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10 Tips for Designing Small Spaces and Micro Apartments

May 14, 2023

If you're one of those who live in tight, compact homes and love it, then you most likely understand the art of designing small spaces through mixing up a great balance between aesthetics and functionality. Regardless of the size, your living area should be an extension of your personality, where you can relax, entertain, and work efficiently. Instead of cramming stuff in every nook and cranny, these 10 tips will help you maximize the space while keeping your micro apartment or small space looking chic, stunning, and organized.

1. Plan and Prioritize Your Space

It is essential to plan your overall space and prioritize your needs before you start decorating your apartment. Assess the space, its limitations, and how you envision your micro apartment or small space. You might want to focus on creating three different zones: a living/entertainment zone, a sleeping area, and a workspace. It’s essential to have a clear plan in mind before you start shopping for furniture or decor. Measure and map out your apartment to maximize every inch and make use of every corner.

2. Use Multi-functional Furniture

Multi-functional furniture and transforming pieces are saviors for small space and micro apartments. Successful multi-purpose designs help you save space, money, and materials. With limited space, you don't want to fill your apartment with unnecessary decor or furniture. Instead, use furniture pieces that can perform multiple functions. For instance, look for a sofa that can convert into a bed, coffee table with extra storage, or a foldable table that can turn into a workspace.

3. Color and Patterns

When it comes to choosing colors for your small apartment, keep things bright and light. Dark colors absorb light and visually shrink the room. So, opt for neutral palettes, light shades, or even fun pastel tones. If you’re worried that it might look dull or plain, you can always add some pops of colors or patterns through scatter cushions, curtains, or rugs. Utilize textures and patterns smartly to create delineation, depth, and interest while avoiding clutter and visual distractions.

4. Good Lighting

Good lighting can change the entire look and feel of a room, making it look more spacious and brighter. It’s best to let natural light come in as much as possible, but also consider using additional lighting fixtures to brighten up dark corners. Mix up your ambience lighting with task lighting and have dimmers so that you can adjust the lighting on the go. You can hang pendant lights, place table lamps, or install wall sconces to light up the room.

5. Mirrors and Reflective Surfaces

Mirrors and reflective surfaces play a crucial role in small space design. They have the power to enlarge a room, brighten it, and make it appear more substantial. One rule that applies to mirrors is that "the bigger, the better." Floor-to-ceiling mirrors can give you an illusion of taller ceilings, while stylish mirrors can serve as decorative elements that brighten up your space.

6. Vertical Space

In smaller apartments, the floor plan is essential, so think about utilizing your vertical space. Wall-mounted shelves, floating desks, and high units that reach the ceiling are a smart way to maximize your space without sacrificing the floor. Floor-to-ceiling cabinetry can create a seamless backdrop that won't make the room feel cluttered. You can hang art in a vertical line or create a gallery wall upwards. This technique will draw the eye upwards and create the illusion of a higher ceiling and much more space.

7. Keep It Simple and Cozy

Keep everything simple and stick to a less-is-more philosophy. Minimalism is in, and it's the best way to create an open and cozy atmosphere. Keep your space warm and inviting with comfortable furniture and unique details that add personality. For smaller apartments, choosing a focal point is an excellent way to take away from the small space and bring attention to one area.

8. Don’t Block the View

In small spaces, it’s crucial to not block your view. Don't just adjust your space for aesthetics, but think smartly about how you use your windows and doorways. Sheer curtains that filter light and add privacy, while not blocking your view, are an excellent choice. You can also use see-through plexiglass furniture, which makes the room look bigger, and you can see through it.

9. Consider Space-Saving Storage

Consider using space-saving storage solutions to clear up clutter and keep your apartment tidy. You can utilize under-bed storage drawers, hang baskets on walls, or utilize shelves on using corners for displaying decor without sacrificing your floor space. Folding stools and table could be stored in small storage nooks and hung up on walls.

10. Personalize with Accessories

The final tip is to personalize your space with accessories that bring joy and creativity to your home. Designing small spaces and micro apartments doesn't mean you have to sacrifice your style. Use accessories like pillows, decorative cushions, and throws to incorporate your style, never let your space be stripped down of its personality.


Designing small spaces and micro apartments to look beautiful and functional can be challenging but with the right planning, furniture, color, and decor, it can leave a lasting impression. In summary, plan and prioritize your space, use multifunctional furniture, choose the right color and patterns, utilize reflective surfaces, maximize your vertical space, we stressed the importance of keep it simple yet cozy, don't block the natural light, consider space-saving storage, and lastly, personalize the room with accessories and unexpected details that show off your style.


I enjoy designing and curating experiences both virtually and in 3-dimensional reality.
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