11 June 2018

How do you set up a small apartment? Here are 10 tips!

As Amsterdam real estate agents, we often visit small apartments, and we always see the advantages of them. They are generally cheaper than a large house and often have a favourable location. A small apartment has its own charm and the fact that you might not have that much space does not mean that you cannot live in a functional or stylish apartment. You can perfectly style your little apartment if you take into account a number of basic principles:


In a small space, you may not think of the installation of separations and you tend to leave the space as open as possible. That is a completely logical idea, but an open space quickly looks messy. Due to the absence of separations, the different living elements (kitchen, sitting room, sleeping area) are visually mixed. You can solve this by using room screens or by positioning furniture in a certain way. For example, place your sofa between the kitchen and seating area, or use some plants that to accentuate functional transitions in a room. A curtain is also a perfect way to apply a separation (cheaply).


Every inch is profit in a small apartment. That is why furniture that can be used multifunctionally is very practical. With houses getting smaller and smaller, the offer of multi-functional furniture is only getting bigger. Consider, for example, a sofa bed, which you can use as a sofa during the day, or a pouf in which you can store things. A folding or extendable dining table, which you can expand when guests come, is also very handy. There are many good designs on the market that are both practical and stylish.


Light colours always work more spacious than dark colours. When creating a colour palette, focus on three colours: two colours with a light, clear shade that cover most of the space and one accent colour that makes the whole thing visually more exciting. The accent does not always have to be an entire wall to make an impression:

Extra tip: if your apartment needs more daring colours, paint some furniture pieces in such a colour. However, limit yourself to a certain area in the room because otherwise you will get an overkill of colours and impressions, causing the space to lose its structure.


If you have lived in your apartment for a while, it can happen that you get stuck in ideas at a given moment, or you are just tired of half of your interior. Do you think you have tried everything and that you have used all the spaces in the house as well as possible? Go brainstorming and do not think about any costs or what work may have to be done. Think of window sills that might be used as a sitting area or workspace, or at corners in the room where you could place a corner furniture. Dare to think in height!


When designing a small apartment, it is wise to think ‘vertically’. If it doesn’t go in width, ti will mostly in height. Narrow high storage cupboards are your friend when decorating a smaller interior. Because of their narrow appearance, they do not occupy the entire wall and also offer a lot of storage space. Nowadays there are many nice shelf and cupboard systems with which you can make a storage system completely according to your own wishes. The Stacked storage system from Muuto is a good example of this:


In a small space, it is sometimes difficult to get everything neatly stored, let alone organized. Yet with the right storage tools and organizers you can create some order in the chaos. Small baskets that you put on a few shelfs can already hide a lot of rubbish. You can also store papers, documents and magazines in different ways so that everything looks neat and tidy.


Most apartments are square in shape and can therefore appear a bit boring. By making curved lines you can make a room a lot more exciting. A round dining table or a sofa with round angled corners can make the difference between a boring and a creative ‘out of the box’ design. Do not forget to bring the round shapes back in your accessories. Instead of a standard rectangular mirror, you can opt for a mirror with a somewhat rounder or oval shape. Also take a look at the lamps or the carpet.


Smaller apartments often lack in depth. That is logical because the space is simply limited. You will therefore have to apply visual tricks to create some sense of depth. One of these tricks is to work with layers and contrasts. For example, if your sofa is a neutral colour, put pillows with a nice pattern or a bold contrasting colour. Use carpets that have a different structure than the surface and put some extra pillows on the bed. When you do this in a playful and stylish way, you will notice that the space visually gets more depth.


Floating cabinet elements or shelves are particularly suitable for a small apartment. They make the room spacious and offer a lot of functionality. A bookcase takes up a lot of space and can easily be replaced by a system of floating planks or small floating cubes. There are a number of nice modular systems that you can use to get creative yourself. Floating systems are the future, so do some research and go for a floating design!


People are not only creatures of habit but also collectors. It is therefore logical that after a while you have collected a lot of stuff that you never actually use. So, keep a big clean-up day (or week) once a year and then think consciously about the things you (still) need. It is a well-known psychological phenomenon that we can hardly say goodbye to certain things, even if we do not use them. When you have trouble to put something away, put it separately in a box that you store elsewhere. You will see that a year later it is easy to dispose of the box of stuff. Anyway, your apartment will always be cleaned up in this way.

As you can see, a small apartment can also be stylishly furnished. Maybe you sometimes have to think ‘out of the box’ but that is the nice thing about interior design: with a little knowledge, inspiration and creativity everything is possible. Good luck!

Source: www.interieurdesigner.be

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