When you’re living in a compact home, it’s important to make the most of small spaces by optimising storage within living areas. There are many ways of doing this, from bespoke built-in storage, to furniture that’s tailored to meet your exact needs.
The secret is to strike a fine balance between maximising space, without making the room appear cluttered. Your interior design needs to make sure all the available space is used – but in the right way.
One of the main things to remember is to think vertically, rather than horizontally. You can increase your storage space by adding a bank of extra-tall shelves, while you can also exploit the often under-used space between the tops of furniture and the ceiling with high-mounted cupboards.
Take cabinets and bookcases all the way up to the ceiling, rather than leaving space above them. Apart from creating extra storage space, another benefit of vertical shelves or cabinets is that they can create an eye-catching focal point for the room.
When you’re planning to display special items, tall shelves can be the ideal way to go if you’re short on floor space.
The space under the stairs is often overlooked in terms of storage, yet it has bags of potential. It can be used as a traditional cupboard, with coat hooks and space for outdoor wear including boots, shoes, umbrellas, overcoats and work items, such as briefcases. It can also be used to store your vacuum cleaner, school bags, sports kit bags and just about anything else.
For a more dramatic look, it can be fitted out with built-in drawers, rather than a traditional cupboard door. These can be used for all sorts of items. Depending on the size of the area, it can usually accommodate between three and six drawers and often a tallboy unit as well.
Another option is to create a second bathroom under the stairs. Some space will accommodate a WC and wash-basin, while a larger space can also accommodate a slim-line shower.
Open up spaces
When you live in a more compact home, there are various tricks of the trade to give the appearance of more space by simply opening up the views and connecting spaces. This requires a little more work, but it can be worth it for the final results.
Tear down walls to create larger, open-plan rooms. Enlarge the windows to let in more light and create panoramic views. Swap solid doors for glass ones and have bi-fold doors that open directly on to the garden to create a feeling of space and a seamless transition between indoor and outdoor areas.
Surrounding yourself with mirrors can create an illusion of extra space – especially if you put a large mirror on either side of a narrow hall, or on opposite walls of a box room.
Hang ’em high!
Another trick of the trade to create a feeling of space is to hang your curtain rail very close to the ceiling – preferably only a few inches down. Interior designers agree this is the most effective way of making your ceiling appear higher and thus making the room appear larger.
In addition, you can also extend the rod around four inches on either side and have plain, classic curtains, rather than the distraction of bold patterns.
Invest in furniture that is practical, as well as aesthetically pleasing. For example, a divan bed will have ample storage space underneath for bedding, clothing, towels, or pretty much anything you wish to store there. Choose fitted furniture that can create a bespoke saving solution, even for your smallest bedroom.
A bed settee can enable you to have a double bed at night, while opening up your room into a sitting room with a comfy settee during the day.
Finally, when considering colour schemes for your décor, a pale, neutral theme tends to open up a room, while dark or bold shades can tend to make you feel more closed in.
Furniture Pack Solutions can help if you’re a landlord who’s refurbishing a property to let. Thanks to our selection of furniture packages, we can supply student room packages, HMO furniture packages and bespoke furniture packages to help you make the most of your available space at a cost-effective price.
If you’re interested in finding out more, contact us for further details.