Creating space where there really isn't any is something interior designers are adept at, but what can we do in our own homes to make small proportions feel more generous?
Living in a small home can quickly become a big bugbear, unless you know how to use the space you have, as well as knowing how to use clever techniques that will give the illusion of more space. Well, today we're going to let you in on a few.
We don't want to be stingy with the top tips (this is part one of a two-part series), so make sure you come back tomorrow to learn about another 12 great ways to get more space in a small home.
A small bedroom can feel far bigger if you keep it neat and uncluttered.
With this in mind, bedside tables that have plenty of storage in them are key. This example would easily be able to handle stowing away all the bulky bed linen you have to try and house.
Built-in varieties also offer a seamless connection to the bed.
If you absolutely do not have room for a kitchen island (and therefore a breakfast bar), look for a bistro dining set that is tall and skinny.
You'll get the illusion of an island and the dining functionality that you need, but your kitchen won't feel smaller or as though it's been sacrificed for the cause.
A great trick to make a small room look and feel taller is to hang your curtains above the window.
You essentially want to get your curtain rod as close to the ceiling as possible, so the hanging fabric can create the illusion of more height and free-flowing space.
Did you know that striped rugs actually give the illusion of a room being far wider than it is?
We were shocked as we assumed a patterned rug would actually shrink the space, but the reality is the complete opposite. Now that really is worth knowing!
If you love the idea of a rug but bold patterns are definitely not your thing, try a plain and neutral variety, which will detract little to no attention.
Don't forget to anchor it under some furniture though as floating rugs make floors look tiny and ineffectual.
Hallway runners are fantastic for making a corridor not only look and feel much longer, but also wider.
Choose horizontal stripes to amplify width and neutral colours to create more length, or combine the two and go all out!
This might be a surprising piece of advice, but you should consider mirrored furniture if you want to create the illusion of more space in your home.
Simple tables, cabinets or bedside tables are perfect for this and, as the light bounces off them, they will almost disappear yet still offer lots of functionality.
Ladder shelves are perfect when you need some hanging space but you have tiny rooms to contend with.
Picture a small bathroom, for example. A ladder shelf could even hide behind the door and still offer ample towel hanging opportunities, as well as toiletry storage.
We think this is a little bit of black magic, but leafy houseplants (particularly big varieties) will make a room look and feel much larger than it is.
We don't know how it works, but we promise you that it does. And just in case you need extra reasons to have them, they'll also make your air cleaner!
Choosing coffee tables that have skinny or 'pin' legs will create the illusion they're almost floating, which makes your floor space and, in turn the whole room, seem bigger.
Of course, if you slap a really dark top on the table, the illusion could be broken but a neutral top will keep the space looking large.
Bear with us as we aren't advocating a return to 70s decorating!
A tasteful beaded curtain can be a great way to partition off a tiny cupboard (such as a cloakroom) from a main living space without adding in extra opaque doors.
We could see this really working in a hallway, or a bedroom that has a small built-in closet.
Clear acrylic dining chairs simply disappear before your eyes and leave a room (however small) feeling far bigger.
They help to keep light flowing and offer no solid opposition to an airy and open feel. We love this tip, purely for the fact that clear furniture can be called 'ghost furniture'!
Come back tomorrow for part two but, in the meantime, check out this Ideabook: 16 small gardens that fit anywhere in your home.