Expert Design Tips to Optimize Small Spaces

From the smallest apartment to the most expansive home, space can feel hard to come by. No matter the size of your living area, squeezing in as much usable space as possible can be a challenge for any homeowner. However, with the right tried-and-tested design ideas, you can create welcoming rooms out of even the smallest design spaces. Maximize your living area with these clever concepts.

Choose Light and Neutral Colors

Pairing natural light with neutral colors can help open up a room. Paint your wall with brighter colors that reflect light to make the space seem instantly larger. Adding mirrors can help when your room lacks windows as they reflect more light into your home, and sheer window treatments work wonders as well.

Designate Areas by Function

Before you add design elements to the space, decide how you will use each area of the room. For example, carving out one place for reading and relaxing and another for dining can help differentiate sections of the room by function. With an idea of the types of activities you’ll be doing in the room, you can cleverly separate parts of it: use a rug on one section of the floor, different color palettes for different functional spaces, or a room divider, for example.

Use All of Your Vertical Space

Tricking the eye into moving around the room can make a space appear more open as long as the design elements don’t create clutter. One easy way of doing this is to optimize your vertical space. This can be done by adding a photo gallery to one wall or by adding small shelves to showcase favorite pieces. Design ideas doubling as storage space are an ideal solution if you struggle to keep everything in its place. Don’t forget to consider mounting televisions and other items to free up floor space.

Bring in Multifunctional Pieces

When real estate is at a premium, every item you bring into the room must be carefully considered. Multifunctional pieces, like benches that hide storage space, convertible sofa beds, or headboards with built-in bookshelves, can help you make the most of a room.

Add Full-Sized Furniture

With small rooms, it can be tempting to use only smaller furniture, allowing you to take advantage of the space within. However, adding a few pieces of full-sized furniture accomplishes two goals. First, it offers an opportunity to play with proportion, creating a room full of personality and character. Second, using full-sized furniture—especially for sofas or desks where you’ll be spending a great deal of time—can be more luxurious and accommodating to your needs.

As you revisit your space with a critical eye to craft a more optimized living area, don’t forget to follow the golden rule of design: edit as necessary. Choosing design elements like the ones above can help you make the most of your space yet maintain a thoughtful eye to create an inviting and enjoyable area you’ll love spending time in.