Whether you live in an apartment, sold your house for a condo in the city or simply have smaller rooms in your home, decorating areas with limited space can be a challenge. But by following some simple rules, you can easily utilize the space you have while still projecting your personal style.
“Small rooms are not lost space,” comments Shari Kagermeier, academic director of interior design, The Art Institutes International Minnesota. “Planning ahead ensures the room is functional and utilizes organizational elements that can cut the clutter to create a clean look that makes the space appear larger.”
Here are some ideas to consider when decorating a small room:
Think about what function you want the room to have. Will it be a guest bedroom, an office, a reading den or an exercise room? Once you determine how the room can function, you can start deciding on furniture and other decorative elements.
Nothing makes a small room look smaller than clutter. A wall full of pictures or tables full of magazines give the visual effect that the room can’t hold everything that it should, and therefore looks smaller in size. Remember that openness and neatness create a space that looks larger.
The key to choosing furniture is to make sure it is size appropriate and multifunctional. Overstuffed chairs and couches are better for larger rooms while a loveseat or rocking chair might be better for small spaces. Measure the room before you choose furniture to make sure it will fit.
Also look for pieces that serve multiple purposes so you can stay organized and remove clutter. End tables and shelves often have built-in drawers for storage. Even couches are multifunctional. For example, Natuzzi offers sofas that have a comfortable pull-out bed without the typical center support bar. Additionally, the sleeper sofas are designed for easy opening and a clutter-free sleeping space. Not only do the upholstered components remain attached to the bed as it unfolds, but built into the sofa frame are storage areas for pillows, linens or other useful items.
Accent pieces are a good place to add color and patterns to your small room. From casual-country to Asian-infused, develop your room theme through the decorative details. Remember to minimize decorative pieces to eliminate a messy look. A vase, one piece of wall artwork and several accent pillows will add a lot of style without overdoing it.
A small room needs to be adequately lit because light does a lot to visually open up space. If you are able, consider built-in lighting such as track or recessed elements. If not, use lamps that are smaller sizes and do not have large shades.
Thick and heavy curtains keep out the natural light, so light and airy curtains are key for smaller rooms. Another popular trick is to decorate with mirrors. This not only makes the space appear larger, it helps reflect the light throughout the room.
Dark colors and intricate designs are not suitable for the walls of smaller rooms. When painting, choose a lighter color that opens up the wall space and also reflects the light in the room.
It’s not a bad idea to coordinate color palettes so that the other elements of the room match the walls. Carpet and furniture in the same tones blend the visual flow and trick the eye, making the room appear larger. Companies such as Natuzzi offer a variety of colors and fabrics to choose from. With over 200 colors of leather, 100 different fabric types and 60 options of microfiber, you can customize a sofa to perfectly match your room.