How to Make a Small Space Bigger

Sometimes, it feels like everything in life is big.

Big plans. Big dreams. Big ideas.

But what do you do when you don’t have a big space for all those big things you want to do?

A client recently reached out to me with this exact concern. There were a lot of big things she wanted in her new condo:

  • A dedicated home office with space for dual monitors
  • The ability to throw cozy and intimate dinner parties
  • Space to host out-of-town friends and family visiting overnight

It may seem like a lot to accomplish in just 600 square feet of space, but I had big plans to make this a minimalist and functional area for her to work, relax, and entertain.

Creating A Space Plan

Have you ever seen the perfect piece of furniture, art, or home decor while shopping? You probably spotted it and immediately fell in love, knowing that you just had to have it and exactly where you wanted to put it. You bought it, brought it home… 

… and it didn’t fit.

Whether it was too big or too small, the wrong colour or shape, or just didn’t fit in with your other furniture, that moment of realizing the piece you loved won’t work is disappointing. 

A space plan helps you avoid that disappointment and create a strategy for your space. This is especially important for small spaces like this condo. A space plan allowed me to see what pieces of furniture would fit, and more importantly, where they would fit. 

Taking the time to put that puzzle together meant more of those precious square feet could be used effectively.

Multi-Functional Spaces With Multi-Functional Furniture

Furniture that serves more than one purpose is ideal in small spaces, but making sure that multi-purpose furniture is used effectively is key. The space plan allowed me to take inspiration from the flow of the room. By being able to see exactly what would fit where, I could select pieces that would meet my client’s needs.

The area next to the front door may not be the first place you think of putting an office, but a large desk with room for dual monitors fit there perfectly. 

Dedicating permanent space to a dinner table and seating for hosting dinner parties wasn’t realistic for this space. By creating a drop zone in the kitchen with a console that could transform into a dining table, I was able to create a space that was functional for everyday living as well as for gathering with friends. 

As for seating, each piece was chosen so that it could be used in multiple ways. The ottomans and living room chair allow for comfortable spots to relax and unwind, and a comfortable desk chair was needed for the home office. 

When all that seating comes together around the dining table? A functionally stylish space for sharing a meal.

And in the living room, a comfortable and stylish couch that transforms into a sofa bed allows a cozy place for guests to spend the evening.

Small spaces can seem overwhelming to redesign. By making sure you know what you want to get out of an area and creating a space plan that supports those goals, even the smallest space can unleash its big potential.

Here’s what my clients had to say about their experience:

Working with Natalie Cox on the design process before and after I moved into a condo relieved a great deal of stress over the last 11 months. Natalie’s talent and attention to detail turned a space into a home. I love every piece that I chose based on her design. Natalie’s commitment to excellent service was evident from start to finish. I would not hesitate to recommend Natalie and hope to work with her again on future projects.

Jessie Chauhan – Ottawa

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