Optimizing Your Small Space
Friday Jul 15th, 2022
Making the Most of Small
Designing in a small space can be a unique challenge. When it comes to finding the right furniture and decor, it can leave us feeling stumped. Let’s face it, we are all on the hunt for more space in our homes. Living smaller just means that we will need to be a bit more creative in our problem-solving. Creating more space is about re-learning how to design in your home. We are all about finding solutions, we are taking the glass half full approach to our view of cute smaller homes! Now, let's dive into learning how to intentionally create comfortable, stylish spaces while optimizing what you already have.
- When designing a space, our first stop is furniture! When buying furniture for your home, it is easy to be attracted to more on-trend options. Style often trumps function. In a small space, however, it’s important to think about function first. Each piece of furniture in your home should have several different purposes. An example of this would be furniture with storage options, a couch that lifts to store blankets or workout gear, or a working desk that can expand into a dining table to accommodate guests during dinner parties. The function should be priority one.
- The amount of items in a space is something to think about. Overly big or bulky furniture can make a room look very small, a good example of this would be an overly large sectional couch in a small space. Try going for a smaller sofa and an accent chair instead. This will add more room to the space to play around with arrangement and angles. Clear furniture like glass and acrylic are great additions to a small room. Being able to see through the furniture will make the room feel a lot bigger because it blends in with the space around it.
- Adding many pieces in a place like the living room, for example, a coffee table, side tables, ottomans and furniture can cause the area to feel cramped. Sometimes less is more. Go for the essentials only. Pieces that can be moved or adjusted are best in these situations. Like an ottoman that doubles as seating and a side table, that can be moved around when needed.
- Let’s face it, we all have a lot of stuff. No matter where you live, items accumulate over time. Decluttering can be the answer. Purging your things both big and small can allow for more living space. However, some items just need to be disguised. An example of this is an entertainment unit. In a small space having an entertainment unit and a coffee table can feel very cramped. Sometimes you only need to store a few cords in an attractive box near the tv as opposed to having a large media unit encroaching on your space altogether. Opt for wall mounting your TV, utilizing the wall space you already have. This extra room will make a big difference.
Utilize What You Have
- Even in a small home, you have wall space and height, use them to your advantage. Less furniture means there are more opportunities for wall solutions! Hanging floating shelves eliminates the need for bulky bookshelves and large bar carts for example. Opt for wall-hanging lighting when possible, this will take the lighting off the floor giving you more space to move around. It's all about drawing the eye upward. This can be done by hanging plants from the ceiling or hanging your curtains at the wall's highest point instead of at the height of your window.
- Everything needs a home in your space. Be intentional with your placement. Many homes have more than a few dead zones where furniture doesn’t fit or the area feels awkward. Put on your thinking cap and explore what the area could be used for to your benefit. As we’ve seen over the years, designers have converted closets that had little use into home office spaces, reading nooks or coffee stations. Small spaces give the individual a unique experience of finding functions where they might be hidden. Explore your space and you will find that there are solutions to your problems by using what you have.
If Paint Could Talk
- If you are into home design, you know how impactful paint can be. In a small space, bold paint can help to focus the eye on the area of the room which is the star. Painting an accent wall, a shape like an arch, a door or a fireplace can make the spot stand out and become the new focal point when you enter the room. If you are up to the challenge, painting an entire room, from the baseboards to the ceiling, including the doors, has been said to have a powerful effect on creating the illusion of more space. This effect draws the eye up, maximizing your view. If you are unable to paint in your space, try applying peel and stick wallpaper if you need a hint of fun! Go for a larger print, this will help the wall appear wider and elongate the area.
Decorate With Intention
- When styling a small space it's important to note that our main goal is to trick the eye. We can't create more square footage but we can act as if we have it. We can begin to do that by letting daylight in. Let those windows bring in the sunshine. When light bounces around in a room it creates the illusion of space. You can help light do this by adding mirrors and cool-toned colours to a room. When it comes to rugs, go big. A bigger rug that lays underneath the front legs of furniture is the way to go. The extension of the pattern of the rug allows the eye to follow it. Making the room appear much bigger. A small rug however zones the eye down to notice its size. Less is more when adding decor. Choose a few statement pieces that encourage conversation, rather than filling shelves and tables up with trinkets and decor accents. This change will make the room feel more modern and expensive.
We hope you are able to take advantage of these small space styling tips in your home! Remember to stay creative and occasionally step outside your comfort zone while designing your space! Designing is about letting your personality shine, have fun with it!
If you found these suggestions helpful in your home, feel free to share this blog with others!