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Maximizing Storage in a Small Space

As rent prices continue to rise, many of us are finding ourselves in smaller and smaller spaces. These small spaces, while easier on the bank account, are notoriously tough when it comes to storage. Now, the first thing that people will probably tell you is that maybe it’s time to donate some of your stuff in order to accommodate your small space. And while, yes, you can certainly do that, you can’t get rid of everything. 

Luckily, because of the tiny house movement, and the increase of people living in small spaces, there are lots of creative storage solutions available for you to choose from. 

General Tips

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One general tip that the tiny house movement has taught us is the importance of maximizing vertical space. It is perfectly fine to have storage cabinets that reach all the way to the ceiling. In fact, your space will look bigger this way. It will create cleaner lines, you can fit more stuff in them, and will ultimately make your space feel less full. 

You will also see a lot of tips from people recommending an abundance of open shelving and open storage solutions. This is actually not the best idea. Having a few open shelves or one open shelving unit to show off a few choice items can look lovely. But too much open shelving will lead to your space looking messy, no matter how much you clean up. Closed door storage is great. Let’s be honest, most of your stuff does not need to be on display. Closed storage makes your space look tidier and ultimately, bigger.

Maximize Wall Space

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The number one tip when creating storage in a small space is to maximize your wall storage. Hanging some floating shelves, putting a peg-board wall and adding hooks will allow you to pick things up off the floor and store them somewhere else. You only have so much floor space, and things will start to look very cluttered very fast if you aren’t deliberate about what goes on the floor. 

Large Storage Solutions

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Let’s talk about large storage. Some units don’t have closets, and this can, for very obvious reasons, be a problem. Take a look at your clothes and how best to store them. Some clothes can be folded and put into a drawer, and some cannot. Find an armoire that is the right size for your space and prioritize putting in it only the items that can’t be folded.

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If you live in a studio apartment, you may find that you want a room divider to create the illusion of a wall between your bedroom and the rest of the unit. A divider with cube storage such as the Kallax unit from IKEA is great for this. This is where you can put baskets for your clothes that can be folded, on top of whatever else you’d like to store or display.

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You may not think that you have enough space for a kitchen island but think again. A portable kitchen island will free up counter space so that you can actually cook and will add more storage so you can put more things away. Plus, there are kitchen islands that come with space to hide your seating fully underneath them, so you don’t have to sacrifice floor space.

Small Storage Solutions

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If you haven’t already, it’s time to invest in some baskets. Not only do they look great, but they are a must-have for putting your stuff away. You can even get basket risers so that you can stack your baskets on top of each other to maximize shelf space.

Multi-Purpose Furniture

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Last but not least, there are lots of multi-purpose furniture options available for people living in small spaces. Make the most of your under the bed storage. Anything that can be folded or hidden away, can go under your bed.

A couch with drawers in the front

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Maybe you’ll also want to consider getting a couch or ottoman with built-in storage inside of it. There are also lots of convertible desks available as well. When living in a small space, your furniture should be used for multiple things while still remaining functional.

Lily Frances | Staff Writer

Spring 2024

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