Home and Lifestyle


Summer’s just around the corner and as the days grow longer and brighter, it’s imperative to make your living space as open, airy and breezy as possible. For many of us, though, that’s easier said than done.

As the cost of living in the UK escalates the amount of space that we have to call our own is growing increasingly sparse, especially for those of us who, by necessity, find ourselves living in busy, urban environments.

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The space you live in

Most of us spend a considerable amount of leisure time in the living room. It’s a sacred place where we go to unwind after the rigours of the working day, and it’s really important to refresh your living room for summer.

Sipping an ice cold drink while we read a book or listen to music are among the many humble yet infinitely satisfying pleasures that the summer has to offer and it’s important that we can do this without feeling oppressed by busy, clutter filled surroundings.

For those who have limited space, it may come as a surprise how easily you can create spaciousness without needing more actual space.

There are many ways to create a sense of spaciousness but here are some abiding principles:

  • Keep your walls bright and neutrally coloured.
  • Maximise your window-space by replacing heavy drapes or curtains with blinds of bifold.
  • Lay out your furniture according to your room’s layout.
  • De-clutter and remove anything you no longer need or want. You may need to be uncomfortably ruthless if you or your partner have a tendency to hoard.

Create zones

This might seem counter-intuitive, but dividing your space into separate zones can actually help you to maximise whatever space is available to you. Each zone should be associated with an activity (i.e. sleeping, eating, working, relaxing), which will subconsciously give a feeling of separate “rooms”.

Multi-task your furniture

That storage ottoman where you keep your bedding can easily be transformed by a bench with the addition of a throw and / or cushions. A comfy sofa can easily become a guest bed. Table nests and folding chairs and tables are a great way of having furniture on standby for entertaining guests without it impinging on your living space.

Try to fold out-of-use furniture and store it under the bed or behind the sofa so that it’s within easy reach yet still out of the way.

If you’re moving into a smaller space and are in the position of buying new furniture then it’s a good idea to buy big, but buy less. Having lots and lots of small pieces of furniture in your living space is a real false economy.

Mirrors are marvelous

For those with limited space then the strategic use of mirrors is an absolute must. Not only do they create an impression of depth and space, they also reflect light which will add enormously to an airy, spacious feeling.

Plants… the finishing touch!

What better way to brighten up your home and make it feel more open than inviting a bit of nature in? Houseplants expel oxygen so they literally make the space airier. They also create a sense of balance and serenity while using up very little space.

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