Interior Design Tips for Maximizing a Small Living Space

I’m thrilled to announce that Michaela of Michaela Noelle Designs and an interior design student will be a summer contributor here at Simplified Bee. Earlier this year she wrote a great article on Color Psychology in Interior Design. Today, she will be giving us design tips for small spaces. Thanks Michaela!

I’m so excited to be here sharing on Simplified Bee today. I adore Cristin- we had the chance to meet a few months ago and she really is such an inspiration to me.  Today, she’s asked me to share my take on easy ways to maximize a small space.  This past school year I lived in a very tiny apartment, and while I couldn’t make any serious changes because the apartments were owned by the school, I sure spent plenty of hours thinking about what I’d do if I could!  That’s just how the designer brain works…always thinking of how to improve a space (: 

Let’s dive in!

Top Ways to Maximize Your Small Space:

1. Lighter is Brighter.  Soft, neutral colored walls always makes a space appear larger.  While an accent wall here or there is a great idea, darker colors tend to impose on a space, making it feel smaller.  Some smart color choices would be light blue, beige, light gray or a pale yellow.  Add brighter colors in smaller doses like pillows, curtains and art work, if you wish.
Young House Love
House Beautiful
2.  Consistency.  Having a uniform floor running throughout your small space is a way to trick the eye into thinking the space is longer or wider.
Apartment Therapy
3. Mirror, Mirror on the Wall.  Hanging mirrors is a great way to visually maximize space, as it reflects light and enlarges the depth of perception.
Danielle Oakey Interiors
4. Let There be Light.  Smart lighting choices found in fun pendants, chandeliers and other ambient lighting will help keep the space light and bright, thus making it feel nice and spacious.
House Beautiful

5.  Tuck it Away.  Perhaps the most important way to keep your space feeling larger than it is, would be storage.  There are so many creative ways to keep your clutter out of sight.  Vertical storage in bookcases is a great space saver.  It’s also a fun way to add personality- decorating your bookshelves.  Other storage options include ottomans, buffet tables for your eating space, or a dresser for your entry table.  If you don’t have a linen closet, a dresser is a great option! No one has to know what’s in those drawers (:
Apartment Therapy
With some of these tips implemented into a small home or apartment, you’re bound to fool your guests when the guess your square footage. Hope these helped! Thanks again for having me, Cristin!



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9 Responses to Interior Design Tips for Maximizing a Small Living Space

  1. Whittlee Hamblin June 15, 2011 at 8:26 pm #

    #4 is my boss's work! Isn't it great?

  2. marie grabo June 15, 2011 at 6:37 pm #

    Thanks for the tips! Very creative use of the space in the staircase! Wondering what the treatment was for the fireplace pic from Young House Love, is it tile? All very nice Cristen, thanks again, so glad to find your blog, will use your inspiration on my site

  3. Brittany {Gallery No. Eight} June 14, 2011 at 5:52 pm #

    Fab tips Michaela! And you found some gorgeous inspiration images!

  4. The Little Flapper June 14, 2011 at 4:16 pm #

    I love all the tips. Especially the neutral colored walls! 🙂

  5. CDS June 13, 2011 at 9:23 pm #

    OK I love this! I moved into a “bigger” home but my living space shrunk! …I want to know how to maximize small living space when living with a crawling baby! 🙂 …we want to give her a play space within it.

  6. Michaela June 13, 2011 at 9:06 pm #

    Thanks for having me, Cristin! Fun to put it together. Looking forward to Thursday (:

  7. Becky B. June 13, 2011 at 8:42 pm #

    Love all the tips! Most of those I've used my own small, master bedroom.

    Becky B.
    Organizing Made Fun

  8. Cheryl June 13, 2011 at 6:39 pm #

    All of these ideas can be used in nooks and crannies of any home… love them all!!! Thanks for posting.

  9. Becca June 13, 2011 at 5:30 pm #

    Beautiful inspiration pics and wonderful tips, as well !! Thanks so much for sharing !!