As some of you may know...we are currently renting a home. And although it is a great home, and we like it very much, it is - how shall I put this? - cozy. And if you know realtor-speak at all, you know that cozy is a code word for small. And that's okay because it is perfect for our family at this time. But, that said, there are some challenges that come along with living in a small-ish space. But I believe that challenges are just opportunities in disguise. So today I wanted to share 7 tips for maximizing your small space...for turning those challenges into decorating opportunities!
1. Find furniture that serves multiple purposes. And when I say multiple purposes, I'm usually referring to STORAGE. Storage is almost always an issue in smaller homes, and anything that can add extra storage is a bonus. A dresser makes a great console table AND adds extra storage. Using a trunk as a coffee table can do the same. Of course, furniture such as sleeper sofas or chairs are also great because they are functional during the day, but can accomodate guests at night. You get the idea.
2. Use small scale furniture. Now, I'm not always a fan of following "the rules" of decorating. However, this is one of those rules that will really help to visually enlarge a small space. Large furniture can be used in a small space, of course. And it makes the space feel cozy. But remember what the word "cozy" is code for? Yep. Small. So if you want to visually enlarge a small space, choose furniture that is in scale with that space. It really does work.
3. Control clutter. Remember my post from yesterday? When it comes to small space decorating, especially, remember to edit, edit, edit. Simple accessories and concealed storage are your friends in a small space.
4. Add mirrors. I am a HUGE fan of mirrors! I love them!! And small spaces especially benefit from the addition of mirrors. Not only do mirrors visually enlarge a space by reflecting it back at you, but they also reflect light, and light helps to make a space feel larger as well. So add mirrors...everywhere.
5. Use glass-topped furniture. I am, of course, primarily referring to coffee and end tables. Because glass-topped tables make a space appear larger by receding into the background. They allow the space around them to be seen. They visually appear smaller, so they make the room seem larger.
6. Use similar wall and fabric colors. This is one of those rules of decorating that - again - really works in a small space. By choosing a wall color and similar drapery or upholstery colors, you create a visual continuity that enlarges a space. It is the same concept as clothing...if you wear all one color from head to toe, you will appear taller and thinner because the eye won't "stop" at the change in colors. If you paint a wall blue and then continue with the same shade of blue curtains, your eye will move over the whole space uninterrupted and it will appear larger. And don't worry about this making the space boring..that's what accessories are for, remember?
7. Hang curtains as close to the ceiling as possible. I'm sure you've heard the decorating trick that hanging curtains higher and wider than a window visually enlarges the window. Well, the same idea works for ceiling height. Hanging curtains as close to the ceiling as possible will give the illusion of higher ceilings. Try this trick...it really works!
So if you, like me, are living in a cozy space...try incorporating a few of these tricks and check out the difference it makes. You'll be amazed!
And now, I have a fun giveaway for you. The good people of Apartment Guide have offered to give one reader of The Shabby Nest a $100 AmEx gift card!
1. Leave a comment on this post telling me your favorite small space decorating trick (and even if you live in a large space...I bet you have one of these up your sleeve.)
2. For an extra entry, you can follow Apartment Guide on Twitter @AptGuide for tips and updates on making the most of your space and then leave an additional comment to let me know that you are following.
Giveaway will be open until Saturday, March 10 at 11:59 pm MST. I will choose a winner via Random.org. Good luck~
- If you’re ready for a whole new space or are looking to move, Apartment Guide has the photos, floor plans, features and tips to help you find the perfect apartment community.
- Whether you're living, looking or moving, Apartment Guide offers how-to tips for making the most of a space on a budget on http://www.movingtoday.comand http://www.apartmentguide.com/blog/.