Apartment-Size Sofas and Seating. Companies such as West Elm and CB2 have developed a whole range of apartment-size sofas and seating for small-space dwellers, and for good reason: The sofa is usually the most space-consuming furniture piece in a home. Opt for sofas that have a shallower depth, 37 inches or less. Skip oversized, rolled arms — which can waste a foot or more of floor space — and pick a modern, streamlined style with thinner arms. Less arm space also means more seating; in fact, an armless sofa or a one-armed chaise is the ultimate space-saving seating solution.
Add an Accent Wall. If you’re in love with a bold shade that would overwhelm the room if used on all four walls, an accent wall is one of the best living room paint ideas to inject color and create a focal point in your room. The best accent walls highlight an architectural feature or frame a well-considered collection of artwork. Keep in mind that an accent wall doesn’t have to be limited to one color: stripes are a great way to tie together several colors in your decorating palette.
Warm up your home with deep tones during the winter: Using reds, oranges and yellows in your home paint decor can make the home seem more welcoming from the outside or warmer on the inside – especially during the winter. If you are selling a home during the winter and are planning to paint, keep this in mind.
Flooring. Tile flooring is common in bathrooms and offers a nice alternative to hardwoods, which can get warped if they are exposed to too much water. If you decide to put ceramic tile on the floor, look for a grade of 1 or 2, a water-absorption rating of less than 7 percent and a coefficient of friction above .60, which are slip-resistant and can stand up to water. Also pay attention to porosity; you’ll want a more impervious tile for the floor because of exposure to water. Vinyl feels better on bare feet than ceramic tile, and it’s one of the more popular flooring choices as it’s inexpensive and practical (safe, easy to install and maintain).
Metallic Wall Paint. If your room is naturally dark, metallic paints add a warm sheen to your walls. They require several coats to apply but are worth the final effect. Both Ralph Lauren and Sherwin Williams sell easy-to-use metallic paints in a variety of colors. The wall in the image below is painted in a metallic steel paint color.
Add Wallpaper. Just because your bedroom is small doesn’t mean it has to be dull. Add a bold wallpaper pattern to a focal wall, like your headboard wall. Wallpaper tends to get a bad rap for making rooms look small and cluttered, but using the right style and technique does just the opposite. Add a bold wallpaper pattern to a focal wall, like your headboard wall. When selecting wallpaper, choose a large-scale pattern over a small, busy one. Don’t forget to create a cohesive look by coordinating your bedding with your beautiful, new wallpaper. Renters, you can play will wallpaper too. Have a look at our article for removable wallpaper.
Color Accents. Now you’re ready to give your small living space a personal touch. Adding some color, texture and interest to your basics will keep your apartment from looking like a furniture showroom. Layer textiles such as pillows and throws on your seating. Choose 20- or 22-inch-square pillows that can double as floor cushions. Add wall canvases and decor in bold tones. Finally, the right area rug will warm up your space while adding color and pattern. Below are some of our favorite accent pieces. Don’t give up on your apartment just because it’s small. Give it the high-design look you’ve always wanted; it’s easier than you might think, thanks to these products and tips. The saying “Good things come in small packages” is popular for a reason. Use it as your small-apartment-living mantra.
Use colors from your past: Many color consultants will say that using familiar colors from your childhood that remind you of fond memories – especially in the kitchen – can bring those memories back and create a pleasant mood. If you can’t remember any colors from your kitchen when you were growing up, just remember that reds and yellows are perfect for playful yet sophisticated kitchens.
We also have some ideas for color accents to make your space your own. Before you add any furniture to your small apartment, take a weekend to organize and clear your place. Go through your closets and cabinets, and donate or discard anything you don’t need or haven’t used for some time.
Go Big. Not only do large mirrors look impressive, they also help you bring in light. Depending on your space and style, you can try adding a frame around the mirror to give it a more polished appearance. Leaving it unframed works for more minimalistic spaces.
Find home improvement inspiration to create bathrooms, kitchens, garages, home offices, decks, patios, and entryways you'll love. Whether you want to customize a basic builder design, renovate an old home, or learn how to remodel a kitchen or bathroom, you can create your dream home with smart planning and the right home improvement contractors. Browse our home remodeling ideas for projects that fit your time frame, budget, and style. Poke the picture and try new interior and exterior paint colors for free with our virtual Color Finder tool, and take our countertop and floor finder quizzes to discover your perfect material matches. We also have weekend home improvement project ideas, home plans, kitchen and bath planning guides, and storage solutions.
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