Small living spaces need to be so much more versatile – you might have both living and dining space in one room or need to include a home office into your living room. Whatever the challenges, we have a five tips on how to make the most of your space.

1 Make the most of your room layout

One of the first things we do as interior designers starting a project, is consider the room flow. Think about who uses the room, which areas are used the most and at what time of day – avoid pushing all furniture against the walls just because its a smaller room. You can smartly divide the function of a room up by using furniture grouped into areas but consider where you walk the most and don’t block this flow with unnecessary pieces. Rugs will act as an anchor for your furniture so make sure these are as big as possible to help with the illusion of space – it is easy to choose furniture, rugs and accessories on a smaller scale because the room is, but this will only make the room seem smaller so choose a few larger pieces of furniture as a starting point.

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2 Decorate with lighter colours

Lighter colours lift a room and make it seem bigger. If this is your only living and entertaining space, keep it pale with simple clean lines at the windows in order to maximise all light coming into the room. Most natural light comes in from the top part of each window so place less over the windows opting for curtains rather than blinds to maximise this. It is easier to add colour with your accessories – pillows, throws, plants and books are the quickest and of course, the most personal way.

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3 Don’t forget the walls

Pictures, paintings and mirrors are a fantastic way to add height to a room without relying on the furniture. Its difficult to add height interest in a room where there is limited space for furniture, so instead turn to your walls. Mirrors are a good way to bounce light around the room which is an added benefit – either mix smaller mirrors in with your art or opt for a large statement mirror for impact. If you don’t have larger pieces of art, group together prints and pictures and try to stick with one or two different frame styles and colours in order to balance the style.

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4 Double use furniture is important

If a piece of furniture can perform more than one duty in the room, its ideal. Opt for upholstered dining chairs which can be pulled into your living area for extra seating, low bookshelves have the added benefit of creating extra counter space for display, opt for window seats with storage below, a side table high enough to double up as a desk or hang shelves from the wall freeing up floor space. Storage is always key no matter how big or small your room, so its important to maximise this.

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5 Declutter

If it has no sentimental value and has no function in the room, you need to get rid of it or move it to another area. Start by keeping only the pieces of furniture you absolutely need or pieces you love too much to get rid of. Group items together especially if they are similar in style, for example photo frames or coffee table books. They will have more impact this way and will also look less like clutter and more like a design statement.

Have a happy week-end!

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