how to make the most of your small space

i’m excited to tell you guys about a partnership that i’m doing with Apartment Guide. whether you’re living, looking or moving, Apartment Guide offers tips on how to decorate your apartment and make the most of your space on the Apartment Guide blog. they contacted me and asked if i’d be willing to share some tips about apartment living and making the most of a small space. below are 5 tips to help you use the space that you have, no matter the size.

1. use furniture with compartments
i’m a huge sucker for compartmentalized furniture. in fact, i have 4 different pieces with compartments in my apartment at this moment. what i love about them is that they serve their purpose (for me, a desk, bedside table, and dining room storage), but also can be decorative. functional and pretty? yes, please.

Ikea Expedit Desk, Ikea Expedit Bedside Table, Target Organizers 1 and 2 

[for more information on this topic, read this article]
2. repurpose
i’m a firm believer that furniture doesn’t need to only be used for the purpose it was designed for. in fact, i think that people should intentionally try to use furniture for different purposes. for example, a bookshelf doesn’t have to just hold books:

Ikea Laiva Bookshelf

[for more information on this topic, read this article]
3. use decorative storage 
i love baskets. there, i said it. i use storage baskets in just about every room in my apartment, which you can see in the photos above. if you’re lacking in closets and closed-off storage space, go out and buy some wooden or metal baskets to put your things in. they’re prettier than having a stack of random knick-knacks somewhere and they’re super functional.

4. get creative with your closet
for me, small closet spaces are the hardest to work with. i only have a small dresser from Ikea for my clothes, so space to hang and stack my clothes in my closet is key. hanging organizers, like this, are a great way to make the most out of a small closet. also, storage boxes or shoe boxes can be handy for holding socks, tights, or other small things in your closet
[for more information on this topic, read this article]

5. think outside the box for kitchen storage
i don’t know about you, but no matter how big my kitchen is, there’s never enough storage. when i first moved into the apartment i’m living in now, i was so excited about the kitchen because it was about double the size of my last one. but, once i started unpacking all of my dishes and other kitchen utensils, i quickly realized that i was going to have to get creative if i wanted to fit everything in. things like a hanging mug organizer can free-up cabinet space for other things that you don’t want seen:

this mug organizer is great because it’s both decorative and functional, and was the perfect “filler” for an otherwise empty wall in my kitchen.
so, there you have it. my 5 tips to making the most out of your small space! If you’re ready for a whole new space or looking to move,
Apartment Guide has the photos, floor plans, features and tips to help you settle into your new
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Disclosure Statement:

Apartment Guide and owner Consumer Source, Inc. partner with
bloggers such as me to participate in blogger programs.  As part of that
program, I received compensation.  They did not tell me what to purchase
or what to say about any products and believe that consumers and bloggers are
free to form their own opinions and share them in their own words. Consumer
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Leave a Comment


  1. Great post! So functional and stylish. Truly inspiring. Magnificent. In awe. I should hire you to do my room. Oh, wait….

    Posted 9.23.12 Reply
  2. Anonymous wrote:

    thank you for posting this! These are great ideas and very practical too!


    Posted 9.23.12 Reply
  3. Erin wrote:

    Great post, I love you bedside area! So cute.

    Posted 9.23.12 Reply
  4. sophie wrote:

    great tips! i don't live in an apartment, but i'm going to put some of these tips to use in my home.

    Posted 9.23.12 Reply
  5. Anonymous wrote:

    Great post Lauren!

    Posted 9.23.12 Reply
  6. Anonymous wrote:

    Just out of curiosity why do you chose to spell gray as grey? That is the common U.K. spelling, or when it is used in a proper name. Grey is not technically incorrect and I don't mean to patronize, this is just something I wondered about. Your sister uses the common"e" also. Apparently this is questioned a lot because there is a whole website dedicated to it. You and your blog are adorable. Seriously 🙂
    Allegra from Boston

    Posted 9.23.12 Reply
    • Lauren wrote:

      I just like the way it looks better! Thanks!

      Posted 9.23.12 Reply
    • Claire wrote:

      Love all your ideas and the pics! You have a lovely home.

      I couldn't find the comment box so I just commented here. 🙂

      Posted 9.24.12 Reply
    • Bethany wrote:

      Love it when people spell grey with an e!!!!

      Posted 9.25.12 Reply
  7. Anonymous wrote:

    Can't argue with that 🙂

    Posted 9.23.12 Reply
  8. Allison wrote:

    Awesome! this will help with the move. Thanks!! 🙂

    Posted 9.23.12 Reply
  9. Jennifer wrote:

    Awesome tips! I use the hanging shoe organizers both the small slender one and the bigger ones for camis and tanks and then the bigger one for my shorts, this really cuts down on space in my closet and I can see them without rearranging a drawer 🙂

    Posted 9.23.12 Reply
  10. Love this, Lauren!

    P.S. Hope you had fun at Becoming yesterday!

    Posted 9.24.12 Reply
  11. bonnieshee wrote:

    Is that Water for Elephants on your bookshelf? Love!

    Posted 9.24.12 Reply
  12. Tarabelle wrote:

    Congrats on your partnership with the Apartment Guide! So cool!


    Posted 9.24.12 Reply
  13. eowens wrote:

    I can't seem to connect to the links regarding the articles you said, "for more information on this topic." They don't appear to be live links. Anyone else having this issue?

    Posted 9.24.12 Reply
  14. Great tips! 🙂

    Posted 9.25.12 Reply
  15. My family and I have moved beyond the "small space" stage, but I brought up apartment living recently when we were discussing making some changes to our home. We have five people living in a four bedroom home, and my husband also works from home. Our home is plenty big (although not huge, by any means), but five people can really occupy a space! So I told my husband we needed to think back to our single, apartment days and use space much more wisely. Mastering small spaces is a skill that can be used over and over, and we are definitely re-evaluating bookshelves and other storage ideas to make the most of our not-so-small – but sometimes crowded – space.

    Posted 9.26.12 Reply
  16. Anna wrote:

    Where did you find your hanging mug organizer?? 🙂 It's amazing!! and I would love something like that for my condo!!

    Thanks! Love your blog! 🙂 🙂 🙂

    Posted 10.7.12 Reply
  17. You have arranged your home very well and you have used even a small space for a good purpose. However it appears remarkable.

    Posted 11.9.12 Reply
  18. Ashtin wrote:

    Where did you get your mug organizer, I've been searching everywhere for something like that!

    Posted 11.30.12 Reply
    • Lauren wrote:

      it's from pottery barn!

      Posted 11.30.12 Reply
  19. Cindy wrote:

    HI Lauren – first of all, I loved this post! Second, do you remember where you got the ampersand displayed on your bookshelf? I decided I wanted one and now I can't find them anywhere! Thanks!

    Posted 12.5.12 Reply

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