By: Shane Curran, CEO - Interact Group
The basic outcome of Interior Design is to create spaces that are functional. In so doing it considers the size, shape and purpose for which the design is ultimately expected to achieve. Designing a small space is not be an easy task, therefore, it takes much thought, to work within the restrictions on size and scale. It takes creativity to make space stand out, whilst ensuring the correct arrangement and usefulness of materials incorporated into the space.
Small spaces can range from bathrooms, dining spaces to living rooms and bedrooms depending on the function the space is intended to be used for. In designing small spaces, the following should be taken into consideration to maximize and ensure functionality.
Use the minimal approach
It is important when designing to consider restraint in the use of elements, furnishing, and layers. It is possible to incorporate everything the client needs in the space; however, they can still be used minimally whilst sticking to the style and design. Be precise about the exact purpose of the space and use only materials that are relevant for the space to prevent excessiveness and clumsiness. Ceiling and floor designs should typically be without many patterns and layers; simple but useful is key to making the most out of the space.
Use of colours
Since small spaces already have size restrictions, it is important that the outcome of the design would present an aesthetic appeal. One of the ways to do this is to use colours that stand out, it could be mono or a mix match. In the case of a mono colour palette, it should come out as striking and the colour selected should match the theme and functionality of the space. A mix match of colours should be blended properly to create a useful pattern. The use of too many colours must be avoided though, as moderation is key in designing small spaces.
Ensure there is proper ventilation
Whichever design technique is used must ensure that there is proper ventilation in the small space, even for outdoor spaces. Poorly ventilated areas would ultimately defeat the purpose of the design as it would negatively affect functionality and have gross health implications. Allocations should be made for entrances, air conditioning units any other ventilation that supports the quality of air in the space.
The use of correct lighting is properly used
Lighting is a critical element that should be used correctly. For small spaces, lighting should be positioned properly and in the right shades. The positioning of light, unless it is a natural source is very important and should be distributed evenly in the space to avoid discomfort for the end user. The concept of lighting in design is scientific; so, energy efficiency and ergonomics should be clearly considered in addition to aesthetic appeal that should be present at the end of the design process.
The proportion in Interior design describes the balance between the size and scale of the space in interacting with elements such as colour, shape and textures. Proportion is key in designing small spaces giving the size factor. It is therefore important to create the right arrangement to ensure that all elements used in the process are in sync with each other so that the message the design is intended to create is communicated immediately to the end user.
Overall, the aim is to achieve space functionality with the design. Therefore, all required elements and materials that are used in the design of small spaces should serve the purpose and be used with restraint.