A small, cozy space is the perfect feeling many of us want for our home. Storage is key to making areas feel spacious yet cozy. We have to admit, it isn’t easy in these tiny homes or granny flats, even the most minimalistic tiny-house enthusiast has to admit that more space is something that everyone would most definitely long for. With the short history of these types of structures, it’s quite understandable how quickly they can feel cramped.
Here are some ideas to keep your space feeling as large as possible and also gaining as much storage as you can.
Colour is so important, people study this for years and decorators know the key to making something look nice, that is colour. We suggest starting with the walls. If it is undecided, opt for painting it white or a slight off white. We use white duck quarter strength Dulux paint for our Pods, with a clean white for the ceiling and skirtings. This gives your room a lighter feel as well as more depth. We don’t like to see everything white and have no contrast. When you use light colours that aren’t feature colours/walls, this gives space for your furniture and appliances to stand out.
If you want something more drastic and want to splash colour paint everywhere perhaps consider this: Make a clear distinction of your living spaces using colour, with the living room containing warm tones of burgundy and maybe a bedroom containing cool tones with hints of blue and purple —this calms your eyes and helps sort everything out from virtual chaos. And, as contradictory as it sounds, full-sized furniture can actually help small spaces appear less packed.
Another little “visual trickery” is mirrored doors for your wardrobe mixed with frosted glass doors. This looks modern, clean and spacious. The taller you get the bigger the room looks. Now, it’s time to start on the actualities of storing your belongings. Let’s start with everyone’s favourite place to clutter, the most common concern of all, the wardrobe.
To maximise the storage of your wardrobe a good idea is to start from the ground up. The space underneath the hanging area of your clothing, more often than not, gets overlooked by many but you can actually use the excess room for an extra dresser or a shoe rack underneath hanging clothes.
To be creative, you can hang a branch on an empty wall for extra space for hanging certain items. Baskets also come in handy for keeping accessories like jewellery without the area looking cluttered. Hanging hooks and sliding organisers also helps in maximising the space of the closet. Lastly, a good area for storage in the wardrobe is at the top, keep it sharp and neat by adding in shelf dividers, they create a great sense of organisation, you just may need a ladder.
A common item we see in wardrobes is linen. This is probably the most common item that most people find it difficult to maintain. They usually end up looking all shrivelled and teetering with the all-too-common loose thread on each sheet or towel. You can easily prevent this from happening by first getting rid of your non-essential linens. If you still have that new neon-yellow sheet or polka-dotted towel lying around, chances are, you don’t even use nor do you need them. Do yourself a favour and donate it to someone instead. Then, line the remaining linens up in your linen closet shelf. If you cannot get rid of linens you rarely use, get a vacuum bag and store it in the top of the wardrobe. As simple as this is, this preventative measure takes a long way in maintaining the quality of your sheets. Use boxes or bins to separate your linens if you have to, and sort your linens by category. Always make sure the linen you are storing is clean and put labels on the boxes you’ve put the linens in to keep organised.
A trick most people don’t know of in maximising storage spaces are hidden spots—you don’t even have to buy the extra furniture to keep your stuff in, you can easily find it in the spaces you overlook every day. You can store on the tiny blank walls and corners of your room that often goes unoccupied by using shelves and/or ledges or triangular floating shelves for the corners. You can also make use of the space under stairs, (which in itself is already a big blank wall of possibilities) or under your bed (there are storage beds out there too). The sides of cabinets can be of use too by placing hooks or baskets for easy-access items.
The kitchen, of course, can easily feel like a place of nightmares. You can easily make this into a place of sweet dreams by firstly keeping your station clean. You can also add wall shelves in order to help keep the counter free of rummage. It also helps to have a shelf stacker or under-shelf basket to keep things at the maximum organisation. You wouldn’t want messy clothes from an even messier kitchen, would you? The best way is to design the kitchen with shelving high and low to maximise all possible space.
The laundry has a few tricks to keep it clean as well by easily considering adding/upgrading new appliances like a pull-out or pull-down iron board. A trick is to get a clothes basket that is small enough to fit in a cupboard, this way it can be hidden. Ikea and Target have good options for this. Also, try and get cabinetry within your laundry to make places for detergents so they are off the bench and it is a nice clean space to do your washing in.
As you can see from everything mentioned above, living in a relatively small home is a walk in the park if you’re prepared for it and have these sorts of measures in place. You can make a downsizing adventure into an unending space of sanctity.
This post is general in nature and written based on the experience and opinions of the writers.
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