Making The Most Of A Small Space. Making The Most Of A Small Space is an art that can be learnt very easily, you just need to thing creatively and out the box! Living in a small home has taught me all about making the most of storage space as I don’t have the “luxury” of empty cupboards or shelves. Mind you I remember when I did have a large house with lots of storage space there never seemed to be enough and there certainly wasn’t anywhere that was empty!
Organizing your home is a big topic these days as life becomes more hectic we all want to have at least our homes as a calm retreat from the madness. It doesn’t take much, just a little thought and planning to achieve the bliss of an organized home. To help you here are my eight top tips for making the most of a small space. I can vouch for them because they are all used here at Red Robin Cottage.
1 Never put anything down put it away. I can still hear my mother saying this to me as a child, it was her mantra and not doubt worked very well in keeping the tide of toys and such under control with three children under the age of 5 in the house! When living in a small house you really can’t afford to be messy, there simply isn’t the room. If everything has a home close to where it is going to be used then the likelihood of it being put away rather than left on a chair, table or floor is less likely.
2 Make every item in your house earn it’s space. An example of this is I needed somewhere to sit to take off boots/shoes after walking Mr Jenkins my dog, I could have bought a chair, but instead bought a small square chest that doubles as a seat and also as the place where all dog leads, wipes, brushes and such are kept. If you don’t have a dog you have no idea how much “stuff” they need even if just the essential take up space.
3 If you having an alteration done to the house consider building in storage. Bring together everything that you want to store in that area of the house and sort it into size shape etc. Then plan the storage units to take account of your belongings rather than simply having a cupboard with shelves built without any thought of what is going to be stored in there.
4 Paperwork can take up a serious amount of space – ask yourself do you really need to keep all bills, receipts, tax inflammation etc or could it be scanned? I understand that the tax department will now accept scanned copies of documents, give them a call to make sure, but I am reliably told that they are quite happy to accept scans. If you have a big scanning session of your existing paperwork and then scan as paperwork comes in you’ll have gained quite a lot of space. If there is an option to have documents sent by email in scanned form then opt for that as it will save you time and space!
5 Ask yourself if you really do need equipment for sports you haven’t play in years, hobbies you no longer are interested in and “stuff” that was given to you by your favorite relative but that you actually dislike with a vengeance? The answer is no of course you don’t need to keep any of those things. Have a yard sale or sell them on EBay and make some money to put towards paying for custom built storage for thngs you do want and use.
6 I once went with a friend on a 2 week silent retreat, yes I know that’s hard to believe! We were given a talk each day by a Buddhist monk (I’ll write a post about him one day he had a great sense of humor and an understanding of human nature second to none!) and he talked about living intentionally, meaning that everything we did we should do in a mindful way. The example he gave was not bringing anything into your home unless it was necessary or beautiful and preferably both, but he also said that the one item in and one item out principle was a part of Buddhist philosophy. I think it makes sense especially if you are making the most of a small space or a large space come to that!
7 My present kitchen has cupboards up to the ceiling, but several homes I’ve lived in haven’t and it’s such a waste of space. Where you can take storage right up to the ceiling. You won’t have used up any more floor space, but will have gain a lot more storage. Walk round your home and think vertical and you will be surprised how much room there is that can be used for storage – think vertical.
8 Whilst I don’t want to encourage you to accumulate more “stuff” I do encourage you to invest in some good storage boxes. Ikea is a great place for this sort of thing, just as well the nearest store is a 6 hour round trip away or else I would be prowling round there all the time as they have some fantastic ideas. You’ll gain a lot more space if items are contained rather than spilling off shelves.
Making The Most Of A Small Space – Summary
I hope these eight top tips have inspired you to take control of your storage needs, having an organised home frees up time to do the things you love and is a lot less stressful. Your home should be a sanctuary, but if you are falling over belongings and can’t find what you need then it’s going to be anything but!
Good luck with making the most of your space whether you live in a tiny cottage like I do or a 6 bedroom mansion. Organize your home and you’ll be much happier for doing so.