Whether you have a small home or have made the plunge and built a truly tiny house, you have likely realized finding great furniture can be a challenge. The big issue for little homes is finding furniture which is aesthetically pleasing and can successfully function in multiple roles.
Many people get one of those roles right and fail entirely in the other. This is a shame because a home that is functional and unattractive is almost as bad as one that is beautiful but makes daily tasks difficult. Even if you don’t have a lot of money to invest in the furniture of your dreams, you can take style inspiration from top furniture design manufacturers like Thomasville and then make something similar at a scale that is more suitable for your home.
The living room of most smaller homes, and especially truly tiny houses, must be multifunctional. It may be the home entertainment center, office, bedroom, and children’s playroom depending on the day and time. Because of the varied roles the room is expected to serve, it is necessary for each piece of furniture to be carefully considered and capable of functioning optimally for many different needs.
For example, when choosing a chair for a small home, you don’t want to select the first attractive and comfortable piece that catches your eye. It of course should be both, but it needs to be more. A chair that might be purchased for a larger living room only needs to be useful as a place to relax. But if it will also be part of an office at times, it should fit comfortably at the desk. If it will be in a playroom, the upholstery should be stain resistant and water repellant.
The accompanying ottoman cannot be simply a place to rest one’s feet at the end of a long day. It needs to be large enough to serve as a coffee table or have hidden storage where toys can be tucked away when play time is over. Ideally, it would be able to function as an ottoman, coffee table, and storage all-in-one.
The kitchen takes up a lot of real estate in most homes, but it doesn’t have to. You can dramatically reduce the amount of space used by switching from traditional cabinets to open shelving. This visually and physically opens the area and provides more functional storage space.
Appliances can also be purchased in apartment size or smaller that have many of the same amenities of their larger cousins. They are also available in energy saving models, which wasn’t always the case.
As for the furniture in the kitchen. You may have wanted a kitchen island and realized it would make the room feel too crowded. However, there are moveable islands that can be used as a taller extension of your counters that can be moved to a more convenient location when needed. This gives you the comfort of a kitchen island with a footprint that makes more sense for a smaller kitchen.
Many people don’t realize the many ways in which bedroom furniture can be selected to optimize the space. Beds are large pieces that typically take up more than half of the room. This is to be expected, but all that room doesn’t have to be wasted. Some manufacturers have created stunning units that have bookshelves as headboards or which feature drawers that provide additional storage underneath the bed frame.
Nightstands are another piece of furniture that can be completely impractical if they only take up space to hold a lamp or charge your cell phone. While simple tables are an option, it makes more sense to maximize the floor space they occupy by choosing a unit that has shelves or drawers which can be used for storage. If the room is big enough, you might even choose to have two small desks on either side of the bed to serve as his and her office space during the day.
Your closet can be outfitted with carefully designed units to triple the amount of storage they can accommodate. If you have a minimalist wardrobe to match your smaller home, you can use this for storing items which can’t be accommodated elsewhere such as holiday decorations, luggage, or other seasonal goods.
Practical furniture doesn’t have to be unattractive, overly expensive, or boring. With careful consideration, it is possible to have a gorgeous and highly functional home filled only with items that are beautiful and supremely useful.
About the author: Katherine Smith (Kat) is a San Diego based freelance writer who enjoys writing on a wide variety of fitness and entertainment topics. In her free time Kat enjoys the beach and playing volleyball with family and friends.