When purchasing furniture and placing it in your apartment, think “double” about how the piece can serve its purpose plus maximize storage. Try an ottoman with a cushion that lifts up (a “toy box” for your stuff), go for a coffee table with lower shelf or place a skirt around it to create hidden space. Create storage behind chairs by angling them in corners. That way you can stow baskets of books and more behind them.
Shelving that extends from floor to ceiling makes use of every square inch of wall space and draws the eye up for an elongating effect. Look for modular units that allow you to build wall-to-wall and floor-to-ceiling storage. You’ll “find” more space that way, rather than using individual dressers, bookshelves and cabinets. Storage with wall-mounted desks built in even create a tidy, efficient work space.
Platform beds often provide storage drawers underneath, but any bed can be raised to create a “lower level” of storage that’s ideal for seasonal clothing like sweaters, or memorabilia like photographs and papers. Purchase bins designed to fit under your bed. Clear plastic containers allow you to easily see what’s inside, and this works if you’ll use a bed skirt to cover the clutter. Or, go for basket designs to add a designer finish.
Need extra kitchen counter space and a serving station in the living room? A wheeled kitchen cart will do the trick. Not only can you store items in the cart’s baskets, the surface doubles as a workspace for cooking or dining, and as a serving surface anywhere you roll it.
You’re already maximizing your storage with floor-to-ceiling-to-wall modular storage, but there are more ways to find space in your right-sized apartment. Win more storage in the bathroom with an over-the-toilet storage unit. Trade your bed’s headboard for a couple of mounted shelves, where you can place books, pictures and other items that might otherwise clutter a nightstand. Keeping a nightstand? Make sure it has drawers so you can make the most of that bedside space.
Perhaps this tip seems obvious, but aside from mounting the T.V., we also suggest keeping that console underneath to use for storing DVDs, books and other items. You’ll instantly gain shelf and counter space in your media center.
There is a range of closet organizing systems out there, and you don’t need a fancy configuration to maximize a small walk-in or even a basic hall closet. Our advice: Look up, look down. Utilize wall space above the rod for multiple shelves where you can store items in containers. Shoe organizers and more shelves underneath the hanging space will buy you floor room.
See what some of our Judson Park residents have done to maximize their small-space living lifestyles »