Home visit: awkward small-space bedroom makeover
Not every room is the perfect square – you might have doorways, alcoves or awkward built-in features to work around. See some big ideas for this small-space bedroom makeover…
Before and after: The small bedroom Olly and Sophie share gave stylist Ashlyn a few storage challenges. ‘The bed was my starting point,’ says Ashlyn. ‘I swapped the old one for a MALM ottoman – the base lifts up to reveal a double-bed-sized area of hidden storage!’
Design storage for narrow spaces ‘It’s a tight squeeze in the alcove behind the door, so a wardrobe with doors that swing open wasn’t practical. Instead, I took inspiration from the hanging rail the couple already had and added an open storage system with space to hang clothes, drawers and a high shelf to store rarely used items,’ says Ashlyn.
Embrace built-in features Instead of ignoring the fireplace, Ashlyn worked with its vintage look and turned it into a focal point. Using the ledge as a display shelf, she added a few minimal decorations to create a statement without making the area feel cluttered.
Combine three functions into one This multipurpose mirror has a trio of tricks: a well-placed mirror helps make a tiny room feel more spacious, the hanging pegs and shelf create space to store and display, and a bright feature colour brings a plain wall to life.
Choose furniture that changes with your needs
A wardrobe that’s flexible and modular can adapt to your space over time. ‘I replaced a bulky chest of drawers with another open wardrobe system, just for Sophie’s clothes. It’s easy to extend by adding another unit, so it can grow with you, even if you move from home to home,’ says Ashlyn.
Hang a personal photo display Create a gallery wall using mix-and-match photo frames – paint them the same colour as your walls to make the photos inside stand out. ‘So many people have family photos stowed away that they tend to forget about – I love digging out mementos that should be put on display and celebrated,’ says Ashlyn.
A stylist’s tips for a creating a sense of space and adding character to your bedroom
‘Personalise your solutions – Sophie and Olly struggled with a lack of floorspace, so solving that became a priority. Think about adapting your furniture to free up space. Everything from wall-mounted lighting to more storage inside the bedside cabinet addresses this,’ says Ashlyn. As a stylist, you become a storyteller. It’s about looking at people’s collections or mementos and threading them together so the space has got a narrative – that’s what makes it feel unique. Which objects tell your story? And colour really pulls a makeover together. A small bedroom doesn’t always need an all-white colour palette to make it feel bigger – brights against a dark base is a great combination.’
We love to see our customers get creative with our products. Go for it! But please note that altering or modifying IKEA products so they can no longer be re-sold or used for their original purpose, means the IKEA commercial guarantees and your right to return the products will be lost.
Interior stylist: Ashlyn Gibson
Photographer: Benjamin Edwards