – fridges, cupboards, drawers, pantries, ovens and dishwashers – and meticulously photographs everything. The camera misses nothing – not the full dishwashers or the foreign food items or the many jars of Nutella.

4 portraits inside kitchens amsterdam

5 kitchen portraits

After photographing every possible angle of the kitchens, Klein Wolterink assembles the photos into pieced-together portraits. They are patchwork quilts made up of different angles of different parts of the same kitchen. They aren’t simply straight-on pictures of rooms; they are surreal portraits, real-life tableaux in which we can see every single part of the room all at once.

6 portraits of kitchen contents

7 kitchen interior portraits

The photographs all come from kitchens in and around Amsterdam, a city rich with multicultural life. This multiculturalism is displayed in the objects residents keep in their kitchens: foreign foods, exotic ingredients, alien-looking tools. But there is something here that unites all of us, a type of universal humanism that pervades the way we buy, store, prepare, and eat our food.

8 pictures of kitchen interiors

Interestingly, Klein Wolterink doesn’t consider himself a photographer as such. He thinks of himself as a modern cartographer. Maps, he says, are not realistic representations but they make you understand reality. His photos are, in a way, maps to the human condition and our varying but connected lives.

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21st Century Cookout: 16 Modern Grills & Outdoor Kitchens

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[ By Steph in Design & Fixtures & Interiors. ]

Modern Grills Main

If you’re tired of the ugly gas grill taking up space in your backyard, dreaming of a luxurious outdoor kitchen, or just wishing you had a cool portable BBQ to take out to the park, here are 16 (more!) design-centric options. Ranging from mobile kitchen carts and clever fold-up grills to sunken stone kitchens with swim-up bars, these outdoor cooking setups will have you craving a stylish cookout in no time flat.

Hot Pot Planter Grill Combo

Modern Grills Hot Pot

Hidden within an ordinary-looking terra-cotta planter is a charcoal grill, perfect for the city dweller with limited outdoor space for cookouts. The multi-functional Hot Pot serves as a mini garden when not in use, reduces clutter and avoids the clunky eyesore effect of conventional BBQ grills.

Steel Bowl Pivot Grill

Modern Grills Steel Bowl Pivot

Another dual-purpose product is a fire bowl that converts to a barbecue with the addition of a hanging grill pendulum/pulley set. The grill height is adjustable, and the arm folds down small for storage.

Modern Wood-Burning Grill

Modern Grills Wood Burning

Wood-burning grills get a modern update with the Ascot by Cera Design, a column-shaped grill and smoker with a glass door that lets you enjoy the flames as your food cooks. It includes optional outer plates for accessories, side storage units and a swivel grill. It can be used as an outdoor fireplace, too.

Modern Spiraling Gazebo with Built-In Kitchen

Modern Grills Spiral Gazebo 1

Modern Grills Spiral Gazebo 2

Commissioned by a yacht captain, this spiraling outdoor kitchen is fittingly shaped like the hull of a ship. Made of pale larch wood, the pavilion contains seating for eight and a black kitchen with a brick barbecue.

Druida Barbecue Chars Food with Geometric Patterns

Modern Grills Druida

Charred steaks will be a work of art when cooked on the Druida, a striking barbecue composed of a steel bowl on a tripod and a geometric waterjet-cut grille. The design of the grille is inspired by druidic cauldrons.

Compact Outdoor Kitchen by StudioMama

Modern Outdoor Grills COmpact Kitchen

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Made entirely of objects and materials that can be found at a hardware store, this mobile kitchen by London designer Nina Tolstrup of Studiomama features a bucket sink connected to a garden hose, a chopping board and a small stove eye as well as storage space. Studiomama offers instructions to make your own.

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