Design Tips for Small Spaces

Published on
February 3, 2022 at 1:30:00 PM PST February 3, 2022 at 1:30:00 PM PSTrd, February 3, 2022 at 1:30:00 PM PST



Regina Andrew Noble Swing Arm Task Sconce

In today's urban living, compact spaces have become the new norm, presenting us with unique challenges when it comes to effective styling. Whether you reside in a cozy studio apartment, a compact city condo, or a charming tiny house, making the most of your limited square footage through efficient design is key to crafting a functional and visually appealing sanctuary. This article explores strategies that will help you achieve just that.

Regina Andrew Perennial Floor Lamp

Maximize Floor Space

Imagine your room as an empty canvas, and you'll notice the potential it holds. Now, take a look at it as it is, and identify any underutilized spaces. One crucial factor in small spaces is height. Every piece of furniture matters, but an abundance of it can lead to a cramped and suffocating feel.

Consider dressers, for instance. They are essential for bedroom storage, especially when closet space is limited. However, they can be bulky and occupy valuable floor space. Instead, opt for taller and slimmer furniture pieces that capitalize on the room's height. Embrace multipurpose furniture and lighting, like floor lamps with built-in tabletops or coffee tables with storage underneath. By utilizing every inch of vertical space, you can create a more open and airy atmosphere.

Regina Andrew Canal Mirror

Create Illusions of Space

Clever design techniques can work wonders in making a small space feel more expansive. A great starting point is incorporating mirrors. Mirrors are fantastic tools for creating the illusion of depth, visually expanding your room. Place a mirror strategically in an area with ample natural light to allow it to bounce and open up the room. Another effective technique is embracing a monochromatic color scheme.

Large statement pieces with dark colors may make a small space feel even smaller. Instead, focus on multiple shades of the same color to create a seamless flow and make the room appear more cohesive. When dealing with larger open areas, like lofts or studio apartments, consider creating room zones.

You can achieve this with an open console table that serves as a light and non-obstructive visual divider between different spaces. Additionally, use furniture, rugs, or consoles to create distinct zones within your room. For windows, an integral part of any home, hang floor-length sheer curtains to add an illusion of height while allowing natural light to flood in. Opt for lighter colors in your room to enhance the play of light and prevent it from being absorbed by darker hues.

If you don’t have a good amount of natural light coming from windows, opt for space-saving lighting such as wall sconces and picture lights to add depth.

Regina Andrew Anastasia Cocktail Table

Furniture Placement and Layout

The layout of each room may differ, be it your living room or bedroom. However, some basic rules can guide you. Simplicity is key. Avoid overcrowding your space with too many pieces of furniture, as this can hinder its functionality. Instead, focus on the most crucial furniture pieces for each room and prioritize those.

In small bedrooms, the bed is usually the largest piece of furniture. Make it the focal point by using textured pillows and calming neutral tones to create a standout appeal. In living rooms, opt for small side tables instead of a coffee table to create a more open ambiance. Consider using wall sconces for lighting to free up floor and table space for additional storage.

Regina Andrew Nantucket Sconce

Creative Use of Lighting

Lighting plays a significant role in enhancing small spaces. Dark and poorly-lit areas can make a room feel claustrophobic, whereas well-lit spaces give an impression of airiness and brightness. Combat this by incorporating multiple light sources. Different light fixtures can add depth and make the room feel larger.

Start with a large pendant or chandelier as your primary light source. Then, identify areas that require task lighting and add ambient light to illuminate the entire space. Mix and match various fixtures, such as lamps and wall sconces, to achieve the desired effect. If installing new fixtures is not feasible, consider using pin-up sconces that can be easily plugged in.

Regina Andrew Happy Sconce

Embrace Minimalism

In small spaces, embracing minimalism can work wonders in creating a more expansive look. Regular decluttering and organizing of belongings maintain a clean and open environment, as everything on display contributes to your home's decor. Opt for streamlined furniture with clean lines and hidden storage compartments.

Keep your decor simple and intentional, focusing on a few well-chosen pieces that contribute to the overall aesthetic. If you possess a remarkable collection, such as dishes or artwork, organize and display them in a tidy manner to infuse your smaller space with character and charm.

Regina Andrew Candice Mirror

Incorporating Optical Illusions

Optical illusions can be fascinating elements in small space design. The paint you use on your walls can play a pivotal role in achieving these effects. For example, stripes and patterns, whether on walls or rugs, can create an illusion of length or width. Vertical stripes can make the ceiling appear higher, while horizontal stripes can make a room feel wider.

Moreover, using curtains or drapes that extend from ceiling to floor can make windows appear larger, creating a sense of grandeur. These subtle tricks can add depth to your space and leave a lasting impression of a more expansive area.


Designing small spaces requires careful thought and consideration, but with the right strategies, you can create a functional and visually appealing environment that maximizes every square foot. By implementing these design tips, you can transform your small space into a stylish and inviting haven that perfectly suits your lifestyle.

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