Look for small-scale versions of your favorite pieces, like the loveseat version of a beautiful sofa, or a side table version of a pretty coffee table. Take measurements and do a bit of research to find furnishings that fit as close to the amount of space you have available. In general, lower-profile furniture makes ceilings feel higher. Try a bed with a full set of drawers underneath. Even something as easy as a wall-mounted shelf instead of a side table can take advantage of unused space.
REPURPOSE YOUR FAVORITES
You’ll likely have favorite pieces of furniture you’d prefer not to part with. Try to put them to use in a different way. Convert that china cabinet to store dry goods to create a pantry in the open. A beautiful antique chest may now do double duty as both a storage place for linens and a small table or base for books and a lamp. An attractive walnut tea tray will turn that lovely ottoman into a small-footprint coffee table that can also be used as additional seating.
DEFINE SPACE WITHIN SPACE
The way you arrange your living zones will help define the purpose of each space. A curtain or open shelving can create separation between sleeping and sitting areas. Rugs help create zones and define each nook, instead of giving the impression of one blurred, multifunctional room. Create separate spots for working, reading and entertaining by enhancing the sense of separation with rugs, a wallpaper feature, or a lightweight screen as a room divider.
ADD STYLE TO SMALL SPACES
Your overall goal is to avoid visual clutter. That applies to what’s on your walls as well. Too many frames can make the walls feel like they’re closing in on you. Focus on just one piece of colorful artwork instead — such as a large-scale print, a vibrant photograph, an abstract painting or hand-woven rug. Large works of art can be the defining element of a small space, tying together a color scheme and creating a single focal point that anchors other items in the room. Wall sconces add ambience, illumination and functional style without eating up valuable floor space. They can be used to showcase the art and brighten enclosed spaces.
OPEN THINGS UP WITH WINDOW TREATMENTS
Hanging drapes close to ceiling moldings trick the eye into thinking ceilings are higher. Floor-to-ceiling draperies also make windows appear taller and wider. The curtain fabrics you choose can also create an illusion of larger space. Fabrics with vertical patterns add height. Floor-to-ceiling sheer white curtains not only lengthen a room; they brighten it as well. You can also replace Venetian blinds with vertical blinds or shades to maintain window functionality. But if even long, flowing or vertically shaped window treatments make your small room feel too cramped, consider eliminating window treatments entirely. Open windows give the room a minimalist charm and maximize natural light.
CONSIDER SHELVING FOR SMALL SPACES
Closet organization is a must for any size home and especially for smaller spaces. Create a shelving system for shoes, bags and folded items to hange under your garments. You can even tuck a small, clean-lined bookshelf into the bottom of the closet to take advantage of vertical space.
PAINT WALLS WHITE
Or any light, neutral color — ivory, beige, straw, a rich cream or light gray. Lighter colored walls add an airy lightness that makes any small room feel more spacious. Adding a contrasting color to the trim will bring vivid life to your small space.
ADD COLOR WITH FLOWERS
Flowers work wonders in small spaces. You can always change the colors and styles, but they add life and impact in vases, small planters and window boxes. For a touch of green, tuck a fiddle-leaf fig in the corner, or line up tiny pots of succulents on a windowsill.
STYLE WITH ACCESSORIES
Your space should evolve with you. It isn’t always convenient or in the budget to buy new furniture. Make changes to fit your mood with pillows and accents. Mix and match colors and patterns to create a brand-new room feeling.
EMBRACE THE SPACE YOU HAVE
Having a somewhat smaller kitchen is no problem when you also have a full dining services staff and multiple dining venues available to you. There’s no need to clutter your home with fitness equipment of any kind when a fully equipped fitness center is just outside your door. Socializing with friends and meeting for meals is now easier than ever, with dedicated spaces and no preparation or cleanup needed from you.