Small space living is increasingly common. It may provide you with an easier lifestyle with reduced maintenance and upkeep tasks around the house. It also may be much more affordable to own or lease a smaller space and even to decorate it. As beneficial as it can be to live in a smaller space, there are also some common decorating challenges that you may run into. For example, smaller spaces can often feel cramped and even claustrophobic in comparison to larger spaces. Regardless of whether you are dealing with this type of decorating issue in your small home or you have other related issues, consider how some of these effective design tips may be useful in your space.
Maximizing the Use of Light
Dark, shadowy spaces can easily make an already small space seem even smaller and more closed off. On the other hand, when you incorporate ample use of natural light in the space, you can cast away the shadows and create a lighter, airy feeling in the home. Rather than decorate with heavy drapes, choose sheers or other lighter window coverings that allow more natural light to shine in. If funds permit, consider enlarging the windows, adding a skylight window or even tearing down a wall or two to allow light to flow more naturally between the rooms. You also should consider updating the light fixtures or even adding more overhead lights or lamps to bring additional light into the room.
Choosing Minimalist Furnishings
The furnishings in a small room should be chosen carefully. You need to understand your functional need for furnishings as a first step. For example, think about how much storage space you need in a bedroom dresser or how many seats you need in your living room. While your furniture needs to be functional, it needs to be designed appropriately for the space. One idea is to use Ekornes Stressless furniture and accessories. These are pieces that have a minimalist design, and they can help you to accomplish your functional needs without creating a closed-off look in your space.
Selecting the Right Paint Colors
Paint color is essential when you are trying to make a smaller space seem larger. Dark colors do not reflect light well, so they can easily detract from the benefits that natural or artificial lighting can provide to you. Choose lighter colors, but consider using a slightly darker shade on a far wall or even on the ceiling. This can create an illusion of depth in the space. You can also use decorative painting techniques, such as horizontal stripes on some walls, to create a similar effect. Using a focal point to draw the attention of the eye will not create more space in the room, but it can create the illusion of space. Choose a focal point that has an ideal size for the room, and consider its placement carefully. A smart idea is to place it opposite the primary doorway. It is also ideal to choose a wall that is farther away in a rectangular room. Consider using decorative paint colors to further accent this space.
Maximizing Vertical Space
You understandably have some features that are essential in your space, such as storage features, lamps and more. While you could place these on the ground or on lower levels in the room, they may unnecessarily take up valuable floor space. An alternative is to use vertical space when possible. Installing hanging shelves rather than standing shelves on the floor is one idea. You can also use wall sconces rather than floor lamps. These are only some of the many creative ways to maximize vertical space in a small room.
Deciding on Uniform Flooring
Flooring is an important design element in any room. In a smaller space, flooring can be used effectively in multiple ways to make the room seem larger. You may be inclined to break up flooring types between rooms, but uniformity and flow are essential. In addition to choosing one flooring type that flows from room to room, think about how the installation pattern and side of tiles or the striations on wood flooring can be used to create the illusion of more space. It is also helpful to choose lighter floor colors in most cases.
You may have chosen to live in a smaller home because of its affordability and practicality, or you may have no other choice but to live in a small space. Regardless of the reason why you are in a smaller home, you understandably want to make this space as inviting and comfortable to live in as possible. Each of these tips can effectively help you to achieve your desired goals in different ways. Assess your home’s needs with these tips in mind before you develop a strategic design plan for your home.
Chris McNair is the General Manager at European Leather Gallery — the premier Ekornes Stressless furniture dealer in the United States.