Decorating Small Spaces for Maximum Functionality

You can make your space feel bigger than its square footage with these tips

Credit: Terry Guscott

Maximizing the light your small space receives will make it feel bigger than it is

Living in a smaller place doesn’t need to feel cramped. Use these decorating tips to optimize the room you have

Try these tips to make the most of a limited living area.

  1. Find a perfect fit: Take the time to search for and select pieces that meet all your decor criteria (size, design, usability) and that can be multifunctional, such as furniture that can double as storage. Although it can take some time to find the perfect piece, the hunt is worthwhile once you find an item that fits seamlessly into your home.
  2. Play with colours: Using a single colour to paint the ceiling and walls of a room gives the illusion of a larger space, since one cohesive hue tricks the eye into seeing the surfaces of the room as a series of continuous planes. Choosing a pastel shade or lighter tone of a monochromatic colour will give the room an even more spacious feel.
  3. Less is more: With limited space to decorate, filling a room with unnecessary items results in an overcrowded and cluttered area. Focus on pieces that fit your design esthetic, but aren’t just taking up space. Resist the urge to continue adding knick-knacks, as they detract from the functionality of your space.
  4. Accentuate the positive: Incorporate lighting – both natural and electric – into your design. Organize sofas and chairs so they receive sunlight during the day and invest in appropriately bright lights for nighttime hours. Maximizing the light your place gets will make it feel bigger.
  5. Get creative: Every living space has an awkward corner or inaccessible nook that requires a creative touch. Shop around for one-of-a-kind decorations or storage units that will highlight the natural lines of the home and make an overlooked space a point of interest.

Originally published in BC Home magazine. For monthly updates, subscribe to the free BC Home e-newsletter, or purchase a subscription to the bi-monthly magazine.