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Small Space Living

06 July 2012

For reasons such as premium property prices, location and amenities or general upkeep, many of us these days are living in homes that are smaller than we would like. Smaller spaces are generally seen in negative terms. No doubt it is harder to accommodate the occupiers’ needs and belongings when space is limited. However there are benefits to small space living. They are more economical households to run, cleaning and upkeep is easier and less time consuming, and with less surfaces to consider home décor is more affordable in terms of materials and products. 

Most of us suffer from limited space in some way in our homes. From lack of storage in our kitchens or wardrobes through to disorganised home offices and children’s playrooms, space is at a premium and we need to get smarter around how we use it. There are many ways to optimise on the space that we do have, whilst at the same time not compromising on the look and feel of the room. Perhaps think about the following points if you are looking to renovate or re-decorate a room in your home where space is limited.

•Consider the whole space, try and make rooms multi-functional such as a more open plan space where you cook, eat and relax.

•Create a home office area in your living space, there are some clever solutions out there to build-in desks into already existing shelving, small alcoves or under stairs.

•Use built-in solutions wherever possible, this will always make the most of the space you have. 

•Maximise storage space, under bed, behind doors, inside ottomans, and under stairs. The can be custom built to get the best out of the space.

•Store larger items closer to the ground, and decrease the height between shelves as you move upwards.

•Every piece of furniture and appliance should be functional and used on a regular basis, otherwise it is just taking up valuable space.

•When selecting furniture ensure that the scale works well, for instance the living room depends on the right sized sofa. Purchase something that will allow room for side tables, lamps and space to walk around it. Also sofa’s that are raised on legs with smaller arms make the room look bigger.

•Use lighter colours in your furniture and on the walls which will help reflect light, wallpapers and surfaces with shiny finishes will assist here. 

It’s important to work out how to make a smaller home best work for you. Just because your space is small, this doesn’t mean that it can’t be inspiring, inventive as well as efficient . A great website to take inspiration from is These guys focus on apartment living, and often have articles dedicated to small space living. So be inspired, enjoy your cosy space and best of all share it with others. 


By Anoushka Allum, Interior Design & Owner, SmartSpace Interiors