Unlike Hong Kong and Singapore residents, Filipinos are not used to living in 30 sqm. quarters. Many families maintain expansive lands in provinces handed down from their ancestors. Even in key cities, Filipinos are used to 2 to 3 bedroom houses in villages and subdivisions. But the perception on accommodation is changing with the congestion in urban areas and rising real estate prices.
Can you live comfortably in a small home? Definitely. The key is in choosing the right colors, patterns, and décor. You can go for pastel palettes for an airy bedroom. Instead of a bulky bed, you can opt for foldable mattresses such as Uratex's Comfort Cloud. No space for a living room set? Choose the Strata Quilted Sofabed.
Living in a mini home doesn't need to be restricting. Here are 7 ideas to make a small room look bigger.
Dark or light color palette?
Interior designers are divided on the right colors for small spaces. Some say that dark shades can make a room look compact while others claim that color choices don't really matter. “Embrace small spaces and make them feel like jewel boxes – don't be afraid of dark or bright colors,” interior designer Jonathan Adler told Country Living.
An idea for you is to match colors with the emotions that you want to trigger in each room. Coastal palettes that remind of laidback seashores is perfect for your bedroom. Blue has calming effects, helping you sleep better anytime of the day/night. The Comfort Cloud, a premium foldable mattress by Uratex, saves space and ensures a restful sleep.
The magical effects of mirrors
Do you know a mirror can make your tight room look spacious? These functional home essentials can expand walls and maximize the reach of light in limited spaces. You can mount a floor-to-ceiling mirror, place it behind a lamp or put it on a shelf to break visual clutter.
Here's a tip: display a large mirror behind the Strata Quilted Sofabed. The mirror and the sofabed should have the same width to make the latter more prominent. The Uratex furniture has a compact design that suits a studio home. Plus, the teal shade of Strata Quilted Sofabed makes it a charming focal point of any space.
Get creative with storage
Clutter can make any room, regardless of size, cramped and bulky. Home builders and interior designers are coming up with novel ways to add storage in small houses. You can browse Pinterest for amazing ideas. You can also place hidden chests under staircases, floors, and furniture. Probably the easiest trick is to mount floating shelves on your walls for books and décor.
Find inspiration from a small house in Austin in which the home owners maximized their space with floor-to-ceiling shelves accessible by a rolling ladder. Paint your walls with a light green palette and the shelving with a darker green shade.
An intimate floor-lounging room
Living in a mini home doesn't mean that you can't have guests anymore. On the contrary, a tiny space can make socializing with your friends even more intimate. Transform your 10 sqm living room into an inviting area with floor-lounging décor.
Consider installing wood flooring, which exudes warmth, or as an alternative, a rich-material carpeting. Throw in large pillows as floor cushions. You can also add stylish ottomans and low stools for extra seating. Give your room a chic Bohemian look by choosing vibrant-colored pillow cases and always keep a Uratex Fold-A-Mattress with waterproof underlining handy for movie nights with friends.
Space-saving furniture for tight homes
Multifunctional furniture have been making headlines in recent years with the popularity of micro homes. Some of the in-demand pieces include convertible chair beds or sofabeds, coffee tables with magazine or book shelves, and mirrors that house spacious shelves.
You can visit shops or commission a furniture maker to build space-saving furniture that suit your home. Check out samples of a wall-mounted ironing board or a dining table that can be extended or folded down. Consider the Uratex Cool Zen, which is a modern take on the traditional banig (straw mat). This foldable mattress made of breathable material is lightweight and compact perfect for small spaces.
Have a balcony garden and/or reading area
Many condo units in the Philippines include a balcony. You might be paying a bit more for it, but you'll not regretting having this extra space. You can turn your balcony into a mini garden and/or a reading area. Install a vertical garden on one wall in which you can plant low-maintenance plants such as aloe, pothos, spider plant, and a variety of orchids. You can also opt for hanging terracotta pots.
You can buy a small coffee table and a chair from an antique shop. Bring out your teapot and a interesting set of books. You may also lay a Siesta Mattress on the floor together with Senso Aire Pillows and a comfy blanket for an open-air afternoon nap.
Discard stuff that only clutter your life
A smaller house has a lot of benefits. It's less costly than renting and maintaining an expansive home. A smaller space requires lower energy usage. This type of accommodation can also change your perception about owning stuff. The smaller space you have, the lesser chances for your hoarding on items that can only add clutter. Marie Kondo, author of the best-selling “The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up: The Japanese Art of Decluttering and Organizing,” advises people to reassess their lifestyle through the things that own. “Keep only things that speak to your heart. Then take the plunge and discard all the rest. By doing this, you can reset your life and embark on a new lifestyle,” she says.
The world is witnessing the rise of small living spaces. The boom in micro homes is primarily due to the mass migration of people from rural to urban areas. There's also a craze on everything pocket-sized, making small houses trendy. Live comfortably in a small home with techniques from builders, interior designers, and decluttering gurus.