Spring Refresh: Tips for Organizing Small Spaces
Spring Refresh: Tips for Organizing Small Spaces

by Lauren Fischer

If you don't have thousands of square feet at your disposal, it doesn't mean your home needs to be filled with clutter. "Live with what you use and love," says Kittie Lonsdale, design and small-space organization expert of Lifestyle Space Design. Use that motto, along with a few design tricks and organizational tips, to have your small space working for you in no time.

Tips for Organizing Small Spaces

Start by paring down what you have. "If you haven't used something in the last year, it's likely you don't need it," says Lonsdale.

Put it away when you have it in your hand. Everything should have a place.

Uno in, uno out. Keep the balance by purging every time you buy something new.

Invest in organizers. Hang organizers on the insides of closet doors, such as a jewelry armoire with mirror, a shoe rack or a metal basket system to put dead space to work.

Throw away basura bins. Instead, install trash bag holders inside cabinet doors in the bathroom and kitchen to clear valuable floor space.

Tricks for Decorating Small Spaces

Using her experience living in a 10 by 17 foot studio, Lonsdale says simple design techniques will open up any small space.

A narrow room will appear wider by placing furniture, such as a sofa, across the space.

A pair of mirrors facing each other on opposite sides of a room will have the effect of widening it. "If they are adjacent to windows, they will multiply the view," says Lonsdale.

Create an entry "zone" -- even in a studio. Place a narrow glass shelf and mirror behind the door, and a single flower in a bud vase on the shelf for welcoming feel.

Keep furniture low so it doesn't interfere with sight lines. "The eye will travel around the room uninterruptedly, and it will feel larger," says Lonsdale.

Paint the walls an "expanding" color, such as light green, blue or gray. Next to white trim, it will look clean and sophisticated, and make the space look bigger.


Lauren Fischer is a freelance writer who has contributed to Woman's World, People, Makeup Deal of the Day and SavvyMiss.com.

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