AN INTERIOR designer who lives in a 520sq ft apartment in the heart of New York City has revealed the tips and tricks she uses to instantly make her home feel bigger.
Chelsey Brown shares her DIY hacks and renter-friendly decor ideas to help those who, like her, don’t have much room to play with in their living space.
She swears by second-hand furniture and clever DIY decor to help disguise how small her apartment really is, as well as investing in tall mirrors to open up the space.
Room dividers have helped her to create a “bedroom” in her studio apartment and she proves how where you place your furniture within a room can be a simple hack to creating more room.
According to Chelsey, you can never have enough mirrors.
Not only are mirrors a great way of tricking a space into looking bigger than it actually is, they can also help to cover up any unwanted artwork in rented spaces which you can stash behind them and often add a lavish touch too.
“It’s a great little hack for utilising every crevice in a smaller apartment,” she told Insider.
“The more mirrors you have, the bigger your space will feel,” she insists.
Whatever floats your… couch
Most people tend to position their sofas up against a wall, but Chelsey argues that placing a couch in the centre of the room so it is “floating” in the middle of the space can actually be more practical.
For her, her sofa sits in the middle of her living space and it’s allowed her to create a makeshift desk/dining table behind it.
Creating that division helps break up one space and instantly feels like you have a whole other section to explore.
Under the illusion
For Chesley, her doorway opens up right into her kitchen and rather than keep it as an entryway, she decided to make her kitchen space look bigger than it is by disguising the door frame as a wall.
Her go-to is peel & stick wallpaper that can be easily applied and just as quickly removed if need be.
At a quick glance, you can’t even tell there is a door there and it just looks like a feature wall alongside the kitchen worktops.
Divide and conquer
Studio apartments can sometimes make you feel like everything is on top of you – and that’s where Chelsey says you need to be savvy.
Investing in room dividers helps to section off space to give you a little more privacy and make it seem like you have more bedrooms than you do.
In her apartment, Chelsey has created a “bedroom” space by installing a chic room divider that pulls out across the room.
A gallery wall centres attention directly to one area of the room, creating a cute little dressing area space right next to her bed. Chelsey recommends drawing features up onto the ceiling in small spaces to give the illusion that it is bigger than it is.
She told her 52k followers on Instagram: “One of the coolest DIYs I’ve done is hang artwork on the ceiling. This was honestly just a test to see if I could successfully do it (remember, not all DIYs work out!), and now that I know I can, my next apartment will probably look like Versailles.
“This is a great hack if you have shorter ceilings, as the artwork draws the eye-line upwards and created the illusion of a larger space.”
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Meanwhile, check out how this single mum turned a tiny 325-square-foot house into a dream pad for her daughter – including clever storage hacks.
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