Marie Kondo may be making magic with her decluttering and organizing wisdom, but how do you make the most of what little space you have? As a resident of a small apartment, I can say that deciding what stays and what goes is only part of the problem. Flexibility is your focus. I think of it as juggling space, and I have some solutions and decorating tips for how to make it work in every room.
The kitchen can stand some decluttering. No one needs a full set of pots and pans, for example, or even a butcher block of knives. For what you have left, add vertical storage to taller shelf space with organizers or helper shelves.
Beds take up the most room in a small bedroom, so you have to make use of your under-bed storage space. A metal platform bed frame is the least bulky furniture option that will give you space underneath and won’t sag over time like traditional box-spring frames.
S-hooks will save you closet space when hanging jeans and pants, and they’re actually much easier to use than regular hangers. I also always install a simple cube organizer under a section of hanging shirts and sweaters that is fastened directly to the back of the closet.
If you’re lucky to have a window ledge, use it as a bedside table.
I finally mounted my TV to the wall, and I’m thrilled with how much room I gained with that small detail. You can install a textile to drop over the front when it’s not in use.
If I had a big picture window, I would install a shelf to make it feel like a cafe counter. But for now, I’m in love with pub tables. They’re counter height (which is great for kitchen prep!), and you can tuck the stools underneath.
My other favorite piece for a small living room is my fold-up wooden coffee table, which I can put away for more space when I need it. Buy floor cushions to sit on and eat, Japanese style. These pillows add to your home decor, and you can bring them out for more flexible seating when company visits, too.
Mariko is a high school English teacher who has three children, illegible handwriting and an obsession with mail-order artisan ice cream. She lives in Hawaii, but she makes a point to eat her way through big cities as often as she can.