Furnishing the Small Spaces in your Home
Even the grandest of dwellings include small spaces that, when ideally decorated, make a house into a home. Small homes, apartments, and condos have unique space challenges that require a strategic approach throughout to make the most of all available space.
Here are a few ideas on furnishing small spaces in your home.
Adding an attic room allows you to expand the usable space in your home. Whether you use it for an extra bedroom, a conversation area, game room, office, or teen hang out, the options are virtually unlimited. A pitched roof is likely to play a part in your design, creating challenges with tight headspace on at least a couple of walls. To remedy this issue, keep standing areas to the center of the room and place deep furniture like cabinets, desks, and entertainment centers toward the walls.
When placing seating in an attic room, keep the seating away from low ceiling areas so that people don’t hit their heads when standing up. If you are placing a bed against a slanted ceiling, choose a bed frame with a deep headboard, like a sleigh bed or a bookcase bed for this same reason.
As a spot to sit with your coffee and read the morning paper or spend time visiting with an afternoon guest, a breakfast nook extends the use of your kitchen. Often a bistro table in a sunny corner of the kitchen creates the perfect perch, providing a casual space to relax and start the day or grab a quick bite of food at any time. If you have a bit more space, a roomier rectangular table with a bench or banquet can stay tucked away and won’t put a damper on the comings and goings in a busy household. The biggest challenge in a breakfast nook is to provide an appropriate table and seating space without inhibiting the traffic flow through the kitchen. Pieces that can fit close to the wall or a corner usually fit best. Casual furniture works well in a breakfast nook to match the tone set in your kitchen. While soft neutrals can help keep a breakfast nook understated, a pop of color can add vibrancy to a kitchen that needs a pick-me-up.
The gateway into and out of your home, the front entryway greets your guests and sends you off to work in the morning. An area rug provides a welcoming splash of color and pattern while stopping incoming dirt and dust in its tracks. Add an accent bench as a helpful seat for putting on and taking off shoes at the door or a console table as a spot for interesting decor items and a place to hold keys and mail. A decorative mirror lets you have one last look at yourself on your way out the door before you take on the day.
Hallways are often overlooked as spaces to add a stylish flourish and a little functionality. An area rug or runner creates softness underfoot while providing the opportunity to add color and pattern to the hallway. Don’t forget the walls; hanging a decorative mirror brightens a windowless hallway, while wall decor is another chance to add some flair. Any hallway that has a little extra width or a nook at the end can benefit from a bench, accent cabinet, or even a bookcase.
When space is an issue, furnishing a spot for cocktails doesn’t have to be expansive. A streamlined home bar with a few shelves to store stemware, bottles and accessories is all that is needed. An open bar with barstools can take up very little physical and visual space. But if you don’t have even that amount of room to spare a fully stocked bar cabinet or cart in the corner of the dining room will do. Whether your style is modern or traditional adding a home bar to an empty space in your home helps you entertain with ease.
If it is the quiet times with a good book that you relish, setting up a cozy spot in a well-lit corner of your home will let you relax and dive in. Simply appointed with a comfy arm chair, a small accent table, and a good light will provide a reading nook that will foster hours of enjoyment. Reading nooks are ideal by a window for optimum natural light in the day. But when the sun goes down or there is now window around, a quality lamp illuminates and adds style to any space.
Make the most of even the smallest porch or patio with a bistro set. Create a spot to enjoy coffee and the paper, a quick lunch al fresco, catch up with your neighbors, or relax and watch the birds. By furnishing an outdoor room, you’ve extended the usable space of your home and given yourself a room with a view. Look for weatherproof pieces that will provide years of enjoyment despite the elements. Those with traditional tastes will enjoy intricate wrought iron or classic teak pieces, contemporary homeowners can look for streamlined all-weather wicker or cast aluminum sets.
With an attentive and strategic approach to furnishing the small spaces in your home, you’ll add new beauty and functionality to your life. Finding the right fit for your house and lifestyle will help you make the most of your space for many years to come.