5 Steps Of Successful Designing Galley-Style Kitchens Layouts

5 Steps Of Successful Designing Galley-Style Kitchens Layouts

When you think of kitchens, the least desired layout is often thought to be the galley-style, seen most popularly in apartments, condos, and smaller homes.  Because of the long and sometimes narrow layout, they’re usually thought to be non-functioning and corridor-like.

But like all kitchens, the layout of the Kitchen Work Triangle (refrigerator, stove, and sink) is key to creating a well-designed and useful space.  When properly layed out, the caboose style can actually function better than an open style because cabinetry space is being better utilized.

1. Good Lighting For Galley Style.

Through natural light or proper artificial lighting, creating a bright and airy space is important for a cook room to feel as large and open as possible.    The most ideal layout would be to incorporate a window in the center of the caboose above the sink.  If that’s not possible, a window at one end perhaps near the seating area will still visually creates a larger environment.

If a window is totally “out of the question”, then it’s key to install lighting that is cleverly placed to illuminate the cabinets, work surface(s), and floor.  Decorative fixtures will add intrique and style to the space, but hi-hats on the ceiling and task lighting under the cabinets are most important for creating a bright cook-galley that is both aesthetically pleasing and functional.

This is sample for good galley style kitchen lighting
This Is Sample For Good Galley Style Kitchen Lighting.

Windows above the sink area and in the dining space at the end create a light and bright feeling throughout this galley kitchen. (Image via Traditional Home)

Another choise of good galley style kitchen lighting
Another Choise Of Good Cook-galley Lighting.


The bright light from the end window shines through the entire room making it airy and inviting.  Additionally, the upper cabinets have a mesh face which incorporate a more open feel.  Tall cabinets are included on the left side, which heightens the room and brings the eye up.  And a large open area with textured tile surround the large oven.  (Image Via The Kitchn)

2. Use Light Colors For Galley Style Kitchens.

I’m a huge fan of color and rarely think that it’s best to stick with white, BUT with cook rooms I’m making an exception.  When designing a cook-galley style where the space is narrow, it’s best to use white or light colored cabinets.  Accents of color can be introduced, but because the cabinetry usually takes up 80-95% of the wall surface, your space will feel largest when it’s lighter in color.

Good color choise is very important for galley style kitchen
Good Color Choise Is Very Important For Caboose Style.


When designing a galley room, allow a minimum of 3 feet between the cabinets, yet 4′ or more would be ideal to minimize congestion. (Image via This Old House)

3. Add Useful And Right Accents.

Since the main color of a galley kitchen space would be best in white or light colors, adding accents of color, pattern, and/or texture, are great ways to add in touches of your personal taste and style.  By using a bold rug, contrasting wallpaper, or an exciting light fixture, a small space still can be functional, yet interesting.

Some accents in design of galley style kitchen is good idea
Some Accents In Design Of Galley Style Kitchen Is Good Idea.

A bold rug and light blue colored walls creates for an inviting galley kitchen space. (Image via House Beautiful)

If your galley style kitchen have bad natural lighting - add some accents
If Your Galley Style Kitchen Has Bad Natural Lighting – Add Some Accents.


A dynamic geometric wallpaper in blue and white is a beautiful and striking accent to the white cabinets in this cook room space.  (Image via Hampton Toes)

This great sample shows how to add accents in your galley style kitchens designs
This Great Sample Shows How To Add Accents In Your Designs.


In a small kitchen, use simple cabinetry that elongates the space.  Maximize your space and storage abilities by incorporating high cabinets that reach the ceiling. (Image via Lonny Magazine)

Use Cabinerty In Your Caboose Style Kitchen Designs.
Use Cabinerty In Your Caboose Style Kitchen Designs.


Consider a strong carpet or tile pattern in the kitchen that leads to the next space.  It will give visual interest to the space and connect it to the adjoining room (image source unknown).

4. Incorporate Smart Storage Solutions.

Because of the limited space in a cook room, unique storage solutions are needed to create a functioning hub of the home.  A kitchen of this style will need extra thought during the planning stages, but will be well worth it when being used.  To start off, make a list of your must-have necessities and a separate list for your wants/desires.  This will help figure out the layout and how your kitchen can run most efficiently.

This smart storage idea for galley style kitchen is great
This Smart Storage Idea For Galley Style Kitchen Is Great.

Use the inside and/or outside of your cabinet doors to keep your family organized by adding a chalkboard or corkboard

Another sample how to use smart storages for galley style kitchen designs
Another Sample How To Use Smart Storages For Galley Style Kitchen Designs.


PVC cut to size makes a smart solution for a wine holder.  (Image via Lowe’s Creative Ideas)

Smart storages is good idea for galley style kitchens designs
Smart Storages Is Good Idea For Galley Style Kitchens Designs.


Adding open shelving to display glasses and/or plates makes a galley kitchen space feel larger and more open. (Image via Ron Marvin Design)

5. Create A Functioning Layout For Galley.

All cook room should be designed with the Kitchen Work Triangle in mind, but the galley kitchen especially because of the narrow corridor-like width.  It’s key to have the larger appliances staggered when on opposite sides, as well as creating large amounts of work space for food preparation.

Function layout scheme for galley style kitchens designs
Function Layout Scheme For Galley Style Kitchens Designs.


Kitchen Work Triangle showing a layout example for a galley kitchen, via Design Matters Home

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