Dwelling in tight spaces requires creativity to maximize square footage limitations. Southern Living recently focused on overlooked spaces and clever solutions

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Many people choose to live in tiny homes and compact apartments for lifestyle and economic reasons. However, dwelling in tight spaces requires creativity to maximize square footage limitations. Southern Living recently focused on overlooked spaces and clever solutions, including:

1. Instead of using a hutch or china cabinet for displaying dishes or knickknacks, organize necessities there: dry goods and non-perishables; home office supplies; everyday dishes, cups and bowls; linens.
2. Stack large books on the floor next to a sofa or bed to serve as a side table.
3. Define spaces with different sizes and shapes of rugs, especially if the home is a studio where bedroom and living room are combined.
4. Take advantage of nooks and crannies. Add floating shelves, hooks, baskets.
5. Choose furnishings with multiple functions: a daybed/sofa; an ottoman with internal storage that also serves as a coffee table.

A kitchen island or breakfast table doubles as a desk and can be used for food preparation if counter space is limited, offers decorist.com. One of the interior design site’s October ideas for studio spaces: “If you’re low on space, look up. You can easily increase visual space by drawing the eyes upward. Place curtain rods at the highest point possible, use tall bookshelves that reach the ceiling or hang art all the way up.”

Apartment Therapy in November suggested investing in a modular cabinet system with add-on stackable cubes and drawers. Retailers such as IKEA, The Container Store, Pottery Barn and Target have options. A modular, stackable unit doubles as a room partition for open floor plans.

Finally, bar carts are back. They serve as storage, a serving piece, a side table, a small bookcase and more.

Light-colored walls and ceilings, mirrors, streamlined cabinetry and minimal accessories are aesthetic tricks to making small spaces appear more spacious.