Canada's Condominium Magazine
Interior decorating can be a great deal of fun. Picking out patterns, comparing paint samples, finding that perfect lamp to compliment your furniture, and putting your personal touch on the place can make your house (or condo) feel that much more like home. The question is, where do you start? It is not always easy to decorate a smaller space, such as a condo, especially if you are used to much larger digs. The following are some tried-and-true expert tips for decorating your condo.
The Three P’s – Planning, Precision, and Pizzazz
The key to decorating any space is planning. This is especially true when you have more stuff than space. Plan your condo’s décor and layout from top to bottom. Figure out how you plan to use each room of your condo, make plans for your furniture and necessities, and decide what you do not want or need.
Be precise by measuring everything… floor space, balcony, furniture, shelves, paintings, etc. Make sure that everything will fit neatly. It is also a good idea to measure your door before you even begin moving in. You do not want to drag a couch all the way upstairs, only to find out that it will not fit through the door.
Above all, be creative. This is your space, and you can make it exactly the way you want. If there is something you cannot live without but do not have room for it, then make room. If storage space is lacking, you can always create some by building or adding shelves, turning larger than needed closets into office space, combining rooms, and hanging things from the ceilings.
Build a large cabinet that extends along an entire wall. You can customize it for all your needs. Include a section for your TV, as well as various sections for electronics, movies, and games. You can also include drawers that act as a dresser, a bookshelf, shelves for décor, a pull-out desk, and more. The sky is the limit with custom furniture.
Invest in Darker Furniture and Classy Décor
Decorating your home in this way will make it look bigger. Monochromatic walls and furniture add a stylish, modern look to your condo. You can add little splashes of color around the condo and add your personal flair to the décor without overdoing it. This will make your space look warm and inviting without being too distracting.
Tuck, Tuck, Tuck Away
Another great idea for increasing space is to tuck away anything that you do not use often so that you can make more room for the things that you do frequently use. In my last apartment, I did not have a pantry, and cabinet space was limited. As a solution, I bought a large shelf and placed it in the coat closet I did not need. This became my pantry, as well as a place to store things I did not want the kids getting their hands on.
Green Thumb’s a Plus
Urban living can often mean there is a significant lack of greenery and nature. Perk up your space by creating a small garden on your balcony. You can completely transform your balcony into a private oasis, where you can escape the daily grind and breathe in the sweet smell of nature. If space permits, add a hammock for added comfort and serenity.
If you are downsizing to a smaller space with kids, you may find that somebody is not happy about having to share a room. This problem can be solved with a little ingenuity. Place a large curtain or divider in the middle of the room to separate it into separate spaces, and let each kid decorate their half the way they want it. Another idea is to build a custom, double wardrobe that can act as the separator. The wardrobe could have doors and drawers on the front and the back. One child’s belongings can go in one side, while the other child’s clothes and things go in their side. It will open up that space, while leaving the closet open for additional storage or some other use.
Cords Be Gone!
If you have a lot of electronics, you may feel like you are drowning in cords. If you own your condo, you can run cords through the wall. Out of sight, out of mind. If you are renting, you may not be able to get away with this. An alternative option is to hide cords behind furniture and decorations. To conceal cords while also making your living area look more neat and open, place electronics on the lower and middle shelves of your entertainment center. Drape a skirt over it and place decorations on top.
If you have high ceilings, another great investment could be a loft. This is especially useful in studio apartments. A loft above the kitchen (or anywhere else you want to build it) could work as a combination bedroom and office. This will also leave you with more floor space for decorating… and entertaining.
Regardless of your personal taste and the size of your condo, all it takes is a little creativity and determination to make it feel like home.