Making A Cramped Bedroom Feel Spacious
Ideally, a bedroom should be a relaxing retreat. Too bad they're just as likely to be part dressing room, part workspace and part extra storage! And when you're living in a small space, it's even harder to create a room that feels spacious and uncluttered. Luckily, we have a few tips to help you streamline your space. Maybe you can have that personal haven after all!
1. Use paint to create the illusion of an alcove. A coat of high-contrast paint visually separates the bed from the rest of the room, creating the illusion of a cosy sleeping nook that feels removed from the rest of the space.
2. Replace your nightstand with a floor lamp. You don't have to be obsessed with minimalism to see the beauty in a streamlined look. Ditch your bedside table and table lamp in favour of a floor lamp to free up precious space without losing the light. Now there's a bright idea!
3. Reconsider your dresser. Missing your nightstand? If you can't do without bedside storage, simply slide your dresser next to the bed for a spot to stash your nighttime read.
House & Home September 2012 Issue
Insufficient storage may seem like a deal breaker, but luckily, an abundance of chic, new storage units make it easy to get the benefits of built-ins without the cost. There's a catch — you'll have to give up some wall space, which means fewer spots for wall art, but it's worth it. Standing cabinets may take up a little more room, but they go a long way to cut down on small-space clutter. Here are three reasons why we love this idea.
1. Bright, reflective cabinets trick the eye. Although it may seem counter-intuitive, sacrificing 20" along one wall can make your room feel larger — as long as you use the right materials! Choose cabinets with a light, reflective surface. They'll bounce light, working like a mirror to make your room look brighter and more spacious.
2. One art-free wall focuses your home gallery on another wall. As important as art is in the home, lavishly decorated walls can look messy, especially in a small room. Instead, group your favourite pieces on a smaller wall, and use a larger wall for storage. Smooth, handle-free cabinets will help create that clean, curated look in your home.
3. They're budget-friendly. Custom-built cabinets can be a huge investment, but many furniture brands offer fantastic freestanding storage solutions at affordable prices. These Ikea cabinets (above) look super-stylish and can be installed in a single afternoon. Easy!
Cabinets, rugs, armchair, boxes, Ikea.
House & Home August 2014 issue
Clutter-Free Living Rooms
Sure, we all dream of having dedicated guest quarters, an entertainment room or even just lots of storage, but unfortunately for most of us, that kind of space is a real luxury. In most homes, a single room has to do double — or even triple — duty and with all that multitasking, the clutter has a way of piling up. Here are three tips for a tidier, more spacious living room, no matter how many roles it has to play.
1. Use a basket or box as a side table. Choose a sturdy piece with a flat top that will hold its shape under your mug or books. A lightweight basket works particularly well, since it can be moved around easily within the room. Stash your winter throws and extra remotes inside it and no one will be the wiser!
2. Skip a regular sofa in favour of a daybed or sofa bed. Frequent hosts can get more mileage out of the living room with a sofa that doubles as a bed. Try creating your own daybed out of two hollow ottomans with a layer of foam on top. Voila! Extra storage, seating and a guest bed in one.
3. Downsize your coffee table. Bigger isn't always better! Often, a low side table works just fine in front of the sofa. Better yet, take your cue from card tables and camping gear and search out a foldaway piece. They're easy to put away and visually lightweight, which helps your space look larger.
House & Home September 2012 issue
Making The Most Of A Tiny Entryway
Unless you're lucky enough to have a house with a grand foyer, entryways are almost always small spaces. And there's always a lot going on, which means it's easy for a tiny entry to feel crowded, cluttered and downright dull. Here are three simple ways to maximize this functional small space without skimping on style.
1. Paint furniture the same colour as the walls. Visually, it'll help the bench fade into the background, giving the entry the illusion of space. It's a daring move that doesn't require a huge investment — and the best part is, you don't have to sacrifice function.
2. Keep clutter contained. Creating dedicated spaces for often-used accessories will help keep them from hanging about underfoot, and it's an easy way to add some of your signature style. Here, we wrangled umbrellas in a cool, sculptural stand.
3. Go with a light hue underfoot. A light, bright tile visually opens up the space. Just go with an easy-to-clean option, since this is an area that has to handle lots of foot traffic and bears the brunt of the weather outside.
House & Home April 2013 issue
Fun & Functional Kids' Workspaces
Back to school is more than a chance to hit the stationery store — though who doesn't love a good highlighter haul? It's also the perfect time to create an organized, functional homework spot for your little scholars. Here's our best advice for creating the ideal kids' workspace.
1. Find the right spot. Some kids need quiet so they can focus, while others will get distracted too easily if left unattended. Figuring out the right place to set up shop is the first step to success.
2. Don't skimp on space. Kids need enough room to spread out, so choose a desk or table where they have the space to see all their books and homework sheets at once.
3. Go with a comfy chair. The right seat eliminates squirminess so your child can focus on what's important.
4. Choose a space with storage. Keep supplies close at hand so there's no mid-worksheet wandering.
5. Make use of the walls. Hang a cork or magnet board to display accomplishments like a good test score. Turn part of it into a DIY calendar and it'll help everyone keep track of upcoming tasks and assignments.
House & Home March 2014 issue