How to style your apartment to create space

Apartment living is becoming a more attractive option for many nowadays, but it can be a bit of an adjustment to those of us who are used to a little more space. Luckily there are a few tips and tricks you can utilise in the interior design process that can maximise the room you have to avoid feeling cramped.

Desin Scout Gold Coast apartment interiors
Image: Design Scout | Photo: Tanika Blair

1. Work to the space you have

Jacinta Platt from interior design studio Design Scout notes working to the space you have as the number one way to create space. If your bedroom isn’t particularly large, consider a queen bed over a king bed so the space doesn’t look crowded or cramped. Choosing the right sized furniture can go both ways. If your apartment features high ceilings, draw attention to the height with floor-to-ceiling sheer curtains. You can see inside this stunning Gold Coast apartment transformation by Design Scout in the QH Interiors digital edition 1, 2018 (online now).

Woodchip and Magnolia wallpaper
Image: Woodchip and Magnolia

2. Layer colours, textures and materials

It may be tempting to keep things as simple as possible in order to create space, but this can leave your home looking underfurnished and dull. Jacinta recommends having at least three layers to create a high-impact look. Think teaming wallpaper, a bedhead and a linen coverlet together, or mix a feature wall colour, artwork and feature cushions together. By mixing textures and colours (but staying in the same colour scheme) it doesn’t overwhelm the space while creating interest at the same time.


Design Scout apartment styling
Image: Design Scout | Photo: Louise Roche, Villa Styling

3. Mirror mirror on the wall

It’s probably the oldest trick in the book, but having strategically placed mirrors in your home is one of the most effective ways you can create the illusion of more space. If it’s available to you, place your mirror so that it reflects the view from your balcony or an open space leading into another room. Play around with the positioning and don’t be afraid to use multiple mirrors side by side, a geometric shape or something in a more traditional style.

Satara Australia apartment styling
Image: Satara Australia

4. Buy the right pieces, and less of them

A few statement pieces you love will do you more favours than a lot of furniture. Before moving into your apartment, or if you’re already living in an apartment, consider whether you could donate some pieces to charity or sell them to declutter your space. The type of furniture you own is important as well. Heavy side tables and bulky chests of drawers will appear to take up far more space than furniture that has exposed legs, even if they’re the same size. Keeping your furniture against the walls and risen above the floor will make your apartment look bigger.

Chaplins Furniture apartment wall mounted shelving
Image: Chaplins Furniture

5. Don’t be afraid to wall mount

Floating shelving is a beautiful storage solution that can look minimalist and keep some of your bits and pieces like books, plants and knickknacks off coffee tables, desks and the floor. Similarly in the kitchen, if you don’t have a huge amount of bench space, think of putting in a rod to hang pots and pans on, a magnetic strip for knives and so on. Just be wary of accumulating too much on the shelves, which can make your home appear cluttered. It’s a balancing act, but once you play around with it you’ll be happy you gave it a go.

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