When you have a small room, you must orient the furniture toward the focal point. Most rooms have one: a window, a fireplace, built-in bookshelves, or a television, for example. If your room is lacking such a feature, create one. Then swing the furniture so the people seated on the sofa or resting on the bed face the focal point. You can do this by positioning the sofa parallel to the view out the window. Or, position the sofa perpendicular to it and add a chair to create an L shape with the seating. This gives people the option of facing the focal point directly or indirectly, depending on their preference. If the room is blessed with two features that could act as focal points, such as a fireplace as well as a television, you should pick one to be the main one.
In a small space, you have two furniture options: a few large pieces or more small pieces. In the first instance, opt for a comfy sectional plus a spacious upholstered ottoman as a coffee table. Keep it simple and don't add extra chairs that will clutter up the remaining floor space. For lighting, use floor lamps or wall sconces rather than squeezing in side tables for table lamps. In the second instance use small furniture pieces, such as a love seat and a pair of chairs; cluster them together as if cinched by an invisible lasso. This will create an intimate seating group. Add tables that are in scale with the upholstered pieces, such as a drum side table or a bench as a coffee table, and keep them from roaming off the range by anchoring all the pieces on a large area rug.
Rather than congest a room with extraneous storage pieces, such as magazine racks, a bar, side tables that hold electronics, a TV stand, or trunks for extra linens, work your way up the walls. This will keep the floor space open for traffic flow and foster a sense of airiness. Hang shelves or use a tall bookcase to hold electronics, books, art objects, even a home bar. You can store extra pillows or throw blankets in baskets on the shelves. Mount the television on the wall, as well, or combine the bookcase with an entertainment cabinet to house everything in one cohesive piece of furniture.
With seating positioned toward the focal point in the room and storage climbing the walls, it would be easy to overlook the corners of the room. But you can eke out extra function from these crannies, too. Use a corner to tuck in a bistro-size dining set or a small secretary to use as a home office. In a small bedroom, this can be where you tuck in a skirted vanity table. In a small dining room, the corner can hold spare chairs.
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