Tips for Small Spaces

Evidently I have more to say about living in a small space than I originally thought. I intended to have 2 or 3 posts in this series but here we are in part 5! I am by no means an expert in small living, you can look to the tiny house movement for that, but I have found some ways to make living in a small space work better. Some obvious ones, some not so obvious, but all useful. 

Having less possessions. It helps to be really thoughtful with purchases. Here is one tip I always use to keep my stuff minimal -  if I think I want or need something I keep it in the back of my mind for a while. Sometimes even weeks and months. I’ll jot it down, look it up online, keep my eyes open in thrift stores for it, and then decide if I really want it or not. You will be surprised how many things you think you want and then a few weeks later you’ve totally forgotten about it or don’t care for it anymore. 

Honestly, I don’t understand how we still have enough to fill an apartment because it seems like I always have a bag of clothes and home stuff to donate. I love organizing and getting a rid of stuff and have a lot of thoughts on the subject. For now I’ll just leave you with one. Organizing and clearing things out on a regular basis. There have been so many times I have considered getting rid of something, kept it, and then never used it. Then when it comes time to organize and go through my stuff again I get rid of it. I don’t know why but sometimes it takes considering to donate an item several times for me to actually get rid of it. If I rarely go through my belongings I am apt to hang on to way more than I need. 

Taking advantage of vertical storage. Sometimes with rentals there is not a lot you can do, but we were lucky in that there was a lot of vertical storage built into our space already. We also purchased a taller bed and just having a foot of space under there makes a huge difference. We store clothes, crafts and winter accessories under there and I love that they are completely out of sight. 

Rearranging furniture even if it seems like it won’t work. I know in small spaces you feel like you don’t have a lot of options. We certainly did in our place! We kept the same arrangement in our bedroom and living room for a long time after we moved in. Then we started moving things around and realized there was a lot more creative ways to use the space than we realized. We just didn’t know it until we started trying it out. 

Getting outside. My husband and I joke sometimes that our fourth room is the outdoors. Spending as much time as we can outside helps us to feel less cramped when we are inside. We love going for walks down our street and going to the beach nearby. We don’t have a yard, but we do have a little landing outside of our door and for a while it was unused space, we thought it was too small to do anything with. Then we set out two camp chairs that took up every inch of space and started sitting out there and loved it. We bought the tiniest table and two chairs you could imagine, set up a garden box, planted some herbs and got some solar powered lights and the small “porch” became an oasis. I would have never thought I would love that space when we first moved in. 

Lastly, it has been key to remind myself of the reasons we chose to live where we do. We are learning so much about what is important and it is not our possessions or the walls surrounding us. I have to be intentional about being grateful for our tree-house apartment, and that is the most important tip of all. 

Rachel Zacchigna