How To | Making a Small Family Room Cozy

The family room is one of the most used rooms in the house with the exception of the kitchen. It’s a gathering place, a relaxing space, and entertainment area, and often one of the most seen rooms in your home. You want it to look good, feel good, and hold up to wear and tear. But if you’ve got a small family room, you may be frustrated because it feels cramped or you can fit enough seating in it for the number of people you’d like to accomodate. We get it. Small spaces can be tricky. So today we’re talking about how to furnish and decorate a small family room space.

The first and most obvious thing to do is to scale down your furniture. The thing about small spaces is that the furniture can’t fill them up if you want people to be in the space as well. So evaluate the type of furniture you’re using. Are the pieces streamlined and not overly bulky? Of course you want them to be comfortable but space is everything. So if you need to replace your super fluffy, oversized sofa with something that’s not as fluffy but still comfortable, then that’s what you need to do. A rolled arm on a sofa is basically a whole entire seat on a track arm sofa and that’s valuable property. Consider your chairs too. Some reading or accent chairs can be really deep and the back may even slant taking up additional space. Scale those stylized things down and use the space for more people or more seats instead.

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The next thing to think about when assessing your furniture is the number of functions it can have. The less pieces in a small space, the better. So the more each piece of your furniture does for you, the better. Little ottomans are great because they act as a foot rest, an extra seat, and a coffee table depending on how you use them. They’re also light weight and moveable so they’re a great multi-functional piece. Select case goods with lots of hidden storage. Those hidden storage compartments will be a life saver when you’re trying to make the space convenient for friends and also keep it tidy.

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When laying out a small space, use your wall space! This can be hard because walls may be taken up by windows or doors, but start with wall space when determining where to put your furniture. You’re not going to be able to float a seating area in the middle of the room anyway, so your walls will dictate a lot about how the room lays out. Be sure to use your corners too! A sectional that turns the corner adds a whole additional seat that two pieces of furniture perpendicular to each other would not.

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Be sure to add lots of light so that the room doesn’t feel like a cave. If you have great windows and they’re enough, awesome! If you don’t though, think about adding little wall-mount sconces or skinny and tall floor lamps that won’t take up a lot of surface area. Lighting is important! Don’t overlook it!


Finally, keep it fresh by adding greenery. Greenery always keeps a space cozy and inviting and also helps with air purification. Even the tiniest plant makes an impact!

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Bedrooms | Making Small Rooms Feel Bigger

Although this may be titled "bedrooms", the tips we'll be sharing can really apply to any small space so don't feel like the information is only for the bedroom.  Store it away in your "helpful info" for the house manual and use it whenever you're feeling cramped.

For starters, don't be afraid of dark colors.  We agree with the fact that lighter colors make spaces feel open and more breezy, instead of being stiff, however dark colors can work in small spaces too.  We're typically not a fan of the accent wall when it has to do with paint (wallpaper is a different story)....however, a small space is one area where this can work for you.  Since darker colors can make a space feel deeper, one wall in a darker shade can actually make the room feel longer.

Although we're big fans of a nice heavy, lined drape, small rooms really don't need any additional heaviness on the walls so going for something a little lighter is going to make the space feel more airy and open.  Sheers are absolutely a thing so don't feel like you can't use them on windows.  We love sheers in the right application too!  And a small room is one of them!

Have an obvious focal point.  In a bedroom, this would be the bed wall.  You may choose a nice upholstered headboard or maybe just some fun art above the bed, whatever it is, don't be scared to do something a little dramatic or different.  Since you don't want crazy pattern all over a small space, use your pattern-appropriate areas wisely and go for it!

So many people get caught up on the furniture and needing more of it, however, small spaces are limiting when it comes to how much furniture you can have before it feels crowded.  Don't be afraid to bring in less to make it feel like more.  For example, not every bed needs two bedside tables.  If you only have room for one, you only have room for one.  You can still make the bed wall feel balanced by placing a floor lamp on the other side or even a tall plant....just something to give the other side of the bed height.  Maybe your bed wall only has one window on it forcing the bed into a corner.  That's ok!  Center whatever art you put on that wall over the bed rather than making it centered on the wall.  This will create a little focal point and make the asymmetrical wall make a little more sense.

Taking less floor space and using more wall space is key in small spaces and scale matters!  Using big art in small spaces can make walls feel taller and wider, so don't be afraid to fill the walls with big art!  Also, consider your floor space--for example, if you're really strapped and hardly have room for much more than a bed, install sconces!  This creates your focal point and frees up some floor space while still allowing you some light!

We're not going to lie, small spaces can be a challenge, but they can also turn out to be lots of fun!  Hopefully these tips have helped you with some small space dilemmas you might be facing!