Find out how to turn your compact home into the sanctuary you’d want to rush back to at the end of the day, no matter how small it is.
The trend towards compact, urban homes has grown in tandem with a steady rate of urbanisation around the world – resulting in our first homes often being on the relatively cosy side. But no matter how big or small your house is, a home is still a home – beyond going minimalist with your décor, there are many different ways of transforming a small space into a spacious and luxurious haven.
What better way is there to trick your eyes into thinking your home is more spacious than it actually is? Mirrors are one of the few ancient luxuries that modern technology has done little to change – possibly due to their effectiveness in reflecting light and enlarging perceived space. Devoting a stretch of wall to a generous display of mirrored panels not only visually expands a room, the reflective surfaces extend the reach of natural light and cast a luxurious sheen that evolves with the time of day.
Instead of opting for conventional furniture that occupy valuable floor space, consider mounting planks edgewise against the wall to serve as shelves and working surfaces. These minimalist fixtures takes up considerably less space and look aesthetically appealing when saturated in pale shades or when used to present intricate decorative objects.
Drapes soften the hard edges of a room, especially in corners and around window frames. Lace curtains are especially effective at making any space appear roomier due to their transparency. The placement of the curtain’s tracks also affect the proportions of a room – when you mount a curtain rod or rail further away from the ceiling, the height of the room is exaggerated and an illusion of seemingly taller walls is created. If you aren’t into lace, consider opting for sheer cotton or silk curtains – avoid selecting thicker materials as their weight makes a space look smaller.
Cool, neutral, and calm-toned walls make a space feel lighter and more spacious. With a pale background, one should not be afraid to splash some colour on decorative pieces to serve as accents – throw pillows, wall decoration, souvenirs, or other small pieces of decoration would gift a space with small doses of bright colours and bold contrast.
While the open layout is appealing for the surprising sense of space and volume that results from the removal of non-load bearing walls, some who place themselves on the more restrained side of the spectrum of order and chaos prefer having some sense of demarcation. Glass walls or other transparent partitions provide a space with tangible barriers, while enabling the passage of natural light to saturate the space.
Let the outside in
Living in a small space sometimes leaves one feeling a little claustrophobic. To avoid unintentionally creating the ambience of a cave, and to reduce stress when returning home after a long day, potted plants should be seriously considered. Most indoor plants will greatly improve air quality and even faux greenery can inject vibes of natural chaos into your home.
Ditch traditional cupboards
Cupboards may seem like a necessity until one realises that they take up significantly more floor space than a hanging rack. Instead of stacking your cookery in a cupboard, where they have little opportunity to dry, why not to utilise that airspace by going rustic and hanging an elegant pot rack above the kitchen island?
Picking out furniture with smaller footprints would be helpful in your attempt to reclaim space – and given the evolution of decorative styles, this objective will likely lead you to furnishings made according to the minimalist aesthetic. Be on the lookout for simplistic lines, narrow frames, and thin profiles that help to create impressions of lightweight furniture.
Stylish in symmetry
For the same reason that a circle tends to take up more space than a square of a similar size, incorporating symmetry is an effective way of enhancing the perceived size and grandeur of any compact space. If a particular piece of furniture seems unusually large, try a symmetrical arrangement to make it appear less prominent and allow it to blend into the background.
Say yes to multi-functional furniture!
Thanks to rapid prototyping, these days, a sofa isn’t just a sofa. A multipurpose couch, and any other piece of furniture that can pull double-duty, or nest within another, helps to increase your usable space. These novel varieties of furniture may be tougher to find, but the benefits of that extra space certainly can’t be denied.