I am so happy to have you here! We are in a 3 bedroom, 2 bath split level just outside of Chicago.On the books we are 1,196 square feet, but with out sub-level we are at about a livable 1250 sq feet for our family of five. This was originally intended to be our started home, but we’ve been in our cozy home just over 16 years now. It’s come along way as we navigate our family growing up, it certainly requires more space! I can tell you what seemed really roomy for us as a young couple with a few toddlers has become a great lesson in creative storage and making our space work for us. I have learned to use every nook and cranny!Over 16 years, this home has seen many changes. My style has evolved over time from a it hodge-podge to what I like to call creatively modern vintage boho cottage…hhmm… that might still be hodge-podge. 🙂
We updated our 12 x 11 kitchen a few years ago (see the dark oak cabinets before here.) and one thing I am very thankful for are the upper cabinets. I purposely did not add knobs to them so they were less intrusive, but they make great storage for the stuff I want to keep,but don’t use that often like extra platters and party items.
The other side of the kitchen we added a hutch. I find if I can see it, it stays more organized. Closed cabinets tend to get messy around here.The bottom is a great place for my baking and casseroles dishes.
The living room has always been tricky for me. It’s a very rectangular 11 x 17 and it makes furniture placement challenging at times. I have several ways to show you how we’ve had the furniture laid out in this post if you are looking for placement in a rectangular room.
The big buffet was my grandmothers, even though it takes up lots of room,it has to stay, but it makes great storage, so that’s an upside.
I also have storage under it in come vintage suitcases.
Last Fall, a friend came over and we played a little bit with the layout. I really liked it this way, it feels very fresh, but we did shuffle it around when the Christmas tree went up.
After the tree came down,I mixed it up a little more for a change. You can see how I refreshed it here.
One thing I have learned about living in a smaller home is your furniture placement need to be fluid, and able to adapt as your family changes by size or need.
The same couch placement that worked when they were in preschool may not work when your 6 foot high school freshman walks in the door.
The biggest thing I have found to make a smaller space work, is getting rid of the clutter and out of the box storage solutions. I am not super-organized, but I have a method here that helps me lot!
These old trunks in our downstairs family room not only make a cool side table, but they hold storage for things we don’t need asap that we can’t quite bear to part with (aka… our old CD collection.).
Even though this is from Christmas,we are huge readers and used the extra faux mantle as a bookshelf.
You can see how it’s perfectly tucked behind one of out sofas as hidden storage.
And I have lots of baskets. This one on the right is for all of our blankets and pillows we all snuggle up with at night when we are watching TV.
And besides baskets, I make use of extra dressers all over the house. This one next to our front door holds all of the mittens and hats in the winter and in the summer I swap it out for swimming stuff and flip-flops.
Thanks for stopping by! I was so glad to have you here.
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