In your first apartment, cost likely takes precedence over square footage. Budget-friendly apartment hunters may settle on a small space they can afford… and that’s perfect! Once you’re in your small space, it’s time to get decorating. The great news is that with a little thought, you can make decisions that actually make your small space feel huge! (Or, at least bigger.)
Use light-colored paint
If you have the option to paint or select finishes in the apartment, go lighter! Dark colors make the space feel even smaller than it actually is. Light greys or blues or off-white colors are great, neutral options. If you can’t paint, consider hanging light-colored artwork or tapestries to brighten dark walls. You can also use rugs on dark floors to brighten and open your space even more!
Limit clutter & utilize organizational options
Nothing shrinks a space more than clutter everywhere! When you move in, take time to make space for your stuff so you are organized! Consider investing in organizational cubes or bins that can help you find a place for every little thing. Try not to leave throw blankets, dishes, shoes, and tech accessories laying around, and always tidy up before you go to bed each night (that keeps a mess manageable!). By having places to put everything, the clean-up process will be quick and easy.
If you start to feel that countertops or other surfaces are feeling cluttered, remove some items and find new homes for them! My kitchen countertops get cluttered quickly, so every few months I’ll re-assess what I need at arms-reach and what should get put into cabinets.
Choose furniture wisely
Your furniture selections can also make a small space feel smaller or larger! Choose pieces that don’t overpower your space – think of bed frames that are light colored or feature open space, find skinny desks or dressers, and limit the pieces you place in each room. Your space can feel cozy without feeling claustrophobic if you’re particular when shopping for furniture.
Use your vertical space. Whenever you can, move things off the floor to wall shelves, fold-down desks, hooks and racks. This will make your space look larger two ways: it will open up more floor space and it will draw your eye up.
Finally, don’t forget the oldest trick of all for making a space look bigger – strategically placed mirrors! A tall mirror across from the window will reflect light while giving the illusion of more space. Inexpensive mirrors are available at all big box stores and if you are into DIY you can built yours a nice frame from hardware store supplies.
What tricks have you used to make your apartment feel larger than it really is?!