interior designer Tatiana smiles while posing with arms crossed

Stylish Small Space Decorating Ideas

These small space decorating ideas will be one of the most valuable commodities in making your home feel like, well, your home no matter what your interior design style is!

Whether you live in an apartment, condo, or are trying to make the most of a small room in a house, these small space decorating ideas can be a game-changer for maximizing both organization and style.

The key to making a space feel larger is “all about tricking the eye,” says Tatiana von Slomski, the Los Angeles-based interior designer behind Billie Bloom.

When you’re ready to take matters into your own hands, let von Slomski’s favorite small space decorating tips help you spruce up your home like a pro. Here’s what she told us.

1. Go Vertical

interior designer tatiana showing a decorated small space

Display your taste while making a small space seem roomier by adding art in the form of a gallery wall.

“Vertical is key when your space is lacking square footage,” von Slomski shared. “Take advantage of the vertical real estate on your walls by using artwork to create a focal point.”

To maximize your space even more, she recommends choosing larger frames, bold art and bright colors, and pairing wide mats with any smaller images to “create a sense of space.”

When it comes to choosing your pieces, definitely make it personal.

“Don’t just fill your walls or room with items you think you’re supposed to have,” says von Slomski. “It’s ok to be intentional, and if you love it, chances are there’s a way to make it work!”

As an alternative to a gallery wall, you could take advantage of vertical space by adding a floor-to-ceiling bookcase or open shelving, which would not only show off your style but provide some much-needed storage too.

Installing shelving up to the top of the room draws the eye upward and creates the illusion of higher ceilings.

And don’t limit yourself to books. Add plants (we have some recommendations here) or personal effects to the shelves for more visual appeal. Include lots of varying textures and shapes.

If you are just contemplating a move to a smaller place, whether to downsize or live closer to the action, don’t start hunting for your next apartment until you’ve read these tips on our blog.

2. Think Big

interior designer using vertical space for small decorating spaces

It might sound counterintuitive, but when it comes to maximizing a small space, bigger can be better!

“Large, multifunctional furniture is key,” says von Slomski. “Choose items that have a dual purpose, such as a sofa with pullout storage space, an ottoman that opens for extra storage, or a steamer trunk that can also double as a coffee or end table.”

These larger pieces that do double-duty can help reduce clutter, which keeps your space clean and organized, and makes it feel more open than a slew of smaller pieces would.

Von Slomski also recommends choosing furniture with legs, which also gives the illusion of space—and provides an opportunity for storage underneath.

When it comes to arranging your space, the designer notes that “pushing all of your large pieces of furniture right up against the wall will emphasize the boundaries of the room, so make sure nothing is pushed directly up against the wall.”

Tie everything together with a large rug. Von Slomski notes that while many people think small rugs are better in a small space, a smaller option will likely leave the room feeling tight.

Taking your style outdoors? Check out our guide to small spaces outside.

3. Let Light in

interior designer using public storage boxes for more space

Bright spaces seem larger, so don’t be afraid to let the light in.

“Natural light can really help make a space feel larger, so don’t inhibit whatever natural light source you have,” says von Slomski. “Swap out dark, heavy curtains that cover most of the window with a linen option (hung on a thick rod close to the ceiling) and don’t place a large armoire or chair right next to a window.”

Once you’ve allowed the light in, let’s get your color choices working to open up your space. Add color through your artwork and decor, while keeping larger furniture in pastels, light neutrals, and shades of white to create a feeling of openness and airiness.

When it comes to white paint, the choices are truly daunting. Here’s another pro tip: Von Slomski’s favorite is Warm White by Dunn-Edwards.

“It doesn’t reflect any shades of yellow or blue. It’s a crisp, clean white that I always get compliments on!”

She also recommends focusing on lightweight, natural fabrics—for example, cotton or linen for curtains and a jute or sisal rug. Skip the busy patterns and opt for solid upholstery fabric, as it preserves the clean lines of a space.

Finally, utilize mirrors to reflect light by placing them strategically around the room.

Viola! You’ve got extra storage, space and style.

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