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5 Space-Saving Decor Tips From an L.A. Interior Designer

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You may be missing out on usable space in unexpected places

Small-space dwellers and tiny home lovers: You know Curbed has your back. We, too, think there's something to be said for living compactly (by necessity or by choice). If that sounds like you, we're here to bring you tips for how to get the most out of your limited square footage.

We talked to Los Angeles interior designer Kyle Schuneman, who recently unveiled a line of colorful apartment furniture—including sofas, beds, and chairs—with California modern furnishings company Apt 2B. Schuneman is also the co-author of The First Apartment Book: Cool Design for Small Spaces (256 pages, Potter Style, 2012). He gave us five easy tips for how to maximize the space you do have and feel like you're living luxuriously.

With inspiration from both Schuneman's recent work (and our favorite Instagrammers), below are five illustrated tips.

1. Stay on scale

"Don’t use miniature furniture to try to trick the eye—it doesn’t work. Choose your key large pieces (like sofas and beds) to feel comfortable, and scale back on the side tables and accent furniture so the room still feels comfortable to be in."

2. Maximize your square footage with clever furniture

Morning light. #AphroChic #brooklyn #home #homesweethome #homedecor #interiordesign #interior #interiors #goodmorning #livingroom #room

A photo posted by Jeanine Hays & Bryan Mason (@aphrochic) on

"Use a coffee table with a shelf underneath to double the surface area and bookcases that go all the way to the ceiling to get as many shelves as possible in the same footprint."

3. Don't forget about your walls

"If you don’t have a large footprint use wall shelves for your nightstands, display your collection as a gallery wall to free up surface space and use wall hooks in your entry way to free up having a console take up valuable space."

4. Create three-dimensional visual interest to make your space feel larger

Merry merry! Have fun today

A photo posted by Adam Pogue (@iamadampogue) on

"Use layered window treatments like curtains and shades to make the window recess and introduce other textures like a wood accent wall to make architectural interest."

5. Create a room within a room

"Push the bed or sofa against the wall and flank with tall cabinets. Use wallpaper on the back wall in between those cabinets and on the inside panels to create a cozy retreat from the rest of the room."

5 Small-Space Decorating Tips from Interior Designers [Curbed]

All Tiny Homes coverage [Curbed]