Maximizing Small Spaces

Do you live in a cramped apartment? Have no fear, CFO is here! Living in small spaces can seem suffocating. We have some practical tips that will help you make the most of your small space without breaking the bank.

For starters, we suggest eliminating clutter. Seems pretty obvious, right? Use only a few items as center pieces to draw attention away from the size of the space and emphasize a few focus objects that your guests will marvel over.  On a similar note, just as we suggest getting rid of clutter, we also recommend not over accessorizing every shelf. Leaving empty space on shelving will help to open up the room by eliminating the cramped feeling that clutter can cause. If you fill up a shelf with too many center pieces, you are adding to the clutter that you’re trying to get rid of.

Multipurpose Furniture

Furniture is important when it comes to decorating a small space. When there isn’t a lot of room for furniture, using pieces with a multifunctional purpose can be key. Ottoman’s work great to double as an extra seat in the room when guests are visiting. You can even purchase ottomans that come with flip top cushions to turn the ottoman into an extra side table. Another helpful tip is to use furniture that has castors. A table with wheels can easily be rolled into place for use when needed or pushed out of the way when it’s not. This helps give you the space you want when you need it.

Bookshelf Lounger                                                                        Bookshelf Seating


Another trick to making a small space feel and appear larger is by adding a large mirror to a wall or using a set of several smaller ones. The reflection of the mirror will cause the space to seem larger than it is. Mind tricks do work!

Mirrors                                    Mirrors                                      Mirrors 3


It is important to be mindful of the colors you select when designing a small space. Using too many dark colors can close a space making them feel small and closed off. Stick to light and neutral colors, such as beige and off-whites, to help bring light to the space and allow it to feel more open. If you’re really itching for the dark side, try using a dark color on only one wall, as an accent wall. This will make the wall look like its receding and will create a bigger feel to the space. Don’t be afraid of bold colors. Remember, when selecting colors, this goes for not only the walls but, the furniture and draperies as well. If you use draperies the same color as the wall, you can also create the feeling of a bigger room.


Do not underestimate the power of natural light. If you are fortunate to have windows in the space you are decorating, keep the blinds or draperies open to allow as much natural light into the room as possible. It makes the room feel light and airy creating the feeling of more space. Without natural light, the right choice for light fixtures can also be critical; there is such a thing as too much and too little light. Using over-sized pieces will cause the room to feel heavy. Stick to smaller fixtures and place them in areas of the room that will be most beneficial for lighting.


By: Julie Geist

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