Small bedrooms often end up as less gorgeous, less relaxing spaces that have little to no personality. They are kept plainly with almost no effort to make it stylish. In a lot of homes, small spare bedrooms end up as dumping grounds of clothes-drying racks, old fitness equipment or as dumping ground for unused old items that cannot be stored in the garage, basement or attic. But if you’re living in a household where you really have to make use of the small bedroom for its purpose, or if you’ve moved out in the city where you only can afford an apartment with a small and boxy bedroom, you can still create a lovely personal abode without sacrificing style and function. Here are some tips on how to do that:
- Build around the headboard.
A built-in unit around the headboard is an efficient use of the space without needing to make use of the spaces on the other walls. Carve out a nook for the headboard and the upper portion of the bed, and use the built-in cabinetry as closet space or simple open shelving for storing books and other knick-knacks. Add a DIY upholstered headboard on the nook for a comfortable and beautiful look.
- Go for double-purpose furniture.
Having multi-functional furniture is a must in a small bedroom to maximize space and storage. Take the earlier example for instance. A mini bench with storage underneath as seating for the foot of your bed and storage for your extra beddings. A bookcase could work as a headboard and a nightstand, plus it can store your books and other belongings. A desk placed next to your bed serves as a work area at day and an oversized nightstand at night. Even accessories can do double duty, too. Pick a functional mirror that has a little shelf below so it can house a comb, sunglasses and your keys.
- Use built-in storage.
As much as possible, get built-in cabinets and dressers if you have a small bedroom. If your current room has none, you can install it or have it installed by a professional carpenter. Built-in cabinets and dressers would take less room compared to free-standing furniture, making foot traffic smoother.
- Sneak in storage under the bed.
Every inch of space is important in a small bedroom. The space under the bed is one wasted space if you don’t use it. If you have the ability, opt for a bed with built-in storage, or DIY your storage bed. But if not, you can use wheeled boxes storage bags, baskets, bins, and locked boxes to store out-of-season clothes, spare blankets and beddings, spare rugs, curtains and towels, hobby items, photo albums, important documents and more.
- Limit the color palette.
Stick to one or two colors so your room won’t look too busy, and too busy means cramped and crowded. Match the colors of your walls to the colors of furnishings and bedding. By limiting the color palette, you can create an illusion of more space, as the lines between the elements will be blurred, thus making the eyes wander effortlessly around the room. This eliminates the contrast that can cause visual clutter. But to avoid making the space bland, add a few pops of color in small quantities using accessories and pillows.
- Create an accent wall.
Your room might be small, but that doesn’t mean you can’t have a wow-accent wall. Create a focal point by creating a variety on the walls – this will help avoid the boxy feel of a small room. Choose one wall (preferably the one where the head of the bed rests) and add a bold wallpaper, textured panels, murals, or an interesting paint effect like stripes or ombre. Keep the rest of the room plain in terms of color. If you’re not into a pattern, simply color that one wall with a contrasting color with the rest of the room, preferably an accent color that you will also incorporate using accessories.
- Add mirrors.
Placing mirrors within a small room will add depth and dimension. Mirrors also act as additional windows as it “brings in” more light to the room, thus making it look more spacious than it really is. Hang in some small mirrors and group them like a gallery wall. Or hang in one large mirror to instantly create the illusion of a bigger space. If you have a wardrobe that almost takes up one wall, try having mirrored closet doors for it. Just always keep the room tidy because reflected clutter can look twice as bad.
- Place a low unit.
A low storage unit of drawers, like those from houseboats, can be built around the edge of the room. It can store a lot of things as it would occupy the whole horizontal length of the wall, but it won’t look too bulky because it is low. Because of its height, it can be placed in a wall with a window without obstructing anything. When placed near a bed, it can serve as a bedside table, and the space across the window would be perfect as a desk space.
- Utilize different light sources.
Having multiple light sources can brighten up a small space, making it feel larger. Just don’t pick lights that are too bright – an overhead soft light with a lower wattage paired with sconces near the bed would be perfect to create a calming ambiance. Take note that we mentioned sconces, not a table or floor lamps. In a small bedroom, it’s best to keep away from lighting fixtures that would occupy precious floor space and tabletop spaces. Plus, sconces, especially those with swinging arms, can be placed in a more optimum position that can serve you better during your late-night reading or studying.
- Think vertically.
Given that you lack horizontal space, maximize your vertical space – the walls. Keep things neat with floating shelves. These storage fixtures can hold a lot of books, magazines, baskets, organizers and a lot of other things. Place vertical shelves on top of your desk and make all your office and school supplies within arm’s reach. You may place mountable rods to hang on small baskets and buckets to store small, miscellaneous items like pens, markers, scissors and even cosmetic items like eyebrow pencils.
- Hang window treatments higher.
To make your room look taller, hang your curtains higher. Install rods close to the ceiling and choose long draperies that reach (or almost reach) the floor. Also, pick a rod that is much wider than your window, and arrange the curtains in a way that it covers just a bit of the window and a portion of the wall. This easy fix can really make a difference.
- Give your bed another purpose.
The bed is primarily used for sleeping and resting. But if your bed’s right or left side is pushed against a wall, it can be transformed into a makeshift daybed that can serve as seating for your lounging and working on your a laptop placed on a foldable table. This can save you some desk space. Also, adding a small coffee table can complete the look.