Not everyone can afford a 3 bedroom apartment or a spacious house with your own yard and seemingly endless living space to enjoy.
And that’s perfectly fine. I’ve lived in different places – some of them were close to 100 m2, while others were less than 30 m2. While some things definitely changed, the fundamentals of my daily stayed the same thanks to a few tricks.
Let’s face it. Moving to the financial centers of the world (or our country) forces us to squeeze into tinier rooms to make ends meet. The transition was shocking to me at first, too. I had to downsize almost thrice!
However, in the end I was surprised how easy it was to get accustomed to my new surroundings. As a propagator of living cozily, I’d like to give you a few tips on making a small room feel way bigger than it really is!
It starts with the colors
This one is no secret, but I’ve seen quite a few people get it completely wrong anyways.
The lighter color, the more spacious your room will feel. Usually I’m not into pure white walls as they’re a little too ‘bright’ for my taste. However, colors like light blue or light green are a very good way to open up any living space.
This effect will be amplified if you don’t combine too many colors. Sticking to a monochrome color strategy and only playing around with the hues of your main color will yield even better results.
Optional: think about adding some striped patterns too. Especially on small rugs/carpets scattered around the floor. Stripes also contribute to making your living arrangements appear larger than they really are!
Stack, don’t sprawl
A strategy you can clearly see in some Asian countries where apartments are notoriously small! In many Western countries, we tend to arrange things in a ‘sprawling’ order.
Instead, some countries like South Korea or Japan stack things on top of each other, much like a tower. This opens up a lot of space and interestingly enough, has always looked quite stylish to me.
Of course, don’t overdo this – ending up with gigantic towers of drawers and whatnot piled upon each other. All I’m saying is you should probably balance between these two approaches to arranging your living space.
Think about being more minimalistic
We’re consumers to the core of our souls. And that’s kind of alright.
However, I see a lot of people overcluttering their homes for the sake of…I’m not sure exactly. Hoarding is a thing and it can really turn your apartment into a chaotic realm of things you don’t really need, but they’re scattered around anyways.
Think seriously about the furniture you actually need in your room. Can you get something that will be multifunctional (a sofa bed for example) and save you a good dose of space?
Downsizing to my smaller living arrangements made me realize how many things I thought I need in my old place…But I actually could live just fine without them!
Mirrors do help
Obviously, I’m not saying you’ll need a mirror plastered on every wall.
However, having one or two mirrors – they don’t even have to be that big, will make a tremendous difference to your room. Paired with lighter colors, mirrors do wonders in opening up any space, no matter how small it is.
Just pick a good place where you won’t risk breaking it on accident, of course!
On materials and curtains
Both of these are important. Similar to colors, lighter materials will refresh your apartment and make it appear comfortably large.
I usually like leather sofas, for example. But in the case of my 30 m2 apartment not only would one take too much space, it would actually feel a bit…oppressing, I guess.
Picking the proper materials is even more important when it comes to curtains. Some people actually recommend leaving your windows uncovered as it lets light come through at all time.
Of course, this is really dependant on how your apartment is positioned and your surroundings.
Sometimes, everything around you is noisy, outside it’s too hot or other bothersome factors. That’s why people invest in sound blocking or heat blocking curtains made of thick fabric.
If that’s the case, just make sure you pick the most cheerful/light colored variation of these thicker curtain type. Otherwise you’ll severely reduce how spacious your room really feels. I really recommend you go for lighter curtains, semi-transparent even, if your living surroundings allow it.