Blessed with only enough room for a twin bed? Trying to make a double work for two while you save up for that California king? Buying a bed that's properly in proportion to your space (or your budget) means you're usually left wishing there was a little more room to spread out at night.
Not all of these strategies will work for your life, and some of them only give you extra space visually. But when you're desperate for a few extra inches of sleeping space, it just might help you get through the night.
Go monochromatic with linens.
It's fun to get punchy with patterns, but to visually maximize the size of your bed, stick to an array of solid colors in the same color family; whites with other light colors give the biggest boost.
Be a minimalist with pillows and throws.
Most people sleep with too many pillows beneath their heads at night. Figure out what you really need on the bed, then stash the rest of it in a storage bin. The exception? A neatly folded plush comforter can actually make your bed look bigger.
Grab a headboard (or a big piece of art).
A headboard does more than keep you from losing pillows. It visually frames your bed, making the whole thing look more substantial in both big and small rooms. In lieu of a headboard, a large-scale piece of art (just smaller than the width of your bed) hung above can work in the same way and make the bed a focal point in the room.
Add a bench to the end.
A well-proportioned bench can actually elongate a bed for taller folks or pets who like to sleep at your feet. It's tempting to snag a storage bench for the extra space, but if you've got a small room to start with, a bench with lean legs won't take up more visual real estate.
Kick pets (or kids) out of bed.
My tiny dog manages to take up as much room in our queen bed as either one of his human companions. I'm thinking it might be time to wean him off of sleeping with us so we can reclaim our space.
Save the bed for sleeping.
Stop watching TV or surfing the web in the bedroom. Treat your boudoir as the sanctuary that it is and you might find your small bed seems that much more calm and inviting at the end of a long day.
(Image credits: Justice Darragh; Bethany Nauert)