The sentimental saying “Home is Where the Heart is” holds such truth especially when it comes to personalizing and dressing up the place you live in. Whether your home is a house with a back yard, an edgy loft or an uptown studio, style and décor are never limited by spatial boundaries.
There are common misconceptions that in decorating small spaces, almost everything has to be kept minimal and walls should be plain and white to make the space look larger. The truth is contrasting colors, textures and well selected pieces can expand your space into a vast area. The advantage to decorating apartments, lofts and studios is that since you are working with a more limited space and key items make a world of difference, a smaller budget can go a long way.
The Beginning Steps
Just like starting a painting on a canvas it is easier to start with a blank page then try to re-work an already painted piece. This doesn’t necessarily mean getting rid of everything you may already have, but before designing, de-clutter as much as possible. Sort out items such as picture frames, vases, candles, lamps or furniture you may want to keep and re-use. This will also help in deciding the theme to your space.
The old saying of keeping your walls white to increase space is a myth! There are no rules when it comes to selecting the colors for your space. Start by planning your color placement on your walls first. Lighter colors opposing light sources (windows) and/or darker walls visually open up an environment. Keep your palette choices to sharper more saturated colors. Dull colors, even when in lighter shades, can diminish the liveliness of an area. If your apartment happens to have a hallway or walkway painting it a darker color than the room it leads into can make the room appear bigger.
Once you have the walls planned out, the fun part is embellishing and accenting with more colors. Window sills, an old radiator, and even floor vents can complement the room’s aesthetic with a fun shade of paint. Match cohesive pieces to tie in the design like having throw pillows that match with a lampshade.
Similarly to how lighting opens up a back yard and highlights varying textures, inside a smaller space, light can also reveal a landscape of details. Well placed mirrors not only give the illusion of larger room, but it also helps direct and reflect light. Sheer window curtains or Venetian blinds allow slivers of light to gently highlight areas of your room. Railed lighting along your ceiling is the perfect way to light up the entire space or direct lighting towards paintings or pictures that adorn your wall.
Furnishing and Accessorizing
When it comes to fleshing out your interior, don’t rely on furnishing alone. Accessories can go a long way. To make the most use of your space and to avoid clutter, try purchasing furniture that serves a double purpose. For example, rather than using a coffee table, purchase an ottoman than can open up to store magazines, remotes or throw blankets and have a sleek serving try on top if you wish to place refreshments on it. Old trunks not only provide a classic and rustic accent, but they are versatile in their functions. Trunks can act as tables, storage facilities for blankets and pillows, and if you place cushions on top, they can also act as a bench. Many armoires can be used as both a unit for your TV, and storage for items in the drawers.
Decorate and select themed items that you can take with you if you ever move to a larger place.
Decorating Your Patio Balcony
Just because you don’t have a large backyard it does not mean you cannot create your own getaway space as well. The great thing with balconies is that you’re generally provided with a fencing structure that you can utilize for support. HGTV, suggested bamboo fencing is a cost effective, easy and green way to instantly dress up your balcony. Adding flowers and plants is a great way to add color and life to an area. Often time’s balconies either come with a faux green turf or cement floor, bamboo rugs are perfect for adding appeal to your floor while still being durable for outdoor use. Throw in a quaint table with some foldable chairs, or even a corner water feature and you have an outdoor environment in which you can escape the world to.
Decorating a small space simply requires selective pieces and ideas along with a bit of creativity. Remember to not get discouraged and to start one thing at a time. So no matter the size of your home, you can create your relaxing retreat.