Compact Living. Space saving ideas for smaller rooms.

Our homes are getting smaller. But you can turn one room into two with the clever use of furniture. Here are three easy ways to make your space more versatile.

Business and pleasure

More and more people are working from home – but few of us have a dedicated office room. However, you can still make space for a desk and computer without compromising your living area. Don’t let work completely dominate your shelving. A mix of pictures and candles and fresh flowers will stop your space from feeling too office-like. And a pleasant working environment will also boost your productivity.

Your desktop is valuable space- so look for one with a hidden drawer underneath, so that you can stow away your laptop and papers, and have extra surface space when you’re not working.

If you have a smaller room you need furniture that works extra hard. Look for built-in storage to cut down on clutter, such as a coffee table with shelving.


Clearly define the different areas of your room, keeping your office life to one key area. Make the most of wall space to provide extra storage. If you really want to separate work and home, add a screen.

Food and function

Dining rooms are the least-used room in any home, so it’s no surprise that we’re increasingly turning to open-plan living-dining spaces. The key is to define your layout.Separate your space so that you have clearly defined ‘living’ area and ‘dining’ section of the room. Make use of bay windows, or a recessed wall, to create a natural dining space.

Choose stackable chairs so that you can keep your table flush to the wall when you’re not using it. And you’ll always be ready if an extra guest arrives.


If you have a nook or recess in your room, take advantage of it to create a dining area. A sideboard as shown on the plan below will conceal your crockery, while still looking suitably ‘living room’.

Day to night

Whether it’s to put up an extra guest or have flexible studio-living, a sofa bed gives you two rooms for the price of one. Here’s how to make your live-sleep area feel comfortable at all times.Paint your walls a relaxing colour – you want the space to feel serene and calm. Add a mirror so that you or guests can fix ‘bed-hair’ in the morning.

A petite-but-stylish side table can work well as a coffee table in a small space, and a statement knitted pouffe provides handy extra seating.

A sofa bed instantly turns a living room into a bedroom, but keep your other furniture light and moveable. Plan in storage space to hide duvets and how to make your live-sleep area feel comfortable at all times. (see plan below)

A sideboard will make a great hideaway for storing bedding and pillows until they are needed.