Looking for tips for decorating a small space? From choosing the right colors to selecting the best furniture, these tips will help you make the most of your tiny apartment or home!
Easy Tips for Decorating a Small Space
If you saw my bedroom post last week, you probably have an idea just how tiny my apartment is. The thing is, even though this is the smallest space I’ve ever lived in, it doesn’t feel that small.
When we moved to New York, I wanted to make the most out of our cozy apartment without making it feel cluttered. The high ceilings and huge windows definitely help, but it also required a lot of careful planning.
If you are decorating your own tiny home or apartment, there are definitely things you can do to maximize the space. Today, I’m sharing five of my favorite tips for decorating a small space!
1. Consider How You Want the Space to Flow
Flow is critical when decorating a small space. There is nothing more annoying than having to step around an awkwardly placed chair or coffee table.
A few tips for creating good flow in a small space:
- Leaving ample space between furniture will allow you to move around the room easily. Apartment Therapy has a great furniture spacing guide.
- Don’t crowd the room. Lots of little pieces of furniture will make your room feel cluttered. It’s better to use a few larger pieces of furniture instead.
- Think about how you will enter and exit the room and make sure your furniture layout takes this into account.
2. Use Color Strategically
Color is one of the most important elements of design. Here’s how to use color strategically when decorating a small space:
- Think about the room’s desired function and atmosphere and select colors accordingly. Do you want your bedroom to be a relaxing retreat? Are you decorating a dining room where you plan throw fun dinner parties? This color psychology infographic can help you decide what colors will help you achieve that feeling.
- Color helps create a sense of space: think jewel box vs. neutral box. Colorful walls and furniture can make a room feel smaller and more intimate, lending the room a jewel box effect. Conversely, a neutral box has more sedate-colored walls and furniture (whites, greys, etc.). A neutral box usually feels larger and can be dressed up with colorful accessories. Either “box” works though. Determine how you want the room to feel, then choose colors and placement wisely.
- Keep a small home coherent by carrying colors from one room to the next. For example, my apartment has various shades of orange and blue throughout. You don’t have to use the same colors in all of your rooms, but the colors should relate to each other.
3. Pare Down Your Belongings
I love my stuff, so I understand how hard it can be to downsize your belongings. It’s so important in a small space though. Here are a few tips to get your started:
- Before buying anything, ask yourself if you really need it. If you don’t need it, is it something you can’t live without?
- Get rid of something old every time you bring something new into your home.
- Make it a point to go through your belongings once a season or so. If you can’t seem to part with anything, I highly recommend reading The Life-Changing Art of Tidying Up.
- Do a purge before you start organizing. There’s no point in organizing things you don’t need or never use.
4. Think About the Room’s Function
Functionality is key in a small space, where a living room might also serve as an office, or a kitchen might also hold a dining space.
- Choose furniture that has multiple uses. This is something I’ve always try to keep in mind when decorating a small space. For example, our TV stand is a narrow console table with two shelves. The top shelf holds the TV, and the lower shelf holds a DVD player, movies, etc. Under the console, I added a bench with storage space for blanket and quilts. The bench can be pulled out for extra seating, when needed. It’s a great use of a narrow space.
- Use furniture, such as a strategically placed screen, bookcase, or couch, to divide a room into different areas.
- Well-placed rugs will visually define multiple spaces in an open room.
5. Make a Plan Before Buying Anything
A good plan makes decorating a small room easier and will help you avoid expensive mistakes.
- Start by drawing a floor plan. Try using Autodesk Homestyler or use graph paper. It doesn’t have to be perfect.
- Measure everything twice, including doorways. I learned this the hard way, when the couch I ordered wouldn’t fit through our narrow apartment door. Talk about disappointing!
- Make a budget. Determine how much you’ll spend on each item and create a savings plan. Remember that you don’t need to buy everything at once.
- Pick a color scheme (there is endless inspiration on Pinterest). One thing to keep in mind though: there are a million paint colors, but you might only find one couch you love and can afford. Choose your paint color last.
Most importantly, have fun!
Do you live in a small space? I’d love to hear your tips, too!