Interior Advice | Adding Style to a Narrow Space

Last week we talked about dealing with small spaces.  This week we're going to discuss another design challenge: narrow spaces!  Narrow spaces could be anything from a small bathroom to a side yard.  This skinny areas can be found all over and can oftentimes be difficult to work with.  So today we're going over some different ways that you can make narrow spaces look a little less awkward and a lot more functional.

If we had to sum up the overall method we suggest you take when decorating a narrow space, it would be to follow the same rules of form and function that you would with any other space--however, you may have to pick and choose which of these are best to focus on in your narrow space.

For instance, you'll want a main focal point.  This is not any different from decorating any other space, but in a narrow space, you'll want to be careful to consider where that focal point is and how it makes the rest of the space feel--smaller or larger?

You'll also want to consider color and determine how the color effects the way the space feels.  In a narrow space, you'll likely want to select a color that opens the space up instead of making it feel more cozy.

Create a little bit of a distraction--this can be done in different ways but the main goal is to make people look at the room as a whole instead of focusing on how narrow it is.  Make sure the space has the layers and style necessary to hold it's own rather than just turning into a junk corner.  Odd-shaped spaces can have style too!

Don't highlight hard edges in a narrow space!  Make the room feel soft and open instead of harsh and square.  Go with more organic shapes when decorating instead of square objects.  This goes for art too--since what's on the walls affects the overall emotion associated with the space.  Pick something that appeals to the softer side of your senses.

Focus on the height of the furniture you bring in to a narrow space.  If you select furniture that is low and streamlined, you could be contributing to something called the "corridor effect" where a narrow space begins looking and feeling like a corridor because the furniture is too low.  Bring in taller pieces and vary the heights so that the eye is distracted from focusing on the shape of the room because it's moving over the varying levels of furniture!

And, of course, pay attention to lighting!  Consider the type of light you're bringing into a narrow space (LED, incandescent, fluorescent, etc)  and the location.  You may struggle with where to place lamps if there isn't a lot of room for tables, so narrow spaces often have hanging lights or wall scones.  Even though you may be forced to incorporate this type of lighting, it adds a little extra style and detail that will go a long way in the overall look of the space.  

There ya go!  Hopefully those tips help when you come upon that frustrating narrow little corner of your home that you just can't figure out what to do with.