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Whether it is a bedroom, bathroom, kitchen or even a living room having a space in your home that is less than roomy – in basic terms a small space – can be something of a challenge when it comes to layout and interior design and especially when it comes to staging a home for sale.
But if expansion via extension is not an option – and very few homesellers will want to go to that extra expense – then a homeowner has no choice but to adapt to what (little) they have to work with. Small rooms and high style are not mutually incompatible though, especially if you keep these basic dos and don’ts in mind:
Don’t Overdress the Windows
Windows make a great deal of difference in a small space and can be the difference between a room that looks like a dreary box and a space that is small but chic. They can’t do anything however if you insist in drowning them in meters of fussy curtain.
No matter what the room’s function the windows in a small place should be elegantly under-dressed to a certain extent. That means sticking to simple basics like Venetian blinds and Roman shades, accented, if you like, with simple sheer panels that will add style without adding bulk.
Do Leverage Height
If you have a small kitchen or bathroom it’s very important that you leverage height, especially when it comes to storage. No, you may not have much floor space to work with but you do usually have a couple of metres between the floor and the ceiling and – as is the case for the bathroom pictured above – long, thin cupboards can store as much a wider ones and still lend a stylish, streamlined appearance to the space.
Don’t Push All the Furniture Against the Walls
It is tempting, especially in a small living room, to fall into the trap of pushing all of your furniture against the walls in an attempt to create an illusion of extra space. While doing so may seem to physically give you more space it will not enhance the function of the room and the whole thing will end up looking a little like a 5 year old’s dollshouse layout, not the best look at all and certainly not conducive to conversation and relaxation, two of the primary purposes of such a room.
Do Reconsider Open Shelving
If you have a small kitchen you may have already heard that removing the doors from at least some of your kitchen cupboards, or going glass fronted at the very least, is a great way to add the illusion of extra space. And it is. Many people shy away from the idea however because it calls for a level of neatness and organization they are not sure they can commit to.
The effort really is worth it though as the impact of open shelving is immediate and extremely effective. If worst comes to worst call in a tradesman and have frosted glass doors added to a cupboard or two. It will have some of the same impact but still allow for a little occasional disorganization.
Don’t Overlook the Power of Built Ins
To some people the idea of calling in a carpenter to knock them up some space saving built ins sounds very Seventies, but as you can see from the picture above when such things are implemented well they can be highly effective and very practical. In this example not only has a whole ‘new world’ of storage space been opened up but by giving the small settee its own ‘spot’ both the room’s overall efficiency and appearance has been greatly improved.