Helpful Tips to Decorate a Small Space

Helpful Tips to Decorate a Small Space

Do you have a small space that you’re just not quite sure how to decorate? Do you wish the space was bigger? The key to decorating a small space is to give the illusion that it appears bigger in size than what it actually is. By using just a few key elements to trick the eye, you can transform your small space into looking and feeling bigger. Below are some helpful tips to help you get started.

Measure. First you’ll want to measure out the room. This step is very important because by knowing the dimensions of the room, it will help aid you in choosing the right size furniture and decor that will best fit the space which is crucial when decorating a small space.

Start with a Blank Canvas. Stand in the space and look around at what you like and what you don’t like in the space, take pictures or jot down notes. Then take everything out of the space. Starting new with an empty space will allow you to see the space differently than you currently do.

Paint. It is true that painting a small space lighter (think soft, pale and subdued shades) will make it feel brighter, more open and airy. If you’re looking for a bolder statement, a more moody and cozy feeling, then choosing a deeper yet softer color is the way to go. Either way, light or dark, to make the space feel cohesive, paint all the walls (including the ceiling, known as the fifth wall) as this will draw the eye upwards creating the illusion of height. If you’re not completely sure, test out a few different color options by painting two coats of 1ft. x 1ft. squares on a wall in the space. Leave the colors on the wall for a few days so you can get a true feel of what the colors look like during the day, sunny or cloudy and at night. To learn more about painting a space, check out my blog post here:

Furniture. Proportion, size and scale are key when it comes to selecting furniture for a smaller space. Think of it this way, bigger space, bigger furniture, smaller space, smaller furniture. When you’re working with a smaller space, the right size furniture makes all the difference. Larger furniture tends to overwhelm a smaller space, therefore making it feel smaller than what it is. The goal is to choose furniture that proportionally fits the space so it accents rather than hinders the space. Keep in mind also when decorating a smaller space, that you don’t need to put something in every corner or up against every wall, the goal is to make the area feel spacious. Choosing furniture that is slightly higher off the floor, allows you to see through the space visually and gives the appearance of a continued space, which is important when giving the illusion of more space for a smaller area. Also choosing accent pieces of furniture, for instance, a coffee table, that is transparent, gives the illusion that the space is bigger because your eye continues to look through the space.

Lighting. Anytime you’re able to use natural lighting in a space that’s a bonus. However, more times than not you’ll have to use artificial lighting in some capacity or another, especially if your space doesn’t have windows. Lighting is crucial for a small space. It brightens and expands the look of a space and ultimately visually gives the appearance that it looks bigger. There are various options to choose from, for instance using a pendant light or chandelier (lighting fixtures that hang from the ceiling) in a small space is a great option because it doesn’t take up any floor space and visually is a great statement piece and focal point. In addition, recessed lighting (lights that are installed in a hollow opening in the ceiling) is another great option for adding additional lighting without taking up additional space. Mounted wall lighting such as track lighting, wall sconces or swing arm wall lamps are all great options for small spaces as well as floor lighting fixtures which don’t take up a lot of space and cast a significant amount of light. For added illumination, strip lighting is also a great choice to install underneath shelving such as bookshelves in a small space for added ambiance.

Mirror. This is a great decor piece to use in a smaller space because it tricks the eye into thinking that the space is bigger than it actually is. Since a mirror is reflective, it not only reflects light back into the room which is beneficial for a smaller space but also reflects the view within the space giving the illusion that there’s more space.

Window Treatments. Think transparent, not opaque. You want as much light as possible to shine through, this gives the feeling of an open and bigger space as opposed to opaque window treatments which are heavier and bulkier and block light from coming through, therefore making a space feel smaller.

Storage. This is crucial for a small space. There are so many storage options to help keep your smaller space de-cluttered which is essential in making it feel spacious. When a space is cluttered with too many things, it closes in the area making it feel even smaller than it already is. When choosing storage options, keep in mind proportion, size and scale. You don’t want to choose storage for a small area that takes up too much space. Choosing pieces of furniture that are designed with storage built right into them, is a great way to add storage to a smaller space without sacrificing more space.

The bottom line when decorating a small space is to remember that it’s a small space, so proportion, size and scale are key. Don’t overwhelm the area with furniture that’s too big or overcrowd with too much decor. Remember less is best to make the area feel spacious. Most importantly, have fun transforming your small space so you can enjoy all that it has to offer.

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