June 16, 2012
By Lisa Canning
Small spaces are more and more common with the increase in condo living, and making these spaces work can be a challenge. With careful space planning and ingenious multi-functional products, you can have all the function and style in any square footage.
TIP #1: START WITH A CONDO-SIZED SOFA
The sofa is often a great place to start when planning a small space, as it usually takes up the most mass, and it is also the easiest piece to purchase incorrectly. A sofa that is too large in a given space can feel cumbersome. Conversely, a sofa that is too small can feel like dollhouse furniture. Luckily, many retailers make it easier to make the right choice by carrying apartment-sized, or condo-appropriate pieces, which are often smaller-scale translations of their most popular lines. And of course, many condo-sized sofas can also be purchased with a sofa bed option to give you the flexibility of creating a guest room in your small space.
TIP #2: USE CLEAR FURNITURE
What’s great about furniture made out of glass, or acrylic, is that it doesn’t take up much visual space. A ghost chair or a waterfall table will give you an instant modern update and provide great function while keeping the space feeling light. In condos that have gorgeous large windows, place pieces that are clear directly in front, since they won’t obstruct the view.
TIP #3: WALL-MOUNTED LIGHTING
A layered lighting plan is something I always recommend to clients, but in a small space this approach is especially advantageous. Rather than opting for a floor lamp with mass, weight and that takes up floor area, sconces give you ambient lighting while saving space. I love the architectural detail sconces provide and often use them on either end of a gallery wall or sofa.
TIP #4: WORK WITH PIECES THAT ARE MULTI-FUNCTIONAL
In a space that might be too small for a home office, or a formal dining room, I have some great innovative products to share. The first is the Functional Coffee Table from BoConcept. At first glance, it looks like a sleek, minimal coffee table. But with an easy lift, it reveals a desk-height table and ample storage. Storage will always be an issue in small spaces, so anything that will serve a function and provide storage is a great addition. Another incredible product on the market is the Lacuna table by VNO Designs. This innovative product begins as a piece of customizable art on the wall. With the release of a latch, the art piece lowers to reveal a concealed leg and becomes a dining table for five. For people who don’t formally entertain often, or for those living in really limited space, this is a unique space-saving solution.
TIP #5: WORK WITH SMART STORAGE SYSTEMS
Great interior storage is just as important as utilizing multi-functional storage. Drawer dividers, shelf dividers and small storage boxes are great tools to use to increase your storage space. The more levels you can create within a drawer, the more items can be stored and easily found. I love using small stackable, acrylic storage compartments to divide my drawers. Style doesn’t stop at the exterior of a piece – allow your furniture to function at its best by investing in interior organization.
Filed under: FROM THE EXPERTS