Smaller homes do not have to mean compromising on functionality or look, particularly when it comes to your flooring. Apartment living, smaller homes and tight spaces when carefully considered can feel welcoming and more spacious than they are. Here are our 5 tips to maximise small spaces and make them work for you.


Flooring material

There are no firm rules here, but generally the smoother the surface, the larger the room will appear. This is not to say that carpet and rugs are out of the question, but hard flooring (such as timber, hybrid, laminate and vinyl) tends to create more reflection and not absorb light as much. If your heart is set on carpet, choose something with a lower pile and make a careful colour selection (see next!). The same goes for a rug too.


Hard flooring in bedroom

Audacity ‘Spotted Gum’

Flooring colour

Lighter colours generally make a room feel bigger than it is. Think lighter grey, beige, brown and muted colours for carpet and lighter stain timber or timber-look flooring. With this said, big and bright is not what everyone is looking for with their interior design scheme. If you’re seeking cosy and intimate, dark and rich colours will work a treat.


Hinterland ‘Rustic Oak Natural’

Rugs- yes or no?

Rugs are a floors best friend. They protect the flooring in high-traffic areas and add a layer of colour, pattern and texture where spaces need it most. If you’re wanting the room not to feel pokey, gravitate to styles that have a flatter pile and are an appropriate size. Having a rug “float” in a room tends to look out of place so while it may seem counterintuitive, go bigger. Anchor the rug under some or all of the furniture legs. Lighter colours and subtler pattern and texture will work too.


Studio Silver Rug wit AquaSmart Washed Oak flooring

Studio 324 ‘Silver Texture’

Floorboard size and direction

To maximise the illusion of space, lay the floorboards in the direction of the longest length so the eye follows this line. There are two schools of thought when it comes to the board width. In terms of scale, it makes sense to go for a narrower board- however- a wider board will have fewer lines, therefore less to “busy” the space. The best way to select board width is to be guided by style (but even here there are no firm rules). If your home is contemporary, a larger board will look fantastic. If you live in a smaller period home or apartment, narrower boards can look a treat.


FastFIT Mountain Messmate

FastFIT ‘Mountain Messmate’

Where flooring meets furniture

While the flooring is important to consider individually, also think about the flooring placed on top and how it will be positioned. For example, slightly elevated furniture, such as a sofa that has legs rather than a solid base to the floor, will give a lofty, airy feel. Furniture which is also created from materials that are translucent or slightly reflective is helpful too. Being able to see through, under or around the furniture impacts the perception of space and size- and it also means seeing more of that beautiful flooring underneath!


AquaSmart ‘Washed Oak’


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