Certain inevitable expectations come with the prospect of trying to cram an entire life into a one room or a couple of too-small rooms. Trying to devise a working decorating plan that allows for the highest efficiency of space and purpose without giving in to the propensity of cluttering up life can be especially difficult.
If you are trying to live your life from a studio apartment or a rented room or a renovated attic or basement then the first thing you must overcome is the reality of daily life. That means viewing your living quarters from the perspective of all those things that must be stored away somewhere in order to survive.
Chances are that hidden storage space is at an even greater than usual premium so the stuff that sits comfortably out of sight inside drawers and cabinets and closets in larger homes will have to hang from the wall, be hidden under the bed or take up space in furniture with drawers and cabinets.
Once you figure out what daily items for living aren’t going to wind up inside built-in closets, drawers, cabinets and attics, you can start working their necessary exhibition or disguise into your decorating plans.
The most efficient way of dealing with a life more expansive than your living quarters is to take full advantage of the spaces more easily neglected by those living large.
Except for those people who enjoy the claustrophobic quality of a quaint country cottage even when living in a two-story mansion, most people don’t take full advantage of their wall space. Those living in studio apartments, small mobile homes, a rented room or converted attic or basement need to exploit every single available inch of storage room.
This can be done by attaching storage space to the wall. The aesthetics need not be trumped by the utilitarian quotient here. If you find a wall cabinet you really like and it’s affordable, invest in more than one and place them side by side if your walls are large enough.
Situated at the right height, you can place items rarely used on the top while still allowing easy access to the shelving. And the side by side look creates a distinctive stylistic line missing when a wall cabinet sits by itself.
Pegboard can become the best friend of those living in small spaces. An entire wall made of pegboard can be a little overwhelming, but decorated with an eye toward aesthetics as well as storage; even an entire wall of perforated hardboard can look good.
And the best thing is that the pegboard can handle the weight of just about anything as long as the hooks inside the pegboard are strong enough. If an entire wall of pegboard is unappealing, consider putting up pegboard from the halfway point on the wall either up to the ceiling or down to the baseboard.
If you are allowed to paint the wall, a vibrant and bold color covering that other half of the wall will go a long way toward taking attention away from the functionality of the pegboard.
Even if do have enough room for a full-sized sofa, you may want instead to invest in a more stylish modular couch with storage space hidden beneath the cushions. Furniture designs have recognized that living areas in America becoming more and more cramped for more and more people and have responded with sofa, love seats and chairs that serve dual purpose.
As is always the case with these things, a compromise has to be made: sofas that serve as storage typically must sacrifice comfort for the storage capability, obviously, so to make up for that loss, much of this furniture has a sleek modern or futuristic stylistic edge to it that makes it much more apt for younger people living in small spaces than those trying to make a retirement home apartment more comfy.
The only thing worse than one person living in a home without enough room is two people trying to share not enough room. When the space is large enough or the needs are small enough, the best solution may be the least likely. A shelf unit with a back can be used as a way to divide the living space in two while also providing necessary storage space.
Full advantage can be taken by addding pegboard to one or both ends of the unit, depending on whether it is situated flush against a wall or not. While this interior design choice gives up some floor space, it provides a greater opportunity for individual decorating choices on either side to provide a greater illusion of separate living areas.