Monday, January 18, 2010

Make A Big Statement In A Small Space - BTSH Around The House Tip of the Week

Whether you’re a student trying to make the most of your small apartment on a budget, or living in a metropolis filled with high-cost low on space living accommodations, there are ways to maximize your space. I have put together some tips for selecting the right furniture and colours, as well as managing your storage.

Choosing the right furniture is definitely key in maximizing your space. You can gain space by simply choosing smaller, but still functional furniture. For example, consider an armless couch. While you’ll still have the same space for sitting, you won’t need to take up extra room with the arms. Plus, the couch looks less bulky, and helps to open the space. Downsize your end tables. You may also consider nesting tables as an alternative, and eliminate the coffee table. The smaller nesting tables can be pulled out as needed for entertaining guests. Another alternative to the coffee table is the storage ottoman. This helps to increase your storage space, and many come with a reversible lid that can be used as an extra seat for a guest on one side, and a tray table on the reverse side. Multi-functional furniture is key in small space living, whether it’s a desk that looks like a wardrobe and can close up out of site, or a couch that turns into a bed. While you may not have room for a lot of furniture, be sure to make the most of what you do have.

Make use of your space from floor to ceiling. Owning the property will allow you more flexibility in this, but there are solutions if you’re renting that can be temporary as well. Removing closet doors will help to open up the space, making it easier to manoeuvre, and much less inhibiting. A closet organizer will help to maximize the space, as well as keep it functional and of course, organized. If you can’t install a custom closet, make use of stackable storage bins, and clearly label. Pack away clothes that are out of season, and purge regularly. If you own, consider adding built-ins in the living room to help with media storage, and other miscellaneous storage. Open up a kitchen by replacing the panels in the cabinet doors with frosted or clear glass. This will also force you to keep the cupboards organized. The number one rule when working in a small space is to remember a place for everything, and everything in it’s place. It is cliché, but it works.

Choosing the right colours for your small space can be a challenge. In order to avoid crowding a space with colour, try to avoid using more than 3 colours in any given room. If you’re renting, you’re likely allowed to paint, but will need to return the walls to neutral before moving out. To save yourself some work, go ahead and start with a nice neutral shade, and spruce it up with accent colours in an area rug, throws, cushions, and other accessories. If you own, go ahead and paint what you want, but keep to the lighter shades and avoid dark colours. To make a small room look bigger, paint the ceiling a shade lighter than the walls. For some great colour ideas, check out last week’s article on colour trends for 2010.

Written by Shauna Lynn, Beyond The Stage Homes

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