Whether you have the tiniest flat or the largest of houses, the useage of space is critical to maximise what you have, and make it feel as spacious as possible.
I came across this fantastic video on Youtube thats basically a tour of the most organised small apartment I have ever seen – the man has created space for everything in a stylish and functional way – definitely worth a watch – its inspiring – and there are a load of ideas that will make you think about your spaces in a new light I’m sure!
So, how would this work for you and your home?
Just looking at how a really small space can still house everything perfectly and without hassle, while functioning really well means that anyone, in theory, can get to this point (if they want to!) in their homes as well.
Its about getting the most out of space means thinking both horizontally and vertically, and specifically for your home and your needs.
Think about your home – if it helps, write down a floor plan and label the rooms that you have.
Are you using the rooms to their optimum abilities?
Do you really need a dining room, or do you really use the table in your kitchen? If so, can the dining room be relabelled with something thats more useful to you – for example a playroom or an office?
Thinking a little outside the box can immediately transform how you think about your home and the spaces in it – and also ensures that you aren’t wasting space while thinking that you have no space for storage etc….
Once you have the rooms laid out as you and your family would prefer to use them, then its time to look at each room and its contents a little more closely.
Whats needed in each room?
In each room, what do you need to store there so that everything thats done in that room has whats required to do those tasks.
For example – in a living room you may want to watch TV, play games, read magazines or books, listen to music and relax.
Therefore you require storage for books, magazines, DVDs, CDs, TV items, games, stereo items etc….
Once you have identified what goes in what room (and try if you can to keep one item to one room if you can as it makes upkeep so much easier than having lots of places they can be put back), you can start to think about storage availability.
What storage works for your needs?
You may find that you pretty much have the right amount of space and storage items already in that room, or you may find that thats the room thats really lacking – and needs tackling first.
For example – your bedroom houses clothes usually, but you are struggling to house them all there as storage is lacking – so you are storing clothes in other bedrooms and overspill is happening – making is more difficult to find things when you need them.
It could be simply taking a look inside the wardrobe and seeing what you actually need to store clothes better – could you double up your hanging space by having two rails in the space, or more shelves/drawers etc…? It may be that simple to make your wardrobe function better for you.
When you are looking at setting up systems and zones in your home for various activities – think about the space you have available.
If you can really assess a space before you decide on the storage solutions to add in – then you will get a space that works the hardest for your needs.
It also needn’t be expensive – once you have measurements of the space available, and details of what you want to store there (quantities also) – then you can often shop around to find containers that fit the space the best – or reuse items from around your home to better use in that specific space.
Think vertically as well as horizontally
Height is often forgotten when people try and maximise their space.
For instance – for my food cupboard I used a variety of storage solutions that meant I maximised all space within that cupboard – making everything accessible.
I took away containers that wasted space, and added in ones that stacked, and also made sure that each container held the right amount of an item i.e. a flour container could fit an entire pack of flour – so it was as practical as possible as well.
Don’t stick with shelves at certain heights if they don’t work for you – add in extra shelves, take some away – if you have very limited space consider double use furniture (i.e. storage bed, storage coffee table) as otherwise you are missing a trick.
Be inventive and you may well surprise yourself as to how much space you actually have.
I get a lot of inspiration from places such as magazines and pinterest – and there are so many inventive ways to maximise your space out there its just working out what would work best for you.
1. Work out the function of each space in your home
2. Ensure that you know what tasks are performed in each space
3. Understand what you need to store in each space to perform each task
4. Define your storage needs
5. Utilise horizontal and vertical space, and think of clever ways to utilise every square inch
6. If you don’t already have the storage items that you need, then shop around for those that work best for your needs
Let me know how you get on!