Make your own Drapes
Drapes are an important decorating accessory, and can add depth to a room while taking up very little space. Of course you can hang them on your windows, but you can also use them to cover unattractive walls, or to disguise storage shelves. Because you only need to sew some straight lines to hem the fabric and place the rod, they aren’t too difficult to make yourself. Measure the window or area you want to cover, and then look for a pattern at a fabric store. Consult with the salespeople regarding fabric that will work best for your project. Don’t be afraid to go with a color or pattern you love—even if the drapes are meant to cover up storage areas, what you’ll really get from them is the punch they add to the room.
Kitchen Pan Storage
You can increase your shelf space by hanging pots and pans on your kitchen wall. Attach several sturdy hooks to a narrow board, and hang the board on an empty kitchen wall near the ceiling. Then tie twine or leather bands of varying lengths through the holes on the end of each saucepan handle; connect the ends to make a loop for hanging each pan. Experiment with differing loop lengths on the hooks until you have your pans arranged in an eye-pleasing display. But remember to remove the loops when you use the pots for cooking.
You can put a skirt on any side table or end table and suddenly gain all the space underneath for storage. All you need to do is get a length of fabric that fits around the area you’re covering. Hem the raw edges, and then attach the fabric to the furniture with hook-and-loop tape. Voila! You have an attractive table as well as space to hide more unsightly storage items.
Fabric Covered Boxes
Of course you can’t throw drapes and skirts over everything you might need to store in your small space. Another trick is to use attractive storage boxes. They can look quite decorative stacked under a table or on a set of shelves, and no one needs to know what you’ve hidden inside. You can make your own fabric-covered boxes. Cut enough fabric to cover both the outside and the inside of the box, including the lid; make sure you leave about half an inch of overhang around the edges so you can fold them over. Fold the fabric into the box, and secure with spray-on glue.
Do-It-Yourself Bulletin Board
Buy some corkboard at an office supply store. Some folks are happy leaving it as it is—or, if you’d rather add some color, cover the corkboard with fabric and staple it in the back. Hang it on any wall that needs some finesse, and add your favorite photos. If you have a large wall that needs disguising, you can make a large bulletin board. Or, make several smaller ones and hang them side by side at even intervals.
Do-it-yourself projects aren’t just for large houses and big ideas. Just because your space may be on the small side doesn’t mean you can’t decorate it and make it yours. In fact, some of the best projects can help you make the most of a smaller space.
Amanda Davis is a medical writer comparing different masters of nursing online programs to find the right program for her.