10 ways to make the most of small spaces

Amy Buxton Amy Buxton
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It's not easy decorating small spaces and it becomes even more difficult with a large family living in a cramped environment. It may, however, be a good catalyst for change as when faced with a small house we have no choice but to pare back our belongings and think of a more simplistic or clever way to live. Though it is a good step, psychologically speaking, to free ourselves of unnecessary items, in reality that is easier said than done, especially when nostalgia plays a role. Instead, consider clever storage and making individual spaces fit for purpose and so beautiful that you are unwilling to clutter them up with mountains of belongings. 

Take a look at these examples of small spaces that have been transformed and see if you could adopt a similar approach in your home!

1. Terrific terrace

 Terrace by Home Staging Factory
Home Staging Factory

Double bedroom marquise

Home Staging Factory

A small balcony that is simple and uncomplicated can add wonderful usable space to any home, but if you insist on decorating it with too many elements, it will become difficult to move around. In this example, the use of mosaic tiles to differentiate between indoor and outdoor areas is a great touch and infuses character and style into the space and if you have a green thumb, we recommend hanging planters, so as to keep the floor space as free and roomy as possible.

2. Beautiful bedroom

In a small bedroom, why not consider furniture that seeks to make the most of height, rather than width? For example, note the headboard on this bed that is extending long, elegant lines up to the ceiling, giving the impression of height and space. No chance of claustrophobia here, we love how even the lamps have been kept skinny and tall, all to reiterate the prevailing theme of height and space. Wonderful!

3. Super study

If you do not have the luxury of enough space for a designated office, that's no problem, just take over an unoccupied wall and use it to pull over a small desk and chair. You do not need much room to work with, not with most tasks now completed on a computer and in small spaces, less really is more. Think of it as a good thing as there will be less items to distract you from the tasks in hand! We love this small traditional desk that looks perfectly at home against the white wall and offers perfect usability and aesthetic charm.

4. Delightful dining room

Small round tables are fantastic for conveying a feeling of familiarity and nostalgia and naturally encourage sharing and conversation, because everyone converges at the centre. This style of table really is ideal if you do not have a very large dining room and though the example here is minimalist, we know that pops of colour and fun soft furnishings would detract nothing, if that is more your style.

5. Brilliant bathroom

A bathroom is a necessity that often seems to fall prey to small amounts of available space. Not a problem in this example, as the basin is narrow, tall and suspended and the toilet happily follows suit. A mirror is always useful in the respect of enlarging a space, effectively making it feel twice as big and in this bathroom, a stunning piece has been opted for, making a drastic style statement as well as being a practical solution. Light colours, elongated features and minimal decoration are all working wonders in this tiny room.

6. Lovely living room

A small living room can make good use of light colours and glass to make it seem far larger than it actually is. By using dead space for practical uses, such as bookshelves, the rest of the room can be kept clear of trinkets and space stealing additions, without negating on character and charm. The glass coffee table in this example offers discreet practicality, due to almost disappearing completely and though a small room, there is everything you could need for a comfortable and relaxing evening.

7. Clever kitchen

A small kitchen can be a real bugbear, especially for lovers of cooking, as you may want to spend all of your free time in there, but there are ways to get around a smaller space than you would like. In this example, the kitchen is relatively narrow, but to overcome this disadvantage, the Home Staging Factory chose plain cabinets, finished in bright white and instead of a traditional table, introduced a wall mounted bench with high chairs.

By keeping the cabinets the same colour as the walls, more can be added without feeling claustrophobic, thus increasing storage and allowing for clear worktops and the lasting impression is one of a much vaster and wonderfully practical space than first met the eye.

8. Shared space

modern Living room by Traço Magenta - Design de Interiores
Traço Magenta—Design de Interiores

Zona de estudo e brincadeira

Traço Magenta - Design de Interiores

Small houses are extremely challenging and require families to be adaptive. If you have children of different ages, they will naturally have differing needs, so why not consider creating an office with all of them in mind? We love this space that has created two zones, differentiated by dynamic lines and sizes. In this room, older children can easily complete their homework, while younger siblings get down to the serious business of playing and being watched. No sibling rivalry here!

9. Children's quarters

For a child's room there really is nothing better than a bunk bed. Working with height, the bunk leaves most of the rest of the floor space free for playing. The inclusion of shelves and a desk on the relatively useless side section of wall is genius and offers much needed storage and drawing space, both of which would come at a premium in a tiny property, so making the most of any and all space is a great idea.

10. Exceptional entrance

You may not have the overwhelming entrance hall of Buckingham Palace, but that doesn't mean you don't need to pay attention to it. The first part of your home that any guests see and the area that welcomes you back after a long day, your entrance hall can enjoy features such as narrow dressers and sleek, tall mirrors to really make the most of the available space.

For more small home inspiration, take a look at this Ideabook: Creative living ideas: Small home design.

How do you utilise the small spaces in your home? Tell us in the comments, below.
Whitton Drive:  Terrace house by GK Architects Ltd

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