5 Easy Decorating and Storage Tips for Small Spaces

by Dagmar Bleasdale on August 28, 2012

storage tips for small spaces, DagmarBleasdale.com

Since making the jump to America 19 years ago, I’ve moved many times. In Los Angeles, I first lived in two homes as a roommate, then in two tiny guest cottages, and in a small apartment.

When I met Don, I moved into the small guest house he lived in, before we moved to Westchester when Landon was six months old. There we lived in a condo for three months and then in a tiny upstairs apartment.

All of these places had one thing in common: not enough space!

But I have always been able to decorate and organize my small homes without having to spend a lot of money. I’ve used multi-functional furniture pieces in a way that create the illusion that we more space and found ways to create storage in the niftiest spaces because I don’tlike clutter.

Here are decorating and organizing tips that have helped me transform small spaces into cozy homes:

1. Create clever storage under the bed:

closet on wheels under bed, organizing, storageIkea sells sturdy, large paper boxes that are really inexpensive, and I always use them under our bed for extra storage. They are the next best thing after these wooden boxes on wheels. Come to think of it, these would be such an easy DIY project!

2. Organize with baskets:

I bought a coffee table like this from Ikea years ago, and six baskets, and they served as storage space for small items for years.

Ikea coffee table with baskets

3. Declutter with storage ottoman:

We are currently proud owners of four cheap storage ottoman from Target, and there will be more in our future. I just discovered this adorable one, but Target doesn’t seem to offer it anymore.

storage ottoman

In the living room, I have two under our coffee table to hide Landon’s toys, and when we have visitors, the ottoman turn into extra seating. I also put two ottoman under our half-round side table in the kitchen.

4. Create a DIY desk with two filing cabinets:

My desk was never this cute, but I still have the same filing cabinets from years ago when I turned them into a simple desk.

filing cabinet desk

5. Decorate with glass jars:

I use mason jars to hold nuts, cereal, cookies, leftovers, etc. — I just love the vintage look of them.

mason jarsYou don’t even have to buy mason jars: you could also simply upcycle glass jars instead of throwing them away to store small items or dry food.

glass jars with DIY painted lidsWe have so many plastic animals our son Landon doesn’t play with anymore, we could make tons of these glass jar containers for his room.

Do you have storage and decorating tips for small spaces? Please share them in a comment!

And if you like this post, please pin it. Thanks a bunch!

storage tips for small spaces, DagmarBleasdale.com

{Sources: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5}

{ 8 comments… read them below or add one }

Bree @ Twinkle in the Eye September 3, 2012 at 5:57 AM

Great ideas! Love those jars too :-)


Lisa Lynn September 2, 2012 at 4:53 PM

Super cute ideas! We have a smallish house right now, but will probably downsize in a few years…so it is always on my mind :)

Found you on Seasonal Celebration Sunday!


Chrissie at Me and My Munchkin August 31, 2012 at 12:32 AM

I love those jars they are just adorable!


Kylez...aka...Mrs.P August 30, 2012 at 10:17 PM

I love the idea of that desk, so cool. And I think I am definitely gonna have to get some storage ottomans, it’s getting tot he point where I really need something to store Mia’s toys in and that would be perfect and functional.


carolene brannam August 30, 2012 at 9:49 PM

I love the jars with the animals painted with solid bright colors…I know I will paint me some jars this weekend…

I am pretty clean, and enjoy on days just spending a whole day dusting and shinning my house…


Cassandra 'CJ' Wunsch August 30, 2012 at 9:30 PM

I wish I was able to do stuff like this. I have manic swings of cleaning and organisation… one day I’ll wake up and just go nuts. Everything goes away, floor vaccumed and mopped etc… then all motivation just collapses and I slowly regress back to 4-year-old-induced squallor.


Clare | C Squared W August 28, 2012 at 2:15 PM

This was a great post! I especially love the desk made with filing cabinets and the cute jars with animals :) Thanks for sharing these great ideas!


Jamie "ChatterBlossom" August 28, 2012 at 11:00 AM

I love all of these ideas! Especially the diy desk out of filing cabinets set into a closet!


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