When you live in a small space, fitting in everything you need in it is difficult. Trying to fit everything in and making it look cute is an even bigger challenge, but that’s what makes small space design so thrilling. Whether you live in a studio apartment or want to get more out of a tiny room, these small space design ideas will make it feel so much larger while maintaining style.
Shrink Your Dining Table
Small round tables aren’t just for breakfast nooks. Ditch the giant dining table and give yourself some extra space by opting for a small, round dining table instead.
When space is limited and you don’t want to shop for new, bulky furniture, use a chair as a side table and install wall sconces to save surface space. A cheerful color, like this pale turquoise hue, is also a good idea to set a happy mood in a tiny room
Opt for Pocket Doors
Pocket doors with glass windows allow for shared light to flow throughout the space while also creating separation. And even better, they slide right into the wall when not being used, taking up much less space than swinging doors.
Use a Day Bed
Add a day bed and watch your bedroom double in size. If you don’t have a designated guest room, this could also come in handy in your living room.
Mount Your TV
A media console is the biggest space waster in a small living room. Mount your TV on the wall or above a fireplace and you’ll regain necessary floor space.
Do Double Duty
Pieces that can serve multiple purposes are key: Find a table that can function as a desk and dining table, get a deep sofa that can double as a guest bed, or buy cubes that serve as a coffee table and bonus seats when guests are over.
It’s the oldest design trick in the book: Mirrors will make your space feel larger, lighter, and airier. And a fun convex one like this adds a lot of personality without taking up a ton of space.
Make Every Piece Count
Choose furnishings that offer maximum functionality in minimal square footage. For example, instead of an end bench, opt for a desk with a small side chair. You can use it for work, getting ready, and more.
Keep It Neutral
Calm, even-toned rooms fool the eye into thinking they’re more spacious than they are. Make sure to add a variety of textures to keep the space from falling flat.
Bespoke built-ins, storage nooks, and furniture tailored to your exact needs can utilize every available sliver of space. When they’re part of the walls, you don’t lose nearly as much valuable square footage. And extra storage under a bench helps, too.
In interior designer Max Sinsteden’s studio, he made his sleep zone feel separate from the rest of the room by hanging a super high curtain and then suspending a floating painting to break it off even more. “I hate seeing a bed from the front door, so I added a curtain to partition that space. When you close it, you honestly feel like you’re in a Parisian hotel,” he tells us. This means you can entertain, too, without feeling like everyone’s hanging out in your bedroom. “A small space doesn’t hamper me from inviting 50 people over.”
Use All Available Surface Space
Even a windowsill can provide extra storage space for decor, lighting, and other essentials when there’s no room for an extra table.
Get a Wall Desk
Think you have no room for an office? Think again. A mounted wall desk takes up way less room—and you can even mount shelves above it for even more storage space.
Use Strategic Seating
Opt for extra seating that can fold up and be super compact so you can store it away while the guests aren’t over. A stool like this one in a living room designed by Hecker Guthrie is perfect.
Use Bigger But Fewer Furnishings
It may seem counterintuitive, but outfitting a small space with just a few large-scale pieces (rather than a mishmash of pint-size furniture) can actually make it feel grander. Resist the urge to push all of your furniture up against the walls. If you create space behind the furniture, it makes the room look wider than it is.
Go Big in a Small Space
It’s easy to overlook a room when it’s super tiny, especially because there simply isn’t enough useable space for décor. But it’s definitely possible—and well worth it—to elevate and personalize these little rooms. Take this powder room in Ailana Michelle Ralph’s home, for example. With a light blush pink wall color and a surrounding gallery of eclectic artwork, the small room packs a lot of punch.
Exploit the often under-utilized space between the tops of furniture and a room’s ceiling with hanging or high-mounted elements. Take bookcases and cabinets all the way up—it’ll make the room feel higher.
Forgo Bulky Pieces
Though the under-the-sink storage can be great, larger vanities with a lot of drawers and cabinets can end up looking oversized and awkward in small spaces. In this bathroom designed by Studio DB, the dainty marble vanity has plenty of surface space and the extra towel tracks and hooks take care of the storage needs.
Build a Partial Glass Wall
Tear down walls, enlarge windows, or swap solid doors for glass to open up views and connect adjacent spaces
Incorporate Good Lighting
Good lighting will make or break any room–big or small. Make sure to especially install good lighting in smaller, cramped spaces like a bathroom with a tiny window, as shown in this gorgeous space by designer Corey Damen Jenkins.
Being a minimalist can go a long way! You don’t have to display everything. After all, nothing makes a room feel smaller than clutter.