The thought of “minimizing” or “downsizing” might seem daunting, even anxiety-producing to some people, but it’s actually not as difficult as it sounds – with a few handy tricks up your sleeve. Below, we’re sharing our best tips for maximizing space in your home, whether you’re moving into a new smaller place, trying to live more simply, or just want to use your rooms efficiently. Read on for five foolproof ways to make the most out of any space.
- Adopt the lifesaver that is wall-mounted shelving.
Don’t get us wrong, we love a good, solid antique bookshelf, but more furniture equals more clutter, simple as that. Wall-mounted shelves add storage without adding bulk to the room. In fact, when used to display your favorite books and keepsakes, they can even replace the need for artwork. Try them in white on a white wall to keep the space feeling as light and open as possible.
- Buy multi-functional furniture whenever possible.
If there was one magic fix-all trick to making your home feel bigger, it would have to be employing multi-use furniture. Almost every piece of furniture you bring into your home can have multiple purposes, but it’s up to you how much you want to embrace this space saving trick. Ottomans that open like boxes with secret storage inside are one of the most obvious examples of this concept, but there are tons of clever designs out there, including full-length mirrors that house hidden shelving and chairs with built-in bookshelves.
We are also big fans of using trunks as tables wherever appropriate, and purchasing rolling furniture, such as a shelving cart, that can easily transform from storage to a portable bar. Another added bonus of multi-purpose furniture is that you have the option to easily rearrange your home at a moment’s notice, always keeping the space feeling fresh.
- Consider introducing dark paint colors.
The standard logic on this topic is that lighter colors make a space feel bigger and more open. While this is mostly true, don’t completely rule out the ability of dark colors to extend your space. One of the best ways to bring darker, richer colors into your home is to paint one wall of the room dark, keeping the others white. This adds a sense of depth to the space, and also highlights the white areas of the room. Plus, it’s fun to add a little variety and contrast to your space.
- Keep furniture big.
This one might sound counter-intuitive, but having miniaturized furniture can actually make everything feel smaller, shrinking the space. Even if you’re working with a small area, stick to full-sized furniture. This breaks up the room into bigger blocks, instead of cluttering it with lots of smaller pieces.
- Embrace spring cleaning.
It’s obvious, but it’s true. No matter how many sneaky storage containers you buy, maximizing your space at home ultimately means keeping the stuff in that space down to a minimum. Pausing before making a new purchase (do I actually have room for this? Where will it go?) is key, as is an annual (or even seasonal) deep cleanse.
It’s amazing how much unnecessary clutter can be acquired in a year. Be ruthless – have you used or worn or smiled about that item in the last year? If not, then it’s time to say goodbye. We promise you’ll feel lighter and fresher going into the summer season, and your home will feel bigger to boot.