Living in an apartment, no matter what the size, always feels smaller than a home out in the suburbs. Sure, even if the two homes have the same amount of square footage, the home still feels larger. Though an apartment will never have the same outdoor space or an attached garage, there are plenty of ways to make a small apartment feel larger.
Furniture: Adios, Arms!
Before, I felt that choosing furniture without any arms was crazy. Once I realized that using these kinds of pieces in my apartment helped to make the room feel larger, I fell in love. It’s true, when you choose items like chairs or couches that don’t have big, bulky arms in the way, it gives the illusion that the room feels larger. You don’t have to purchase all of your furniture to fit this mantra, but even one or two pieces can help make a difference.
Over the past several years, I’ve lived in six different apartments with six different floor plans. That being said, I’ve learned that while two of those six apartments had fantastic floor plans (and subsequently, were much easier to desire a furniture layout for,) not all apartments have a great floor plan. So, when it comes to awkward spaces, though you may enjoy a ‘floating floor plan,’ with your furniture, it may not work best in your current apartment. Pushing larger items up to a large wall helps to minimize the amount of space used and essentially, enlarges the overall room.
However, if you absolutely must have a floating floor plan, try to utilize all of the space as much as possible. For example, a floating couch could have a desk or a sofa table pushed up behind it. By doing this, you’re using space that would otherwise be wasted.
As an apartment dweller myself, I realize that I can’t have a dining room table and chairs, a china hutch AND a buffet in my dining room. It just wouldn’t fit and it really wouldn’t make sense. That being said, I’ve found that I can create “multipurpose” furniture by repurposing other pieces.
For example, the sofa with the desk behind it as mentioned above can be turned into a buffet for when I have guests over. Now, the desk is serving multiple purposes, helping me to save space in my apartment.
Still stuck? Another great example of multiple purpose furniture: ottomans or footrests that can be used for storage or for extra seating when guests are visiting. Another tip: look for storage ottomans that are small enough to slip underneath your coffee table so that way you can save additional space when you’re not using them.
Use Those Walls
Unfortunately, one of the biggest weaknesses I’ve come across in my years as an apartment dweller is the complete lack of space found in most apartment kitchens. To this day, I have yet to have a kitchen with a decent amount of space. That being said, I often have trouble storing all of my kitchen items (I’m an avid cooker,) so I’ve learned to find space where there isn’t; without storing sweaters in my stove.
So, unless your apartment strictly forbids putting anything on the walls, then use them! Purchase items that help you hang your kitchen pots and pans, cooking utensils and other goodies on the wall. That way you’ll free up some cabinet space that can be used as a pantry or for your other kitchen-y items.
By truly utilizing all the space you have you’ll find that overall, your once-tiny apartment feels much, much bigger.