Living in Oklahoma City, you might find yourself short on living space. Making a living room accommodate large furniture, a dining area and all your belongings is no easy task. However, there are ways to visually expand your space — increasing functionality while making it much more inviting.
The key to managing a small apartment all boils down to tricking the eye into perceiving more space. You can do this by employing three interior design strategies: scale, light and movement. Whether you just moved in or have rented your space for years, a small apartment doesn’t have to be cramped. Try these 10 simple tricks to start maximizing the square footage you do have.
Bring furniture away from the wall.
It may seem counter-intuitive but resting your furniture against walls doesn’t guarantee a larger room. Moving your sofa a few inches away will create some breathing room, giving the appearance of more space. If you’re worried about storage, place a narrow console behind the sofa to store away cords and other items.
*Pro-Tip: Try angling your bed to create movement in your bedroom. It also helps the space feel more relaxing.
Emphasize the vertical.
Emphasizing the vertical space in your apartment increases the sense of openness, enhancing movement and flow. Consider adding a towing bookcase, a series of floating shelves or something as simple as a hanging farmhouse lightbulb fixture to expand the look of your ceilings.
Emphasize the horizontal.
Incorporating low-profile furniture pieces is one of the easiest ways to make a room look more expansive. However, we’re not restricting you to ground-sitting pieces. In fact, think mid-century modern — which is both low and leggy. Narrow furniture legs make your furniture more dynamic, creating flow and causing the eye to travel around a room.
Consider lighter color palettes.
Dark colors aren’t a bad thing but can make your apartment feel smaller. We recommend sticking with a neutral palette of whites, creams, grays and blues to help reflect light and make the room feel airy.
Use multifunctional furniture.
Multifunctional furniture is a lifesaver in small apartments and is perhaps the best way to streamline a room. Think about it — clutter gives the illusion of lacked space. An ottoman with built-in storage is fantastic for tucking away toys, books or blankets.
Or, if you’re trying to create space in your dining room, opt for an expandable table or one with drop leaves. This allows you to minimize its square footage when it isn’t in use and expand it whenever you have guests over.
Leverage the power of mirrors.
Adding a mirror is a great way to create a sense of openness, reflect light and views of the space. While a wall-to-wall one might be overkill, placing a simple full-length mirror against a wall is a classic way to add sophistication to a space. You can also incorporate smaller mirrors into an existing gallery wall. Another fun idea we’ve seen is placing a landscape orientation mirror above a mantel and layering vintage frames of various sizes.
Incorporate reflective pieces.
When you’re trying to make a small apartment feel bigger, try and incorporate as many reflective pieces as possible. Materials like lucite, chrome or gold pair well with matte finishes and neutral palettes. Lucite is particularly helpful in living rooms. It can provide the same functionality as a traditional coffee table without the added visual weight of a solid material.
Let in more natural light.
To expand the look of any room, make sure you’re not blocking out the windows. Not only does natural light make your space look bigger, the vitamin D can boost your mood. Avoid heavy window treatments and exchange for translucent shades or curtains. Hanging your curtains a little higher than the windows themselves will also help draw the eye upward.
Emphasize pathways for foot traffic.
When you’re laying out a small room, it’s natural to think you’re maximizing the space by pushing all the furniture pieces to the edges of the room. However, this can cause some issues as corners cause you to bump into things and trip. Try grouping the furniture to a section of the room that way guests can easily pass through. If you’re trying to distinguish multiple areas in a room, use various sizes of rugs to visually “assign” them.
Incorporate statement pieces.
Even though you may be working with neutrals, that doesn’t mean your apartment has to look like it came straight out of a Pottery Barn magazine. If you enjoy pops of color, go for it! However, incorporate it into focus pieces like artwork, textiles, glassware and accessories. Statement pieces are fantastic for creating drama and vibrancy.
The last note to remember.
Remember, the more items you have in a room, the more cluttered it will feel. Avoid displaying too many knickknacks. Narrow them down to your favorites and group them using the Rule of Three. The same goes for artwork, concentrate framed pieces on one or two walls and avoid overwhelming patterns.
Looking for an apartment in the Chisholm Creek area of Oklahoma City?
Chisholm Creek is one of Oklahoma City’s top-growing developments. From dining and shopping to recreation and nightlife, this 190-acre complex features venues like Top Golf, iFly, Cabela’s, Sidecar, Fuzzy’s Tacos and more. To find an apartment close to the action, contact our two nearby properties below to schedule a tour!
Quail Run // 405.755.6507
Quail Ridge // 405.755.5514