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How to Make Space in a Small Flat

June 25, 2015

London rent is high, super-duper high! And earning a decent wage in London can make little difference to your living situation. When the Beard and I were looking for a flat to rent together last year, our dream of a spacious one bedroom flat with a lovely garden quickly became a nightmare when we realised just how much that dream would cost us. And a garden? Ha! No chance. We realised we would have to downsize.

In the end we found a nice studio flat with a separate kitchen and a little balcony area, so it doesn’t feel like everything is crammed into one room. However it is still a small space, and although we love it and it certainly feels like home to us now, that’s only because we have spent the past year working out how to make it work for us. Living in a small space can cause issues, especially if there are two of you and you have a lot of stuff (which we somehow do despite moving in with nothing but our post-backpacking rucksacks). So whether your moving into a studio, a small one bed, a room in a shared house, or perhaps just need some space saving tips, here is how you can make space in your home:

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Use every Nook and Cranny
You’d be surprised at what you can fit into little nooks if you try. You may have an oddly shaped ceiling or a bizarre gap in the wall, but use it. I use the annoying triangle shaped corner of our kitchen to store all our cook books and booze, that way they are out the way, in fact depending where your standing in our kitchen you might not even see them. Slide books into weird gaps, store suitcases under the bed, use your imagination and try and place your belongings neatly but cleverly.

Chose Wall lamps instead of Free Standing
I love a good tall skinny lamp, but unfortunately in small flats free standing lamps take up valuable space. If you already have limited space putting more objects to manoeuvre around isn’t going to help, you run this risk of knocking it over (I’m speaking from experience). Instead go for wall lamps, they won’t take up any floor space, meaning more space for you to move around in, Try Lampcommerce they have the most amazing selection of wall lamps.

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Buy over-the-door racks
On the back of our flat door we have a rack that’s simply slides over the top of the door. On our rack we place all our coats, jackets and bags too. It frees up more wardrobe space for pretty clothes and shoes. A shoe rack can also come in handy, not just for space saving but it will stop you traipsing dirt into your home.

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Use boxes and tins to make your space neater
I got this crate from Home Bargains for just £2 and it’s perfect for putting all our condiments in. Our kitchen, like the rest of our flat, is small and has restricted storage spaces. Plates, pots and pans get the cupboard space, meaning all our spices and such were just left out on the worktop looking messy. But popping them all into this crate immediately gave our worktop more space and looked so much tidier.

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Take advantage of top shelf/cupboard space
If like me you have plenty of space above your cupboard then why not store stuff up there? I found that our cereal boxes didn’t really have a place in the kitchen and therefore would always be left out on the worktop where they looked out of place. By popping them on top of the cupboards they are out the way and neatly lined up. You could also put pots or pans that may be too big for your cupboard up there (just remember to clean the tops every now and then).

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Use non-screw hooks
For things like tea-towels we added these hooks to our walls. As we are renting we aren’t allowed to drill/screw anything onto our walls, but luckily these little hooks use a plastic back and are removable, meaning we can take them down and move them around without leaving a mark. These hooks also come in handy for holding jewellery, hanging up washing, hanging bathroom towels or even hanging art.

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Box up and Basket your Beauty Bits
If like me, you have somehow accumulated a billion Beauty products over the years, you will have also had to figure out a place to store them. Unfortunately just dumping them on your dresser not only looks messy but is very unorganised and will only increase your chances of having a ‘Where the *** is my moisturizer?’ moment. I got these cute baskets from Primark that look pretty regardless of how I throw my products into them, and it makes it easier to find whatever it is I’m looking for.

Upcycle by reusing Jars
I find empty sauce or jam jars come in handy for a lot of things. There is always something that looks messy and out of place just left lying on a worktop, such as my makeup brushes. They didn’t have a home until I washed out some jars and voila, cute little brush holder. (And I have one in my kitchen that is a straw dispenser!)

Unfortunately in a small space clutter is probably going to happen, but it’s all about making your clutter look neat, tidy (and pretty). Whether its boxes, baskets, hidden racks or jam jars, it’s about organising the chaos. I find that if my flat is cluttered and unorganised, then I myself become messy and unorganised, so it’s best for me to be surrounded by tidy space.

Do you have any space-saving tips? Or perhaps a space-saving question? I’d love to know in the comments below….

This post was brought to you by Lampcommerce, written by Tink Jayne. 

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