Guest Blog Post: Five Tips to Make Your Space Look Larger

In New York City, it’s all about working with what you’ve got, especially when it comes to our small living spaces. Part of my job as an organizer is to help clients make the most of their small spaces through organization, furniture layout, and storage pieces that can do double duty.

So this week, while I’m on the road working on a special project, I have a guest blog post from Betsy Helmuth, owner of Affordable Interior Design, a firm that gives clients of all income levels a beautiful space that reflects who they are. I love that Betsy is making interior design accessible and doing it with style.
Check out Betsy’s brilliant tips to make your small space look larger. Plus, a bonus tip from Urban Simplicity: Cut the clutter.

Five Tips to Make Your Space Look Larger

By Betsy Helmuth

I know small spaces:  I lived in a 250 square foot studio in the West Village, a 90 square foot apartment in Hell’s Kitchen, and a 30 square foot chambre de bonne in Paris – that’s right, 30 square feet!  I survived in these cramped quarters with these tips:

1. Get Air Under There
Select a sofa and chairs with exposed legs and open arms.  These open areas allow air to circulate and make the furniture feel less heavy.
2. Work the Wall Color 
Make the larger pieces the same color as the walls.  Bulky items like futons and armoires will blend and widen the room if they are the same hue as the wall paint.
3. Get Down with Diagonals
The longest line in any room is the diagonal.  So putting something at a slant will draw your eye to the longer distance. Additionally, you’ll get corner space for a lamp or plant.

4. Concentrate on Clear
Glass tables, acrylic chairs, and plexi pieces will allow light to pass through them, creating the appearance of less and lighter furniture.

5. Allow for Luxuries
Living in tiny place can feel anything but luxurious.  Splurge on a few things that make you and your guests feel you are somewhere grand.  Get great linens, tableware, or lamps.

For more tips form Betsy, check out her blog here, where she features her sales on her favorite home furnishings. And learn more about Betsy and Affordable Interior design at