Written by Aurélie Tshiama
Image by @archdigest
The magic of décor is that you can create a space and bring it to the design standard you want via the tiny details. You can also accentuate the spaces on the smaller side using a range of tips and tricks. I’ll take you through four methods to consider when wanting to elevate your small space.
A pre-tip before we go into the main three is to measure your space. Your floorplan Is your blueprint to knowing what to do and what not to do with your design.
So, a little story. I remember when I had an on-site consultation, and one of the rooms I had to investigate was the master bedroom. It was quaint in size and the bed took up 90% of the space offered. The client explicitly wanted to keep the bed. As you can imagine, and it goes without saying that that bed is long gone now, haha. Now, with your measurements all noted, you must make sure the furniture you choose is in scale with the space it’s installed in.
For example, like our client, should your bedroom be on the smaller side, it wouldn’t be fruitful getting a queen-sized bed and having only 5 steps of walking space. An alternative is maybe to opt for a large double bed where you’ll be able to fit in a chest of drawers or even a desk.
Keeping in the context of the bedroom, where your space is limited, opt for pieces of furniture that can double up as storage for e.g., ottoman beds and wall décor/shelving.
When thinking about your colour scheme, remember this: if you want a coffin, think dark. If you want a palace, think light.Now with that in mind, as we are focusing on smaller-sized rooms, you want to make sure you choose a light colour palette. If you’re painting your walls, my personal recommendation would be the colour Fresh Narcissus by Valspar or Shaded White by Farrow and Ball. Those colours bounce light off the walls so amazingly, giving your space the illusion of being far bigger than it is.
Smaller spaces usually have one window or smaller-sized windows, so the challenge is to exaggerate that natural light into your room. Dark colours absorb light and make your space feel flatter. So yes, I know you’d love Navy Blue painted all over your walls, but remember, if you want a coffin, think dark. This rule of thumb generally applies to smaller spaces. Rooms that are much larger in size have the luxury of looking good no matter the colour palette.
This naturally brings me to lighting. Minimal and low-profile lighting is best. You don’t want to use “in your face” lighting, especially if naturally, your small space has a low ceiling. Imagine walking into your bedroom and being slapped in the face by your 90cm diameter crystal chandelier. All in the name of luxury? Hun…
I find fixing flush lighting to replace certain shadow forms in your room. For example, installing LED strips under wall-hung shelves.
Spotlights are my best recommendation for your ceiling lights, but if you really want a drop light, a single wire pendant used as bedside lights is a smart move too. Your bulb colour is as important as the fixture you use too. Warm lighting always for your home, specifically 3000-3500k bulbs, or if at work, opt for bulbs with more whiter lighting between 3500 and 6000k.
4. I’ll add in a fourth tip that you mustn’t forget: mirrors. In your small space, use one of your walls to occupy a mirror, up to floor-length in size. Position it on any wall (except the wall opposite your primary source of light aka the window with the most natural light) and watch what happens.