by Tracey Jones and Stacey Kaminski –
Downsize … it’s what we are doing. Less financial burden with a smaller eco footprint. Living with less and doing more. Condo and micro loft living, tiny homes … the list goes on.
Making the most of your small space is easy with some clever design tricks.
One of the easiest ways to make a small space feel larger is to keep the palette neutral, and light. This creates flow from room to room and appears less choppy. Another visual trick to create “higher ceilings” is to hang drapery rods at the ceiling line and extend the rods a few inches past the window. This allows for more light and makes the window appear larger.
To avoid a corridor effect in a small narrow living room, swap out a large sofa for an L-shaped piece. This creates a cozy seating area.
Think up! Create visual interest and storage space up the walls! A sneaky built-in shelf cheat is to use standard kitchen wall cabinets along the wall ( they typically run 12 ” deep and 12 to 15″ wide) Doors off = instant open shelving!
Floating shelves are perfect for small rooms as they can hold so many things up and out of the way while still giving an airy feel. Install them stacked to the ceiling and you have the illusion of built in. This is perfect for small awkward alcoves as well. Adding wall hooks underneath a shelf creates an instant entry catchall for coats, hats, grocery bags and pet leashes. Going high and narrow in an entryway keeps the space from feeling cluttered. Search for shallow storage solutions ( about 6″ deep) with surfaces that won’t jut out into the thoroughfare of the hall. Narrow wall-mounted foldaway drawer units are specifically made to hold shoes and a myriad of other household goods.
No room for surface-stealing night table lamps? Wall mount sconces instead. These can be hard wired in or there are lots of great plug-in options.
Swap kitchen chairs for built-in bench seating along a wall or corner nook. This not only saves space but creates a great opportunity for bench storage (and a pretty seat cushion!)
Consider the lost area under the stairs. We are seeing lots of built-in cubbies, deep drawers and even dog ” houses” and kids’ play areas in this under-used hidden spaces.
Make your furniture do more. There are lots of under-bed storage systems out there now. We are also seeing built in convertible sleeper sofas with under storage in really small spaces paired with multifunction built in side tables. The tiny home mantra is to have every piece of furniture have multiple purposes.
A wall-mounted, flip-down desk can also serve as a great bar in the kitchen or dining area or add a mirror and it becomes a slim vanity in a bedroom
Traditional swing doors are space stealers too! A sliding or track door allows for privacy but also saves precious square footage. Lots of track systems are sold in retail stores nowadays, ranging from ultra modern to rustic barn door styles. This is great for bedrooms, ensuites and multiuse office and guest spaces.
There are so many great options! We preach Edit! Edit! Edit! to our downsizing clients. Living with less generally equals less stress. It is a very practised approach and practise can make perfect!
For more information visit Tracey Jones at www.remarkableinteriors.ca or Stacey Kaminski at www.interiorstylesbystacey.com.