Minimalism always works when you’re furnishing a small condo, but that doesn’t mean you need to sacrifice certain conveniences just to save space. Here are ways to maximize your space while making it feel completely comfortable:
1. Opt for built-in furniture and shelves. If you own the condo (AKA you’re not answerable to a landlord), you might want to invest in built-in cabinets, shelves, sideboards, and even nightstands. This way, you can customize the size of your furniture according to how much space you have, make it look consistent with the rest of your interiors, as well as add more features to maximize its use that you will otherwise not get from a store-bought piece.
2. Have vertical storage. Think floor-to-ceiling bookcases or mounting shelves high up a wall. Besides giving you lots of storage, this creates a vertical pattern that makes your space feel like it has a higher ceiling.
3. Hang them on the wall. Save floor space by opting for a mounted nightstand, shelves above your bed, and even lighting. According to ApartmentTherapy.com, “The open space underneath the nightstand visually enlarges the space, and you can also stash things like shoes and books underneath. Mounting a lamp on the wall frees up space on top of the nightstand…In the room above, wall shelves provide a catch-all for books and other sundries in a super-narrow sleeping space.” They also add that any hanging light like pendant lamps or wall sconces “instantly brightens up a room and doesn't require an inch of table or floor space.”
4. Decide which few pieces of large furniture you need and plan around them. “Think where the largest pieces of furniture like beds and sofas fit into the room, then…work smaller pieces around them. In bedrooms, allow at least 24 inches between the side of the bed and a wall, and at least 36 inches between the bed and a swinging door,” advises Elle Decor.
5. Don’t go big, go low. Even if you’re planning your furniture layout around big pieces of furniture, heavy-looking, overstuffed pieces have no room in a small space. They will instantly make your condo feel cramped. “Instead, opt for low-profile, streamlined furniture, particularly sofas. Low-profile furniture essentially means low to the ground. A low-profile sofa, for example, means there’s a small distance from the floor to the sofa seat. From a design standpoint, this usually means smaller sofa legs, streamlined cushions or a narrow base,” explains Forbes. This is a great complement to your high-mounted shelves.
6. Multi-tasking pieces are your friends. One of the smartest ways to save space in your condo is to pick furniture that serves more than one purpose. Have everything you need while owning less when you pick double-duty items like pullout sofa beds, a storage ottoman that can serve as an extra seat and coffee table, and generally chairs and benches with hidden storage.
7. Removable furniture can do the job. Besides multi-tasking furniture, those you can fold, stack, put away, or even make smaller will do wonders for your condo space. “Simply push it out of the way when it’s not in use. Opt for a dining table that can be made smaller or larger with removable or drop leaves to make the most of the space that you do have,” recommends Stylecaster.com.
8. Don’t underestimate your under-bed storage capacity. Great if, following tips #1 and #6, you have a bed with built-in storage compartments or shelves underneath where you can keep anything from knick-knacks and old photos to books and sheets. You can also find long and flat storage options that you can slip under your bed to keep beddings, socks, or even clothes. Yet even without these, you can simply maximize the open space under your bed. ApartmentTherapy.com points out, “The space under your bed has a ton of potential (depending on your bed frame). But even if you have just a few inches, put that to use! [Turn]…the sliver of room under a bed frame into a floor-bound bookshelf simply by stacking them on top of each other nicely (note that you'll likely have to dust regularly as not to collect dust bunnies!).” If you’re not a fan of reaching under your bed for things, ApartmentTherapy.com also suggests, “Putting a storage bench, baskets or even crates at the foot of your bed is a smart way to squeeze in more of whatever you need. This typically only takes up about a foot of space but the payoff is invaluable.”