Scale in a Small Space

Here we are at the end of Small Spaces month, having seen some great examples of working with minimal area over the past four weeks. We've looked at how bright color, bold pattern and oversized art can affect the visual size of a room, and now I want to take a look at another design element we've touched on recently: scale.

Commonly held design wisdom says that the furniture in a room should be proportionate to the its size; in other words, big pieces for big spaces, and scaled-down versions for the more bijoux homes out there.

While using smaller furniture can help create flow by keeping the movement paths in a space open, it can also make you feel like you've just fallen down the rabbit hole and eaten Alice's shrinking cake.

Personally, I've always felt that a few well-chosen items of furniture, sized for comfort and practicality rather than scale, work better than several small ones. So long as they're not inhibiting movement, large pieces in a modestly-sized room can create a cozy, intimate feeling, and even make the space seem larger than it is.

But over to you — do you prefer to go large in a small space, or keep furniture in scale?

Large Furniture:
1. HGTV
2. House to Home
3. DecorPad
4. DigsDigs
5. apartmentlove

Small Furniture:
6. Better Homes and Gardens
7. Better Homes and Gardens
8. Martha Stewart
9. the handmadehome
10. Pottery Barn

(Images: as credited above)

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Eleanor is a interior designer and freelance writer, embroiled in a love affair with everything glamorous, retro or delicious. This expat Canadian calls London, UK home but escapes to Paris whenever humanly possible.

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