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Publication Date: 2015-04-14

Design Insights

6 Smart Solutions for Small Bedrooms

Stylish and efficient ways to maximize a small space.


1. Add Mirrors. In a Marin County, California, beach house designed by Erin Martin and homeowner Kim Dempster, closet mirrors in the master bedroom expand the sense of space. The CB2 platform bed is covered in vintage French linen.

2. Hang Your Headboard. In Kelly Giesen's Manhattan apartment, the Wolf Home headboard, hung on the wall to save space, is upholstered in a silver fabric from Gray Line Linen. Tiny crystals glint on a Michelle Hatch pillow. For extra shimmer, Giesen had John Mahoney's Kiku Komon wallpaper printed on silver Mylar. The chandelier is available through Kelly G Design.

3. Smart Storage. In a 400-square-foot Brooklyn apartment designed by Fitzhugh Karol and Lyndsay Caleo of The Brooklyn Home Company, Ikea's Brimnes bed has drawers underneath, for more storage.

4. Embrace the Coziness. In designer Moises Esquenazi's Los Angeles bungalow, the master bedroom is dark and cozy, with walls in Farrow & Ball Mahogany No. 36. Esquenazi designed the mohair velvet headboard; curtains are Donghia's Uma Black Print. Leather Saigon stools are from Bourgeouis Boheme. Moroccan rug from Mosaik. “I don't mind a bedroom that feels small, especially since its primary use is for sleeping. Why should it not be dark, moody or sensual?” he says.

5. Play with Scale. “Most people think, 'Oh my God, it's going to take up most of the space, and then the room is going to seem small,'' designer Kelly Delrose says of her Hamptons bedroom. “Take the converse of that: If you put something big in there, everybody walks in and immediately sees this big bed and says, 'Oh wow, this space is really big.' Your eye plays tricks on you. Trust me it totally works.” Ralph Lauren's RLX Bed in black anodized aluminum and carbon fiber CF1 chair in black leather give the master bedroom a sleek, modern look.

6. Create a Jewel Box. In David Kaihoi's 64-square-foot bedroom in Manhattan, he covered the walls in an eye-catching, hand-painted 18th-century Chinese wallpaper found at auction. “The idea was to create a jewel-box effect in the bedroom, with pattern to distract your senses from the tight quarters,' he says. 'I papered the wall in the spirit of a collage trying to make the most of a beautiful old thing. Call it a new take on a traditional application.”

Text by Sarah Yang

Click here to see more smart solutions for small bedrooms.


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