7 Design Tricks to Make a Small Home Appear Larger
Posted 161 days ago by Betty Noonan
You’re decorating your very first home or apartment, and the space is a little smaller than you would have liked. But since it’s your starter home, it doesn’t need to include three bedrooms and two-and-a-half baths. There are simple and easy-to-do tricks to transform that small space to larger than life (or at least it will give the illusion).
You can create a “destination” within your home by using a focal wall or vignette. Rich paint colors or bold, graphic wallpaper make a small room scream sophistication and boldness. While placing bold colors and bold patterns in a large room would make the room feel overwhelming, it is just right for a small room.
To make your ceilings look higher and your bed look larger, use a canopy! This will give the illusion of a high ceiling and a large framed bed. To achieve this simple trick, use curtain rods positioned just below the ceiling: but make sure it’s framed above the bed on either side. Then hang simple fabric that’s loosely draped over the curtain rods.
With a small bedroom, use one bold piece of furniture to fill the room with character. Since the bed is the focal point to any bedroom, I suggest using a bold, graphic headboard using shabby-chic stencils, as seen on Better Homes and Gardens. Continue the look by adding accent pillows as well as a nice duvet cover that mimics the feel of the stencil on your headboard. Don’t be afraid to play around with colors!
Mirrors are Your Best Friend
Use mirrors to create depth. Better yet, devote a whole wall to mirrors of all shapes and sizes and add mirrored furniture to the small space to give the illusion there’s another room just beyond view. Have you noticed small restaurants like to use lots and lots of mirrors, and when you walk in your first thought is, “wow this place is big!” then realize it’s just all the mirrors? The same can be said about a small room with mirrors. Place some mirrors where there is a lot of natural light, so the mirror will reflect the light, amplifying the space.
For the Kitchen: Compact Your Wall Space
Taking a trip to Ikea or Home Depot could give your small kitchen some much needed space. By placing a variety of hanging shelves and wire baskets together on the wall, you are saving space and drawing a focal point to the room. These shelves and baskets provide more space than expected and allows you to focus and compact all your kitchen necessities together in one cohesive space.
Hang Pots and Pans From the Ceiling
Your workspace in the kitchen is sparse and you don’t have much cabinet space to store all your necessities, so finding a place to store all those big, bulky pots and pans can be tedious. For a simple improvement (that will also free up a lot of space) hang all your pots and pans on an overhead storage rack that hangs from the ceiling.
Less is More: Use Floor-to-Ceiling Shower Stalls
For that small bathroom, make your space feel cozy yet large with a floor-to-ceiling glass shower. If you had placed a tub and curtains up in the bathroom instead, it would have instantly cluttered up the space, making it look even smaller than it is. For some extra depth, use a tiled backsplash wall inside the shower with light tiled floor. Make the shower look large and inviting by always keeping the glass clean with window cleaner and a large squeegee.
Photo Credit: Apartment Therapy
Assess Your Furniture
If all your furniture is too large for small rooms, it’s not a good idea to try and cram all your beloved pieces of furniture. Opt for storing them or selling them to friends and family. The holidays are near so it might be a good option to donate your items as well. When your home is smaller, you want to avoid the overstuffed and oversized items and scale down. Find smaller furniture and remember to strive for balance in the room.
How did you decorate your small home or apartment? Let us know in the comments below!
Budget Decor: 5 Friends, New City, One Amazing Apartment
Posted 170 days ago by Amanda Raye
Meet Zach, Helene, Larry, Erin and CJ. Five creative friends who recently moved to NYC after graduating from Indiana University.
They landed this loft style apartment in Carroll Gardens, Brooklyn — a beautiful neighborhood known for it’s great food, architecture and community.
When B&C first stopped by their apartment the other day, this is not what we expected; most NYC apartments are extremely small and cramped. Their 3-bedroom 2 bath apartment, however, was spacious, bright and impeccably decorated.
With a group of 5 people, you’d think there’d be conflicts when it came to decorating, but according to CJ:
We had a spreadsheet we shared on google docs to keep track of who was bringing what since we were all living in different cities before we moved.
After receiving a tour, we noticed right off the bat that quite a few things were from Ikea, craigslist and thrift stores. Their most expensive item is the teal couch (above), purchased for $500 at a antique shop in Bloomington, Indiana.
Our favorite part of the apartment? The decorated the wall behind the couch, of course. Because all five roommates are in a creative field, everything on the wall was either original art from one of them, something belonging to a family member or something found in a thrift store.
All the picture frames were from Goodwill. All of our savings accounts were run dry after moving here so we couldn’t really afford to buy anything new during our first month.
For many people it would take months, if not years to actually have their homes this put together, but Erin says that wasn’t the case:
It took us about five days to decorate the apartment to look like this. We didn’t have internet installed during our first week so we had to find some way to stay productive.
We asked the group to offer some advice to Broke & Chic readers about moving to New York City. To which Erin said, “move with a group of friends. That way you’ll have a built-in support system.”
What do you think of this chic Brooklyn apartment? Let us know in the comments below!
*All photos by Zach Hetrick
Budget Decor: This Girl Knows How to Re-Decorate a Room
Posted 204 days ago by Amanda Raye
Have you ever heard of Sara Charlesworth? She’s the voice behind “Chalk White Arrow“, a beautiful lifestyle blog. Not only does Sara know how to be stylish on a budget, she knows how to decorate a room on a budget too!
Recently, Sara had the opportunity to decorate a little girls bedroom. According to Sara:
starting tomorrow i will begin my nine day venture of redesigning miss abigail’s room. i thought i would start off this design week special with the before photos so you all know just where we started. as far as the design i’m going for an overall cleaner and crisper feeling while still keeping true to abbeys tastes and styles. she has picked a robins egg blue-green and a bright red orange for the new room’s color scheme, then we’ll balance it out with some neutrals and bright whites as well.
Sara made a wonderful video to show her progress. If you’re thinking about re-decorating your room, make sure you watch this for inspiration!
painting stripes from sara charlesworth on Vimeo.
Here’s the big reveal! Most of the room is decorated with things from Ikea, Target and Urban Outfitters!
To learn more about Sara, make sure you head on over to her wonderful blog! Have you ever re-decorated a room? If so, send the before and afters to firstname.lastname@example.org for a possible feature.
Still Not Satisfied With Your College Dorm?
Posted 240 days ago by Amanda Raye
Alright, so you’ve been at school for about a month now. At this point you should have made a few friends, learned your schedule and written a paper or two. If you still don’t feel settled in, it could be because your home away from home is still a tad empty and impersonal. How many people do you know with a cool dorm room? Not many, Broke & Chic recently found two companies that could change that!
You don’t have to be in college to make these gems apart of your personal space! Get this…they’re stick-on headboards that won’t damage the wall…WHAT! They’re also fully repositionable and removable up to 100 times! According to their website:
It feels like silk and looks like paint on the wall.
These amazing stick-on headboards cost about $164.00 but lucky for you all, gLaM-a-PeeL is offering our readers a 20% discount until March 10, 2013! All you have to do is use the code chic20 during checkout.
*During checkout on the “coupon or gift certificate” link in blue enter the code chic20 in the box, it is case sensitive. Once entered click the little red arrow and it will adjust the price to a 20% discount!
If you end up sprucing up your dorm or bedroom with a gLaM-a-PeeL headboard submit your photos to email@example.com for a possible feature!
2. Scout by Bungalow
We’re girls meaning we’re all secretly makeup and accessory hoarders. This company has the most adorable and feminine collapsible storage bins. I happen to have two. One that holds my towels in the bathroom and another that holds all my beauty samples from Birchbox and Glossy Box! Since they come in fun patterns, they’re another great way to decorate.
Each of their Hang 10 bins cost between $17-$23!
Think you did a good job of decorating your space on a budget? Submit your photos to firstname.lastname@example.org!
DORMIFY’s Back to School 2012 Trends
Posted 299 days ago by Amanda Raye
Fashion isn’t the only thing that has trends, decor does too! Typically, decorating your dorm is the first time you are able to decorate a space entirely yourself. Most childhood bedrooms were originally designed by your mom. Well, in college, it’s all on you, it’s the place you’ll finally be able to discover your personal style.
Dormify, a company that specializes in bold interior design products meant to inspire college students, is here to tell you the secret of what’s trending in dorm decor for fall 2012!
1. Black & White
I think black and white will always be a classic when it comes to decorating and fashion. This contrast is a design statement that is inviting yet unapologetic. If you find yourself to be the type of girl who loves the classic look but is still bold, then this might be what your dorm room needs!
- Houndstooth Quilt: $89.00 at Dormify
- Black Sequin Pillow: $65.00 Dormify
The girly girl look will never be out of style! In order to really embrace your girly personality decorate your dorm with soft and elegant tones. This type of decor will take your sophistication and femininity up a notch…think Gossip Girls! Floral appliques, lace and a splash of shine will all add to the dreamy vibe you’re going for.
- Believe You Can Fly Duvet: $79.00 Dormify
- Flower Pillow: $75.00 Dormify
This is actually how I decorated my dorm room! I’ve always been attracted to the vibrant colors of India. So I found a way to portray that in my little space. The vibrant and spirited energy of these bright colors recharged, rejuvenated and made me look forward to each and every day. You could also go for the soft yet colorful looks from Morocco!
- Moroccan Sheet Set: $59.00 Dormify
- Reversible Oval Duvet: $70.00 Dormify
4. Haute Chocolate
This trend is meant for the girl who like warm tones. Let sequins bring out your inner diva and black and brown combinations show your modern side. The intertwined patterns and textures allow you to express yourself in the most luxurious ways. Just think of a cafe in Paris!
How do you think you’re going to decorate your dorm this year? Let us know if you use one of these dorm trends!
Budget Decor: Paul and Evi’s Modern Amsterdam Apartment
Posted 357 days ago by Amanda Raye
Meet Paul Veugen, the founder and CEO of Usabilla, a startup located in the heart of Amsterdam, and his fashionable girlfriend, Evi van Splunder, a corporate young talent recruiter.
Their beautiful Amsterdam apartment radiates modern minimalist Dutch design. From the unique white wood floors to their stunning kitchen with rustic wood cabinets. Every room follows an avante-garde black and white theme with dashes of color, namely from tulips, fruit, plants and lamp shades.
Kitchens are always the most important room in a Dutch home. As a culture, we very rarely go out to eat.
Love the look? According to Evi, “almost everything is from Ikea.”
Many people believe modern design to be very expensive, but great design can be very affordable if you know where to look! What’s your favorite part of Paul and Evi’s home? Broke & Chic loved all the tulips!
Broke & Chic hits up Amsterdam
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Budget Decor: Katie’s Eclectic Bedroom