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Make the most of the space you have with some of these clever ideas.
1. Double Duty
Modular furniture, especially corner units, gives you the maximum amount of seating when space is tight. Instead of a large coffee table choose an ottoman that can act as extra seating or, with the help of a tray, hold a couple of drinks.
2. Wall Art
The owner of this apartment removed a section of a non load-bearing wall to open up the rooms and let light in. She then replaced the redundant door with a bookcase to create a display area for her collectables.
3. Bold Statements
Overscaling can work wonders in a limited space. Rather than a lot of little elements, choose large pictures and dramatic pendant lights to create impact. Painting the walls a deep shade also helps to make them recede.
4. Curtain Call
Keep your window treatments simple. Instead of elaborate curtains, go for drapes hung as close to the ceiling as possible to create the illusion of height: alternatively use shutters or blinds.
5. Light Work
When choosing furniture, look for designs that give an unobstructed view right down to the floor like these versatile, cantilevered side tables designed by Caron-Leah Resnick of Eklekt Design Consultancy. They also work well for TV meals.
6. Mirror, Mirror
Mirrors are the obvious way to make rooms appear larger. Use them to back shelves or cover cupboard doors to make them “disappear”. Here, cubes clad with mirror take the place of a coffee table and blend into surroundings. Décor by Sarah Hume.
7. Going Up
Choosing oversized furnishings is another trick to detract from a shortage of space. Next to this bedside table, a tall, suede covered headboard with an unusual shape was introduced to draw the eye upwards.
8. Fully Booked
Take advantage of every inch of wall space. In this apartment the entire wall is fitted with shelves that not only provide good storage space for books, but also create a dramatic backdrop for the furnishings. Interior décor by Sarah Ord Interiors.
9. Tone Down
Keeping to a monochromatic colour scheme also helps to create the illusion of space. Vary the textures and sheens in the room to allow subtle contrasts to give the room interest. Note how the cupboards have been cleverly fitted in next to the bathroom entrance. Interior décor by Sarah Ord Interiors.
10. Clear Vision
Transparent materials such as glass and Perspex are ideal for compact homes. As you literally see through it, furniture in these materials takes up very little space visually and works well in both modern and classic interiors. Cladding the walls with mirror and exposing the rafters also help to create the illusion of space. Décor by Inside Out Interiors
11. Dining in Style
Tables with a central support take up less visual space than those with four legs and let you squash in an extra chair when more guests arrive.
- Eklekt Design Consultancy Tel: 082 771 0494
- Inside Out Interiors Tel: 021 790 9588
- Sarah Hume Tel: 083 604 0800
- Sarah Ord Interiors Tel: 082 378 2155
- Suttie & Marals Designs Tel: 082 448 8222
Text by Coba Kodelitsch, Andrew Mackenzie and Mary Jane Harris. Photographs by Mark Lanning, Sallly Chance, Christoph Hoffmann, Vanessa Lewis and Acpsyndication.com. Taken from the February 2010 edition of Garden and Home
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