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Small Space!! Sign In/Join 

I need help decorating my small living space. We have a rancher with a small living/dining room right beside the kitchen and I am having a terrible time figuring out how to best decorate to make it a warm, welcoming place. Any ideas would be greatly appreciated...I'd like to try to work with the furniture I already have, but adding in accents and things of that nature.


Living Room Collage
Posts: 1 | Location: United States | Registered: Nov 20, 2012Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Picture of Froo Froo
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Welcome. You're not only dealing with a small space, but an open concept space. Things to address are: form, function, focal point (existing or created), furniture scale, traffic flow, utilizing vertical space, color/pattern/texture interest as well as color flow, defining the entry (example is via a rug or runner, anchoring and defining areas via creative furniture placement and/or area rugs. Also, play with lighting at various intensities and placement. Opt for furniture pieces that are streamlined, offer storage and/or do not take up actual or visual space. Examples are things like nesting tables, small dressers, flat topped chests, glass topped tables preferably in rounded shapes, armless chairs, ottomans or backless benches. The existing possition of the sofa could be improved as it's currently aimed toward the dining area. If the window it is backed to offers a pretty view, bring the sofa out into the room facing the window with it's back toward the dining area. If space permits, a shallow sofa table or dresser could be placed along the sofa back and utilized as a dining buffet table. A solo or twin buffet lamps placed atop the sofa table or dresser to not only provide illumination for those seated, but for serving food as well. The dresser option will have the added plus regarding storage. A good source of pics and tips for small spaces might be of help on
Posts: 18779 | Location: Right here, duh! ;) | Registered: Nov 03, 2005Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Picture of Froo Froo
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Hello again. I reevaluated your pics. It does not appear that my initial layout suggestion is doable. If/when budget permits look into one of three different dining options that will free up valuable floor space that your existing dinette set is occupying. One is to sell/donate or gift the current set and shop for a bistro or pub set that is smaller in scale. Another is to research nesting tables that house folding chairs. The small footprint dining sets are made for tight spaces and when not in use, are very compact often featuring folding leaves. Yet another option is to research "telescopic" coffee tables that can be elevated while in front of your sofa to act as a dining table. Folding chairs stored perhaps under a bed or ottomans can be pulled opposite the table creating seating up to four.
Posts: 18779 | Location: Right here, duh! ;) | Registered: Nov 03, 2005Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Picture of WWanda
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Get a smaller dog for one Smile just kidding.

I would place the sofa on the long wall and two small chairs in front of the windows. I was also thinking that a rectangle shaped table instead of round would take up less space.

Posts: 4866 | Registered: Feb 12, 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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A friend had a similar layout in her condo. She decided to add extra counter space and a kitchen eating area with an island. She did it cheaply with a couple of discarded upper cabinets, (fastened back to back with a larger overhanging island top of formica). With a couple of high stools, she then had an eating area and extra work space, plus extra storage space in the kitchen.
Then she moved her dining table and chairs in front of the windows. In a small space a few extra steps are not a big deal.

A couch could go against the wall, with tv or entertainment area across from it?

I personally would ditch the green swag drapes, and maybe just have blinds or cream colored sheers. Perhaps a different pre-owned couch from Craig's List could modernize in the future?

btw: I like your St. B. I think every dog lover can benefit by own a really big dog sometime in their life. You learn there are no excuses for a toy breed, pulling someone around on a walk! Wink
Posts: 9678 | Location: Plains & Mountains | Registered: Jun 08, 2003Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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FIRST OF ALL, I thought that was my dog at first! lol! is yours a Brittany; mine is . . .
SECONDLY, maybe I am just over the top, but personally I think you need some color! There is nowhere that 'jumps out' or 'pops' right now; i would suggest a brightly colored rug, and/or curtains. Fabrics are wonderful; easy to change mood of room with a quick switchout.
THIRDLY, I can relate; my kitchen opens into dining room, which is open to front room, but all one after another; very long and narrow. I think if you had some common pop-of-color- connecting the rooms, say teal pillows on sofa, teal runner on dining table, teal kitchen curtains to connect all rooms. Or orange, or red.
FOURTHLY, I think your curtains are trying to be more formal than what is in rest of house.
FIFTHLY, keep watching HGTV and best of luck.
LASTLY, pet your poochie for me; looks like a sweetie!

This message has been edited. Last edited by: miss_vicki,
Posts: 4 | Location: Michigan City, Indiana | Registered: Nov 21, 2012Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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First I notice you have the collage of pictures centered in the wall....they should be centered over the black table. I would take down the green drapes and put up white sheers and put the couch on the wall under the high up windows. Bring your dining room table more into the center of the opening to your kitchen. Two of the dining chairs could be put in front of the bigger window with a small table between them and a lamp on the table. I would like to see a smaller dining table but you did not say how many eat there. A longish, narrow table could look better, I think. Keep all things in your room simple.

love life
Posts: 1569 | Location: omaha, ne U.S.A. | Registered: Sep 18, 2002Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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The way you've decorated it now, it still looks relatively open and spacious. I'd also recommend white sheets instead of green sheets. It opens up your room more.
Posts: 6 | Registered: Nov 29, 2012Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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With small spaces, it's often best to decorate with a minimalist approach. It's easy to over decorate and make the space look too busy. I would suggest finding some artsy wall decals that don't cost too much but add a really nice touch to the room.
Posts: 19 | Registered: Sep 12, 2012Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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1) If you have a small space use small pieces that fit the scale of the apartment. Your space will feel bigger.
2) Keep it clean!

3) Get rid of the clutter. Have a place for everything and then everything can go back in its place.

4) In small spaces, there never seems be enough space for clothing, books, electronic media, work areas but rather than lots of traditional freestanding dressers, cabinets, desks, etc. consider built-ins and modular furniture systems that can be configured to fit your space wall-to-wall and floor-to ceiling and accommodate all your storage needs in one compact area.

5) Dual purpose! Look for multiple uses in everything you buy. An ottoman is cozy, but an ottoman with hidden storage is even better.

6) Furniture with legs feels less heavy in a space than pieces that sit directly on the floor.
Posts: 4 | Location: London | Registered: Jul 30, 2013Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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I agree about the curtains changing to white, that was the first thing I noticed!

Also wall decals would be a nice addition! Smile

Unique collections of restoration style maps for a beautiful addition to your home decor!
Posts: 18 | Location: Vancouver | Registered: Feb 28, 2014Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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