There’s something enchanting about small residences: cozy studios, homey one-bedroom cottages, charming city apartments. There’s a warm, snug feeling in places like these that’s hard to find in roomier stomping grounds.
Unfortunately, there’s a fine line between “cozy” and “cramped.” Which is why Poise & Purpose is here to break down the tough job of making a small space not only doable but adorable.
1. Create distinct areas for all the space’s uses.
Especially in very small apartments (like studios), it’s tempting to look at the space as one area and try to pack in all the functions you need haphazardly. But this usually ends up making the space look cluttered and is confusing for guests. Instead, it helps to create defined areas within the room for everything you’ll be doing: sleeping, eating, entertaining, working. It also forces you to prioritize what’s important to you in a living space: Is a larger sleeping area important? Or a roomier office for working from home? Or maybe an airy entertaining space? Once you’ve decided how to set your space, use throw rugs or see-through dividers (like low cube bookshelves) to definite the “rooms.”
2. Mirror, mirror on the wall.
Mirrors are not only a super easy way to add style to a blank wall; they also create the illusion of a bigger space. Try leaning a large floor mirror in a corner near a window to reflect light into the room.
3. Pick multi-tasking pieces.
When it comes to small spaces, multi-purpose furniture is key. Think ottomans that double as side tables or footstools, a coffee table that doubles as extra seating in a pinch, or a desk that converts into a dining table.
Along the same lines, try to only buy pieces that provide some kind of hidden storage as well. In small spaces, it’s crucial to keep clutter out-of-sight in order to keep the space looking clean (even just a few pairs of shoes laying around can create visual clutter), so challenge yourself to not buy any furniture that don’t offer at least some storage, too.
4. Pick 2-3 colors to use throughout.
A benefit of a smaller space is that it can actually be easier to create a cohesive style than in a much larger apartment. To help your space look finished and pulled-together, pick 2 or 3 colors and stick to them, mixing up textures as you keep within the same palette.