Design solutions are for those of you who are fortunate to be living in small spaces. Many people may see this as a problem, but there are a few advantages. Having less room for furniture means that you can splurge a little more on each piece! How’s that for a design solution? If you decide to rip out your old flooring, you can look at investing in the higher quality flooring, since there is less floor space to cover.
This pertains to all other materials, fixtures, and furniture you may want to replace. Let’s not forget that the household bills are lower and it won’t be so exhausting to keep up with the overall maintenance. That’s a relief! Perhaps most persuasive, however, is the fact that living in a small space forces you to think more creatively and not be stuck by convention.
Design Solution #1
Shed excess baggage. Start fresh this year by getting rid of the things you don’t need or like. Clothing, books that you never read, gifts that you don’t need to hang on to anymore. Throw out anything that is broken or damaged, unless it can be made into something unique. Make sure to keep only the things you absolutely love and can’t live without.
Design Solution #2
Adopt decorative strategies that are naturally space enhancing, such as choosing light colors and keeping backgrounds neutral. This doesn’t mean it has to be bland and boring. For example, he walls, table, chairs, lighting, and even the cutlery could be all white. But then introduce a rich wooden plank flooring and a rustic armoire. Even a simple concept of adding an old pot, with vibrant colored flowers will make a remarkable statement.
The use of strong color can be surprisingly successful in areas such as hallways and stairs, where it has the effect of a vivid thread tying together different spaces in the home.
Choose materials that are similar in tone throughout the space. Think about your home as a whole, instead of a number of linked areas or separate rooms. I’m not suggesting that every space needs to display the same decorative choices, but there must be a consistent theme that holds it all together. In small space, color is often best used as a feature or accent. As we have discussed, all white decoration is a tried and tested means of enhancing space and making the most of natural light.
Design Solution #3
Large prints and motifs can be much more effective in small spaces than patterns that feature small repeats.
Design Solution #4
Mirrors and reflective surfaces make the most of available natural light and help make the space seem larger.
Design Solution #5
Pay close attention to artificial lighting. Sensitive lighting has a vast impact on our impression of space. Never rely on a single central overhead light to deliver all the illumination in a given area. This will cause glare, which is tiring and depressing. Even in the smallest living area, you will need four to five different light sources. Vary their position and height to lead the eye through the space. This will make the room seem bigger because everything is not uniformly lit.
-Target light at points of interest. Our eyes are naturally drawn to light. Make use of this by focusing the fixture on whatever is worthy of attention. A fireplace, large artwork, or a stone accent wall.
-Limit the number of recessed down lights, and only use where necessary, such as hallways, bathrooms, and over the kitchen sink.
-Use architectural lighting in feature fitted areas, such as built in storage, wall niches, and stairs. Dimmers are also very essential in bedrooms and kitchens, where you can turn the lights up to read and dress in your bedroom, or prepare food and cook in the kitchen, and then turn them down to provide a more welcoming atmosphere for dining.
Design Solution #6
Simplify architectural detail to reduce visual clutter.
Design Solution #7
Build in as much storage space as you can. Freestanding storage is bulky and creates dead space around it. Consider creating built-in storage as much as possible.
Design Solution #8
Choose furniture that is adaptable, flexible and multipurpose. One way of minimizing the amount of furniture you require is to select multipurpose designs that serve more than one function. Picture a unique broken circular arrangement embracing a fireplace as the focal point. Visualize the sofas being white and contrasting well with the warmer materials of the wooden flooring and Tuscan finished wall. It would enhance the space, making it appear more spacious.
Design Solution #9
Open up your home internally by knocking down partitions or by creating new internal openings.
Design Solution #10
Maximize space and storage by configuring shelves or furniture under the stairs.
The design solutions for small spaces are fairly straightforward. First don’t overcrowd. Keep the number of items in the room to a minimum, and secondly, don’t overwhelm the space with furnishings that are too tall, too bulky or too busy for the space. This means that you may need to steer clear of Victorian or Edwardian pieces, many of which were designed to fit a rather imposing scale and feature decorative details that are just too ornate for small spaces.
Georgian furniture, on the other hand, is usually more delicate, while the low, lean lines of bohemian furnishings are particularly suited to small or low-ceilinged rooms. Metropolitan furniture, too, is not only clean in form but also cleverly designed to enable you to make the most of limited space: wheeled, folding or hideaway pieces, and dual purpose items, such as sofa beds or storage seats.
Bear in mind that furniture raised on legs-whether a sofa, kitchen cupboard or bath, will, by increasing the visible floor area, make the room seem larger, as will furniture that is transparent (it could be made of glass, acrylic or wire) or reflective (made of metal or mirror).
Thinking beyond furniture, get clever with color, choosing pale, airy shades to enhance the feeling of space; add large-scale patterns on a pale, open background. And finally, maximize light by keeping window treatments minimal and adding an interesting variety of table, floor lamps, and or suspended fixtures.