We Tested (and Rated) Small-Space Furniture and Decor from Some of Your Favorite Retailers — Here Are the Best for All of Your Needs

published Sep 18, 2023
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A living room with light wooden shelves and an orange couch with decorative pillows.

You might be familiar with our Personal Shopper series, in which we visit the showrooms of all your favorite home retailers to view their furniture and accessories in person. It’s our means of simplifying the online shopping process for you, and one of the most helpful features of each post is the categorization of products. Whether you’re looking for a coastal-style sofa, a rug that’ll stand up to heavy foot traffic, or a dining table that expands to fit anywhere from two to six people, you’ll be able to find it quickly within each post based on how we rated the pieces. Given our audience here at AT, you won’t be surprised to learn that the “Best for Small Spaces” category is one of the most common classifications in the series.

If you’re looking for a specific type of furnishing, however, we understand that you might not want to click through every Personal Shopper article (though you still should, just for fun) to find a chair or coffee table that’ll fit within your home’s tight confines. That’s where this list comes in handy! Below, you’ll find all of the best small space picks that I and other editors tested in person. Each one is sure to elevate your space without eating up excess square footage — a crucial combo for all small-space dwellers.

1 / 14
was $1699.00

Not only is the Nomad sofa Burrow's most compact couch, but it's also their most customizable one, with three armrest styles, reversible back cushions, six leg finishes, and five fabric colors — and that’s not even counting the leather and velvet options. Despite its smaller size, the Nomad can still seat up to three people comfortably. It marries a traditional silhouette with modern elements beautifully. Namely, you get a timeless design that's fit for everyday life, complete with a built-in USB charger.

2 / 14
Pottery Barn

The natural beauty of the Astoria bed's mango wood grain and hue gives it a casual, timeless look. But that classic style is paired with modern functionality, thanks to the smart headboard designed to clear clutter in smaller spaces without sacrificing style, not to mention the available underbed storage. This investment piece will look good in your home for years to come, and its built-in shelving eliminates the need for nightstands if you don't have enough space for them.

3 / 14
Urban Outfitters

If your studio apartment only has space for a loveseat or futon, you can introduce additional seating in the form of the Castella chair, a cozy, low-to-the-ground piece with a wide-waled corduroy fabric that feels like sitting on a sofa without the added bulk. As you can see, it doesn't have arms, but that only makes the chair that much more compact and modern-looking. It's not the most ideal pick for lounging, but the chair is good for seating an extra guest or making your living room look trendier.

4 / 14
Pottery Barn

Aside from the fact that it's partially made from recycled plastic bottles, this handwoven rug is cool because it has a slightly reflective surface (hence the name "Prism"). It comes in dark indigo and taupe, but if you want to make your bedroom or entryway feel larger and more open, we suggest going with the wheat or ivory shade. Also, because of its flat weave pattern, this floor covering is super easy to vacuum and will withstand heavy foot traffic.

5 / 14
West Elm

This plush, timeless sleeper sectional scored a 10 out of 10 on our multi-functionality scale thanks to its roomy storage chaise lounger, customizability, and full-sized pull-out. The fact that it's also super comfy doesn't hurt. Additionally, we found that all of its parts move seamlessly, and the lid of the chaise closes softly with or without the easy-pull tab. The sofa also scored highly on nappability; clearly, the Urban Sleeper's small size doesn't negatively impact its versatility.

6 / 14
Raymour & Flanigan
was $799.95

After viewing dozens of chairs and recliners in-store, we determined that the Carmine chair is Raymour and Flanigan's best model for smaller homes. Available in numerous upholstery colors online, the chair exhibits plenty of charm with its tufted seat back and downward-sloping arms. Overall, its design is versatile enough to blend in with both modern and traditional furniture, plus its upholstery is made of durable performance fabric.

7 / 14
Urban Outfitters

We have no doubt you've seen this super cute lamp all over the internet these past couple of years, but don't worry — the mushroom decor trend is showing no signs of slowing down. In addition to being very current, the Ansel table lamp can also go on just about any tiny surface, be it your nightstand, bookshelf, or window sill. It emits a warm, cozy glow instead of harsh light and comes in five colorful finishes.

8 / 14
West Elm

The Jules table's drop-leaf construction means it can go from being round to having a rectangular shape in seconds. It's the ideal piece to place in your breakfast nook, as it seats up to four and embodies Scandi-chic coziness. The table's wooden surface paired with metal legs lends a slightly industrial appearance that's also wholly modern. Another upside of small pieces? You pay less! Case in point: the Jules table's under-$700 price tag.

9 / 14
Urban Outfitters
was $1299.00

Despite its name, the Aria model is more comparable to a loveseat than a sofa, but if you don't have the most spacious living room, you might just prefer that. It seats two comfortably, but what the piece lacks in size, it makes up for with its 1960s-inspired curves and performance fabric, which is easy to clean and long-lasting. We also found it to be surprisingly soft and comfy, so although it's a statement-maker, the Aria sofa is still practical.

10 / 14
was $549.00

Whether you want an elegant accent piece for your reading corner or a seat to accompany your vanity, there are few better options than the Pica chair. It's tiny in the most adorable way, but its striking curves and velvet (or bouclé) fabric make the chair impossible to ignore. What's more, the chair's high, rounded backrest provides plenty of support, while its plush seat sinks in just the right amount without making you feel like you're being swallowed up.

11 / 14
Raymour & Flanigan
was $799.95

Raymour and Flanigan's best-selling Alphie sofa was deemed our top living room pick for small spaces after visiting their store, and it's not hard to see why. It's just under 85" wide, not to mention clean in terms of both color and silhouette. As a result, this couch is perfect for those who like to mix and match new decor pieces frequently, as well as first-time apartment renters looking for a grown-up sofa with a small footprint.

12 / 14
Pottery Barn

A super shaggy, high-pile rug can make a room feel insulated, which might not be your desired effect if you're looking to open a space up. But Pottery Barn's microplush shag rug allows you to achieve that cozy sensibility without having to adorn your space with fibers that are excessively long and fluffy. Plus, it's actually resistant to staining and 100 percent nonslip, meaning the rug is much more functional compared to a lot of others in its category.

13 / 14
West Elm
was $699.00

There's no need to buy a sideboard or hutch when you own this industrial pop-up coffee table. As you can see, its surface lifts up to reveal a broad expanse of space underneath, which lets you store streaming devices, books, and other items within easy reach. Despite its roomy design, the table remains small enough to fit in tinier living rooms, and it looks oh-so-stylish with its mixed-material design. And thanks to its lift-top, you can eat and work comfortably from the comfort of your couch. No dining room or home office? No problem.

14 / 14
Pottery Barn
was $1999.00

The Carmel sofa is the definition of a clean-line wonder; plus, it's available in six different widths! At its smallest, the Carmel measures just 62" wide and looks more like an oversized armchair than a full-sized sofa. You can also confidently opt for the next two sizes up without fear of the sofa not fitting in your living room. Adding striking architectural flair, the couch's square base is topped with four plush, down-blend cushions designed for the most indulgent lounging imaginable.