5 Tips For Making Your Small Apartment Look Bigger
If you've been living in apartments since your college days and have not yet graduated to a house, chances are you've probably wished for more space on more than one occasion. City apartment living usually comes with minimal closet space, smaller bedrooms, and compromised open concept areas (aka lack of separate dining rooms or even living rooms). Because of this, apartments can look (and feel) much smaller than they actually are.
Thankfully, there are ways to maximize the space you do have and make it appear much more open and airy than it may actually be. POPSUGAR spoke with a few experts to learn some quick and easy home design and decor tricks you can implement to do this. From choosing the right paint color for the walls to skipping out on certain decor components, each tip will breathe new life into your home.
Go Bright and Airy
One of the most important tips for making any room brighter and appear bigger is choosing the right paint color. Lauren O'Donnell, Build.com's in-house interior designer, says she instantly notices a few things when she walks into a smaller space, telling POPSUGAR, "First and foremost is color. Paint is the easiest and most cost-effective impact you can make to a room."
She suggests choosing softer hues and brighter colors that will help make the space feel larger and more welcoming. However, remember to keep this concept going throughout the whole apartment. "The same is true for kitchen cabinetry," added O'Donnell. "Have fun with the lower cabinets. Go bold even! But keep those upper cabinets light and bright."
Skip the Rug
When dealing with a space with lower square-footage, be sure pass on the accent rugs. "One of the reasons I use rugs is to help define spaces in a room," said Mark Cutler, President of Mark Cutler Design, Inc. in Los Angeles. "When designing smaller spaces, I skip the rug so that the space feels seamless and flows easily from one area to another."
Use the Pineapple Principle
Clutter makes any room seem crowded, so it's important to manage it correctly. Angie Lane, lead architect, designer, and owner at A. Lane Architecture in Tecumseh, MI, says clutter includes any decor or accessories you may have, not just everyday household items. Because of this, it's important to remember this simple trick when setting up your place: "Fewer, larger decor pieces are better than smaller ones," she said. "Use the Pineapple Principle — choose a select few decor items that are the size of a pineapple or larger."
Invest in Additional Lighting
Adding more lighting to your apartment will not only make it appear brighter, but bigger as well. "Most apartments are underlit and may lack large amounts of natural light," Lane said, adding that placing additional lamps with 2700-3000k color temperature LED bulbs and upgrading existing ceiling bulbs to match this is best. "Lingering old incandescent bulbs or warmer color temperature bulbs will not be as bright".
Glass Is Key
One of my favorite tricks is investing in furniture that's made of either glass or another transparent material. For instance, I have a glass coffee table, a glass desk in the bedroom, and also chrome and plastic kitchen table chairs from Ikea ($79 each). The "see-through" quality of the pieces make the room feel less cluttered. And an added bonus is that glass pretty much goes with everything!