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Yumi Murayama of Yu+ME Designs' open concept dining room and living room design

Design Your Small Space Like A Pro

Creative solutions are key when designing small spaces. Yumi Murayama of YU+ME Design gave us insight into designing for small spaces.

Yumi Says…

People often get discouraged trying to make a small room feel airy and spacious. It can be challenging because people generally want to fit all their furniture and accessories into that limited space, yet don’t want it to be cluttered. Many people think that small scale furniture and accessories are the answer when it comes to furniture a small space, but that’s a myth.

Here are tips to furnish and decorate your small space like a pro…

Bedroom Design by YU+ME Design
Design by YU+ME Design

What type of furniture is suitable for small spaces?

  • Low-profile furniture – If you have more overhead space, the room looks much bigger and spacious.
  • Go big – Instead of using many small pieces to fill in the empty area, creating a very busy and cluttered look, I recommend going with full-scale furniture to maximize the square footage. Choose fewer, bigger pieces rather than too many small pieces.
  • Choose multifunctional furniture – If it’s multi-purpose, like a coffee table with storage solutions, or extendable dining table, use it!
  • Storage is key – Try a tall, wall-mounted storage unit to hide all small items. Open shelves are great if you can keep them looking organized and decorated nicely. It’s better to go with a covered storage unit to hide your items while still providing easy access.

Before selecting furniture, follow these tips to save time and energy.

Focus on your lifestyle and needs

Living room Design by YU+ME Design
Design by YU+ME Design

It’s very important to understand how you want to use the space and who is using the space before even looking for furniture pieces. Depending on that, you can determine what type of furniture is suitable to accommodate your needs.

Measure your space first

I see so many people search for furniture without the floor plan dimensions, which eats up your energy and time without accomplishing much. Without this information, you end up not only receiving the wrong size, but also wasting time to return and exchange. Worst case, you might not be able to return. It often happens when it’s a special order item. Measure, measure, measure, and then space plan!

Discover your style

In order to create cohesive interior space, understand what interior style you really love to live in. Look around your existing space and ask yourself what you like or dislike. It’s part of the discovery process. The more you know your dislikes, you can get closer to what you want to achieve in your space.

Discover your preferences as you go through interior design magazines and online interior sites, like Casaza! 🙂 During this process, focus on the overall look and feel, and don’t worry about individual furniture pieces in the inspirational photos.

Make a furniture shopping list & budget sheet

Kitchen Design by YU+ME Design
Design by YU+ME Design

The list keeps you focused on what you really need to look for and you can find furniture that fits around your budget. The list also allows you to determine where and how to allocate budget.

Pro Tip: Invest in the large piece that you use on a daily basis. Invest in good quality furniture that you use heavily so you enjoy it for a long time. In the long run, you’ll save a lot of money and time by making that initial investment.

Allocate budget on decorative items, which are very important to complete your space. Without decorating and styling, your space can look empty and cold.

Pro Tip: Make the small space look bigger with a gallery wall, which keeps your eyes up. You will see the entire space instead of individual furniture pieces, which helps the small space look bigger. Gallery walls are also a great way to express your personality and showcase your favourite art!

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