Tips for living in a small space
16 February 2023
Space is a constant battle for most homes, especially flats – but this doesn't have to mean a lack of interior style. Check out our top tips on how to make the most of living in a small space.
The space-boosting powers of mirrors is well-known and the first rule is the bigger the mirror, the more space it will appear to create. Tall mirrors can enhance the proportions of a room, making the ceiling seem higher. In a narrow space, mirrors can be used to make the room seem wider.
Rearrange furniture to create flow
A quick rearrangement of your furniture can make a room feel a lot bigger than it actually is. It’s important you ensure that there is no furniture obstructing hallways or entrances to the room as this will make the space feel more cramped. Push your sofa against a wall (where possible) and position it towards the window, so your outside view can be enjoyed from the comfort of your seat.
For homes without a dedicated dining area, working around a tight space for daily meals and entertaining can be a challenge. Small dining spaces will benefit from an extending table – the winning formula is its ability to lengthen and transform a space for parties and gatherings. There’s a variety of extending styles to choose from, but it’s important to invest in one that works best in tight spaces. Butterfly leaf tables extend quickly and efficiently, and fold neatly when not in use.
Keep curtains open
Any room will appear larger if it’s well-lit! There are two options you have when it comes to lighting a room, artificial or natural. Open your window dressings to let the sunshine flood into the room throughout the day.
Too many unnecessary things can make a room feel small. If you want to squeeze more people into your lounge it might be worth removing any furniture and accessories that are taking up more space than needed, like your pouffe or rug. If you can see the floor the room will look and feel larger!
Think a toy box that could be turned into a bench with cushions on top to make it look like a piece of furniture. In the bedroom, choose an ottoman bed or one with drawers for extra storage space. A foldable chair is ideal for a home office, the kitchen, garden or can be taken when travelling.
Don’t be afraid of patterns
Forget the age-old myth that small rooms need plain walls to give them a sense of space. Wallpaper with a medium or large repeat pattern adds a sense of depth that wasn’t there before, making walls appear more expansive and rooms feel more spacious.
Artist and wallpaper designer Elizabeth Ockford says: “Just because a room is small, does not mean it doesn’t deserve bold character.
“In fact, a small room can become a favourite place quite by surprise as you decorate it with something bold you really love but wouldn’t dare to put into a bigger space such as your living room.
“Small rooms give us the opportunity to have a bit of fun with our decorating - and the rewards come back to you in spades.”
When you’ve chosen your wallpaper, it’s best to avoid breaking up the space by painting some walls or using other patterns, as this can emphasise tight quarters and make the space feel even smaller.
If you’re decorating a hallway, staircase or landing then lean into your limited space with a decisively bold print. Wallpaper with a meandering pattern will lead the eye and create a feeling of movement in a connecting space.