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Decorating

8 Easy Designer Hacks For Small Homes

Because interior designers know best when dealing with small spaces

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Photography: Ocs & Kurt Alvarez (Main Photos)

If you’re stumped for decorating and layout ideas for small homes, then you can count on an interior designer for ingenious but stylish solutions. Here are a few of their tips on how to work around tiny floor areas:

1. Put your furnishings on a diet


Furniture with slender legs and silhouettes are elegant choices for tight spaces. “I used small-scale pieces, but not too small that they seem insignificant,” says interior designer Joy Adriano of this condo unit.

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2. Use reflective surfaces


A small room benefits from being doubled visually by transparent and reflective surfaces, like this mirrored desk and crystal lamp in a condo unit designed by Kristine Neri Magturo.

3. Lay tiles on the diagonal


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Interior designer Eric Paras visually enlarges the floor area of his powder room by installing checkerboard tiles on the diagonal.

4. Opt for a light, neutral palette


“I used a neutral, monochromatic palette because we wanted the space to look airy and light,” says Joy Adriano of this living room she designed for the Sonata Residences.

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5. Or go deep and mono


A small room can also benefit from a darker or bolder color, when used in a monochromatic way, as seen in this refreshing Kelly green room in a condo designed by Tala Singson.

READ: Cool Colors And Custom Furniture Complete This 68sqm Condo Unit

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6. Go for a capsule-style layout


To save on floor area in this 40sqm condo unit, designers Misty Floro and Pai Edles went for a capsule-type bedroom layout, with two beds abutting each other, but divided with a fabric screen for privacy.

READ: We Want To Live In This Capsule Hotel-Inspired Condo Unit

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 7. Choose a ledge over a console


If limited floor space prohibits you from adding a console table to your entry foyer, install a wall-mounted ledge, instead, like how Grace Moslares added this slim ledge to the Hernandez home.

READ: A Play of Patterns and Light Colors in a Cavite Home

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8. Make a bold statement in a small balcony


A small balcony—even the smallest ones in most condos—shouldn’t be neglected. It can actually benefit from a dramatic touch, and in turn be transformed into an extra “room.”

This originally appeared as the article “8 Designer Solutions for Small Homes” in the August 2011 issue of Real Living magazine.

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