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Are you are currently on the hunt for your dream home? If you are looking into houses for sale but don’t necessarily have the budget for extra square footage, don’t be too quick to say no to smaller homes immediately. With the proper planning, creativity, and styling, you can make any space look expensive and comfortable, no matter how dainty it may be.

A small space does not necessarily mean that your home is dull and uncomfortable. Here are some ways to plan and style small spaces.

Use one room for multiple functions

If the pandemic and lockdowns have taught us anything, it’s that it’s not always practical to just use one room for a single purpose.

When your home or room is on the smaller side, one of the things you will need to accept as a homeowner is that you will have to consider using the space or room for multiple functions. One of the biggest challenges is to find practical ways to maximize the space to meet your needs as an occupant.

Here are some examples of spaces being used for multiple functions:

  • Adding a workspace nook in one area of your kitchen
  • Installing a comfortable seating area in your bedroom
  • Incorporating a homework station in your home office so that your kids have somewhere to finish their requirements, especially if they don’t have space in their bedrooms

The key to knowing what functions to add to your space is to determine what your day-to-day life will look like and know your priorities so that you don’t make additions you don’t need.

Establish various “zones” in your small space

Think of your small space as an open floor space plan—it’s one room, but there are different areas or “zones” that serve different purposes. It will help make your space give the illusion of separateness between the areas but still provide a cohesive look and feel. Here are some practical tips for establishing different zones in the space:

  • Use rugs to create a proper distinction between the sections. Use one area rug for the bed area, then one area rug for the sofa.
  • Invest in storage-saving and dividing pieces of furniture like a bench or a console. Not only can they serve as additional cabinetry, but they can also properly create a divide between the sections in your space.
  • If you have a room that you don’t know what to do with, consider adding a zone for your kids where they can do some artwork and play and an area for you and your partner where you can enjoy some Netflix or video games.

Keep the color palette light

When it comes to using colors to create illusions of a bigger or smaller space, the general rule of thumb is that lighter colors make a space look bigger, while darker ones create the opposite effect. If your space or room is already on the smaller side, then your color palette should be on the light and bright side to open it up more and to make the area look and feel larger than it is. Moreover, lighter colors can help light bounce off better, so airy hues will emphasize and multiply whatever light is available.

Use a lighter color for the walls and furniture to establish the illusion of more space in the room.

Re-think how you distribute weight in the space

If the room is on the smaller side, one of the worst things you might do is incorporate furniture pieces on the heavier side, like a bulky sectional or a massive coffee table. To bring balance to the space, incorporate more furniture pieces that have legs—it will help make the room feel so much more open. Chairs and tables with legs can help expand spaces in ways that legless furniture pieces don’t.

Hang the drapes higher than the windows

This may seem weird, but hear us out: Hanging the drapes so much higher than the windows creates the illusion of a higher ceiling. Architectural Digest suggests that if you want your space to look bigger, drapes should be hung a minimum of four inches to a maximum of six inches above your windows.

If you are single, or it’s just you and your partner, or your family is just growing, you don’t need to be too quick to reject a smaller home, especially if it’s your first one. Just be creative, resourceful, and imaginative—and you will undoubtedly maximize whatever square footage you do get your hands on.