How can you make the most out of your living space?
With mobility on the rise and affordability getting worse, renters and homebuyers are frequently finding themselves living in tighter quarters than they’d like. Whether you desperately crave to make your current space bigger, make a new home work for your large family, or to maximize a rental or home for sale, check out these ideas…
1. Clear the Clutter
Clutter is a major space killer. Most of us have far more stuff than we’ll ever use. Much of it doesn’t do more than collect dust and take up space. As hard as it is – clear it out. Be tough on yourself. If you haven’t worn clothes in six months get rid of them. Put paperwork online and in the cloud. Hold a garage sale. And for those items you’ll really never use but still struggle to get rid o,f consider getting a small offsite storage unit.
Once you’ve cleared out your storage spaces, you can get even more out of your way into those spaces. Don’t overlook unused spaces like attics either. Then look for new storage spaces such as trunks and under the bed storage. The more you get up off of the floor, the more room it will feel like you have too. Instead of bookcases, go for elevated shelves. In fact, the creative will find ways to get whole rooms off the floor. Apply the loft concept to offices, sleeping areas, libraries, and lounging nooks.
The more natural light you can get in, the better. It may be hard to add more windows, but what about a skylight or extending current windows with an alcove. Brighter lights and lighting features can help too, so can new smart lighting. Use colored lights to change the ambience and create the feeling of whole new rooms without having to get up at all.
4. Mirrors, Mirrors, Mirrors
Mirrors are big for 2016. Ditch the ugly old ones and look for stylish new oversized mirrors to create the feel of dramatically larger spaces and more light. Consider chroming out your kitchen island to make it feel more spacious too.
5. Invisible Furniture
Carrying on from the above; the less your furniture invades on your space, the more room you’ll have and will appear you have. Transparent tables and chairs can make a huge difference and are definitely in style. Consider converting to a murphy bed so that the bedroom can double as a completely different room during the day. Low sitting chairs and sofas can make spaces feel larger too. Go for a Japanese or Moroccan style living and dining area design. Check out the living cube concept for trendy grown up style bunk beds with storage and entertainment centers underneath. Then maximize further by using opaque interior doors to reduce the feeling of being closed in.
6. Convertible Spaces
As mentioned above; murphy beds are well known for maximizing bedroom and guest room spaces. Apply this concept to other furniture items too. Kitchen tables, nightstands, desks, and more can all be folded out of sight when not in use, making spaces flexible for multiple purposes.
White is frequently the default for small spaces, but don’t limit yourself. Pantone has dubbed rose quartz and serenity blue as the colors of 2016. Both are light and can spice up your décor without having to stay bland.
8. Wall Art
2016 is all about wall art. Textured papers and unique designs can help give 3D illusions and therefore extra space, while designer paper from leading fashion houses can create great looking focal pieces without having to invade your space quarters.
Flooring can make all the difference in how large a room feels. This is specifically true for marbles and wood flooring. The direction and angles at which it is laid can make spaces feel larger or smaller, so strategize before you lay it.
10. Go Outdoors
Expand with outdoor rooms. This may be simply adding a wraparound porch or deck, creating outdoor seating areas for relaxing and entertaining, or get on the designer shed bandwagon. Shipping containers and modular offices provide great spaces to work from home without cramping the rest of the family. Innovative shed décor can turn the old gardening shed into a haven of tranquility for mom or a gaming studio for those noisy teens.
By choice or lack there of, many more people are living in smaller spaces and will continue to for the next few years. That doesn’t mean having to settle with being cramped. Here are at least 10 ways to make your place feel a lot larger and more enjoyable. Try them out.