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Smart furniture for the small spaces

Beth Cochrane Beth Cochrane
Colonial style study/office by CARLA GARCÍA Colonial
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Small spaces can often be difficult to furnish but there are some advantages to limited dimensions. Smaller rooms can be more cosy and are easier to heat, which is exactly what we want now the clocks have turned back and winter is looming.

Furnishing and decorating your less spacious rooms doesn't have to be a chore as there are some very easy ways to make the most of what space you have. Try to stick to more neutral colours, although feel free to add splashes of lighter colours. Don't have too much going on in a smaller space; keep it simple and effective. And, most importantly, choose furniture that will work most effectively for the space available! Don't let one piece of furniture dominate a room. Instead, let smaller items collect together to efficiently form the room, while maintaining an air of sophisticated space.  

Cosy kitchens

Sometimes there's no real need for large and lavish kitchens. Sometimes, as in many rustic kitchens, having a smaller, cosier space is exactly the design most desired. The smaller kitchen pictured here is a really wonderful showcase of excellent design, with ample surface space to work with, enough storage space for all your appliances and even an intimate kitchen table with accompanying breakfast stools.

Any kitchen can work with minimum space—all it needs is the right design. Kitchen islands are a great way to utilise space, particularly those that double up as a breakfast bar. In addition, rows of pegs above the worktops can be a great storage idea as you can hang your kitchen utensils within easy reach.  

The chaise longue sofa

We'll all agree that this living space is definitely of a small size but that certainly doesn't mean there are less possibilities when designing it. As we can see, the room has been meticulously thought out and planned around the smaller area, with the designer careful to maximise what they have been working with.

The white walls create space and allow the room to absorb natural light, thus helping to maximise its appearance. The designer has kept flourishes of colour to a relative minimum, which lets the room really breathe. With furniture the designer has opted for a chaise longue sofa, which are ideal for comfortable and cosy seating without taking up much space. 

Practical spaces

This bed is such an eclectic, original and functional design. It illustrates that there's no need to scrimp on storage when lacking the extra space—simply incorporate storage into the design, even into the furniture. This raised bed is perhaps an extreme example of this but one that exemplifies the general idea.

Storage underneath the bed is a very common way to work around a smaller space. For example, hide away your rarely watched DVDs and summer clothes in baskets or boxes. Shelving is another great storage idea but also a wonderful way to display books and family photos. The bed pictured has shelves built into it: another fantastic feature that really makes this such a practical design. 

Divine dining rooms

Dining rooms don't have to be the grand, impressive spaces that we imagine from days of candlelight and Victorian fireplaces. Forget your old impressions of gigantic and ornate tables and instead usher in the 21st century's take on dining rooms. They can be personal, intimate and, most of all, quirky!

Smaller dining rooms lend themselves a great deal of character and can be an ideal setting for intimate dining. Perfect for a group of friends or family, smaller dining rooms are becoming increasingly common, which has consequently led many designers and manufacturers to create their products accordingly. The example here show an unadorned, wooden table surrounded by casually eclectic chairs. Nothing dominates the room and every object' serves both a practical and aesthetic purpose.

Make the most of your hallway

A small hallway could be a blessing in disguise; there's no where to clutter up with abandoned shoes and forgotten scarves! The smaller hallway will force you to put away your things properly, with order and organisation. Shoe racks are a great way to maintain this organisation, as are pegs in the wall. Aside from these things, and maybe a small table to keep your keys on, try not to clutter your hallway with more furniture. Particularly in the smaller ones it's important to keep it a clear space; you don't want your guests to be overwhelmed as soon as they step in the door. Rather, try to keep the furniture to a minimum, with only a few accessories. The pegs in the above image are a perfect example of useful and practical accessories to have in a smaller hallway, as they serve both functionally and aesthetically. 

Bathroom spaces

Georgian Farmhouse Country style bathroom by Etons of Bath Country
Etons of Bath

Georgian Farmhouse

Etons of Bath

There are so many ways to design a bathroom with limited space available. But what are the ins and outs of designing a bathroom that little bit larger than an en suite but not quite large enough for the free standing bath and separate shower unit?

The above example shows a great solution to many bathroom worries: combining the bath with the shower unit. Having a shower above your bath is a really great space saving solution as it takes away the need for a separate unit yet still ticks all the practical boxes for showering. Another great tip, also exemplified above, is using a long mirror across one wall. It creates the idea of extra space and reflects the light back into the room. Between intelligent lighting, use of long mirrors and combining shower and bath, this bathroom really makes the most of its space. 

Utilise your office

Be realistic when it comes to your office. Do you really need that huge mahogany desk? Those tall and imposing bookshelves that house those books that, let's face it, you'll probably never get round to reading? No, so let's take it down to the bare minimum for the smaller office.

A desk with enough space for your papers and laptop, some smaller shelves for the essential books and perhaps a filing cabinet or set of drawers for your papers. A great thing about modern design is that often these things are now incorporated into one desk, thus making it easier for you to fit into your small room. Match with a chair, good lighting and some personal accessories and you have a winning office space! The above example includes an optional hammock for those days you just can't keep working and need that well-desreved nap. Feel free to incorporate the idea into your own designs!  

Do you have a small small to furnish? What are your plans? Let us know in the comments, below.
Whitton Drive by GK Architects Ltd Modern

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