Home & Style

7 Design Hacks to Make Your Tiny Apartment Feel Bigger

The hot-pink impression of Ronald Reagan is by Ohio painter Scott Hand. Design by Huntley & Co. Photo by Angie Seckinger.

1. “Striped rugs visually widen a room, and window treatments installed up to the ceiling create a soaring feeling.”

—Wendy Danziger, Danziger Design

2. “Small spaces need big style. Select two to three unique statement pieces—a favored childhood trunk, a vibrant rug from a trip to India, a vintage flea-market find—to help balance a room and make it stand out.”

—Danielle Gray, Gray Livin’

3. “Use a monochromatic palette. Consistent color makes a compact space feel complete and blurs the edges.”

—David Benton, Benton Architecture & Interiors

4. “Treat your walls and ceiling like extra square-footage. Hang swag lamps, plants, and shelving up your vertical space along with fold-up tables, a Murphy bed, and even bikes.”

—Teri Clar, Nafasi Interiors

5. “The trick in small spaces is being convertible. I like to use a drop-leaf console to display serveware. In the evening, pop the leaves up and you’re ready for dinner.”

—Tracy Morris, Tracy Morris Design

6. “Keep the overall furniture height on the shorter scale—nothing over 30 inches. There’s no need to create additional barriers

in small spaces by choosing tall and oversized furniture.”

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—Joe Ireland, J.D. Ireland Interior Architecture & Design

7. “Strategically placed mirrors will expand the room and add depth and light. When it comes to mirrors and art, don’t be afraid to go big.”

—Christine Philp, Palindrome Design

This article appears in the March 2017 issue of Washingtonian.

Assistant Editor

Hayley is an Associate Editor at Washingtonian Weddings. Previously she was the the Style Editor at The Local Palate, a Southern food culture magazine based out of Charleston, South Carolina. You can follow her on instagram @wandertaste.

Senior Editor

Marisa M. Kashino joined Washingtonian in 2009 as a staff writer, and became a senior editor in 2014. She oversees the magazine’s real estate and home design coverage, and writes long-form feature stories. She was a 2020 Livingston Award finalist for her two-part investigation into a possible wrongful conviction stemming from a murder in rural Virginia. Kashino lives in Northeast DC.

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