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In an increasing bid to maximize economy, living spaces are becoming smaller to foster an increase in profit margins for land owners and to create more accommodation for the trooping number of settlers into commercially developed cities. But in a materialistic world, how does one cram more items into small apartments? Here are some tips to guide.

  1. Instead of taking up floor spaces, keep things in shelves. This frees up more space on a horizontal plane and makes the area seem wider. Avoid keeping shoes, bags and books on the floor. Build shelves and wardrobes and properly fit in stuff inside, to maximize space. Store things that are not for immediate use high up in shelves or cabinets.
  2. Use mirrors to create illusions. Yes, mirrors tend to make small rooms seem wider than they are because of the illusion of space they create. Unlike walls that simply block off, mirrors duplicate spaces because they portray virtual representations on their plane. But don’t just get any type of mirror to occupy more space on the floor or the reading table, carefully map out a section of the wall to install the mirrors. They can either take up a landscape style, hanging in a perfect space between ceiling and floor, or a portrait or vertical form where they are almost touching the floor or touching the floor but away from walkways. Create unique designs using mirrors. This not only creates the desired illusion; it also distracts the mind from paying attention to the size of the room and focuses it on the aesthetic effect of the designs.
  3. Use lighter shades of paint. Light colours make a place seem spacious because they reflect light. So instead of using darker shades of paint which absorb light and create shadows, use light shade paints to avoid shadows.
  4. Avoid clutter. Always be in the habit of getting rid of items you do not need- rough papers, disposable bags, old clothes, empty containers, cartons, spare utensils and extra furniture. Since it’s a small space and not a big house, keep items to the simplest minimum and remember some furniture can serve dual purposes.
  5. Use more light. Like earlier explained in 2 and 3, light creates space by expelling shadows. Use more lighting in your home. Over the years, innovations in home lighting have evolved to reduce energy consumption. Replace incandescent bulbs with energy saving fluorescents and better still, replace them all with LED lightings which consume less than 10 volts.

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This article was first published on 20th April 2016


Nnenna is an editor and writer at Connect Nigeria. She loves fine art, books and places.

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