You can make the most of a small space with­out sac­ri­fic­ing char­ac­ter, colour and com­fort, writes Tracey Strange

Weekend Herald - Canvas - - CONTENTS -

How to make the most of a small space

1As ele­men­tary as it seems, it’s im­pos­si­ble to take ev­ery stick of fur­ni­ture with you when down­siz­ing to a smaller home. Pint-sized spa­ces need sim­i­lar­ily scaled fur­ni­ture. But there are a few ex­cep­tions. Two-and-half-seater sofas — or large two-seaters — are far more ac­com­mo­dat­ing than a stan­dard two-seater (un­less your guests know each other well, they aren’t go­ing to want to sit that close). Side ta­bles only big enough for a cup and not a cup and a book (and per­haps a small vase of flow­ers) are ir­ri­tat­ing. Ditch them in favour of a more gen­er­ously sized cof­fee ta­ble or en­sure that when they aren’t in use they can be stored away un­der other fur­ni­ture such as a hall ta­ble.

2One of the big­gest is­sues with small rooms is that it’s all too easy to re­vert to ar­rang­ing most of the fur­ni­ture against the walls. This can make a liv­ing space feel spar­tan and char­ac­ter­less. In­stead, con­sider plac­ing a couch hard up against a floor-to-ceil­ing book­case. The floor space you lose will be more than made up for by the ex­tra stor­age and the book­case’s bot­tom shelves can be de­voted to things you don’t of­ten need. Sim­i­larly plac­ing a low con­sole be­hind a free-float­ing couch not only “grounds” the couch and stops the place­ment from look­ing ran­dom, it pro­vides some­where for books, flow­ers and other ac­ces­sories.

3Keep en­try­ways clear. Trip­ping over a pouffe or hav­ing to fight a large plant just to sit down is an­noy­ing, not to men­tion un­wel­com­ing. Plan the room so that there’s clear­ance when you walk in, and an ob­vi­ous path­way to the sofa. Sim­i­larly, don’t be stingy with space around doors or draw­ers — they must be able to open prop­erly.

Cre­ate an ob­vi­ous seat­ing space with an area rug. King Liv­ing

Cof­fee ta­bles with fine legs are all per­fect for small rooms. Free­dom Fur­ni­ture

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