Small Space, Big Challenges?
Is designing a small space challenging? Sure, but it can also be very rewarding. A tiny house is the perfect space to indulge in fun styles and finishes that you may not have considered when renovating a larger or more formal space. Since your square footage is limited, maximizing the use of your space is critical.
For this home, the occupants will be overnight guests who are staying for a short time while traveling. Keep reading to find out how I solved several design challenges.
Originally as you can see below, the refrigerator blocked most of the view. Because the occupants will be travelers and not living there full time, a small apartment sized under counter refrigerator. Removing the large refrigerator opened up a lot of space.
The original design did not have a dishwasher. Although a dishwasher eliminates a possible cabinet, a traveler will not need to store items in the cabinets and there is still plenty of space for dishes or cookware that they may use. A dishwasher will help save time and keep the space tidy. The original cabinet configuration was extended to take up more of the longer part of the “L” shape which added more cabinet space.
The new cabinets are standard size cabinets from American Woodmark at Home Depot. This is not an expensive line. The quality is what I expected for the price. The sink cabinet is a base cabinet that was modified to accommodate the sink. I did not want any extra panels at the top of the cabinet and for the doors to remain full height.
The Living Room
The living room shape is a long rectangle. The original walls were painted a somewhat dark grey color and the living room was carpeted. The flooring for the kitchen and living room were different. By utilizing the same flooring throughout, the space appears larger and not chopped up. The new wall color was also a lot lighter. I went with Sherwin Williams Grecian Ivory SW7541 throughout the house except for the bathroom. The brick surround around the gas fireplace was also removed. There may have been a wood stove there at one time but with the current stove being gas, the bricks were not necessary and took up a lot of space. You can see this in the old before photos below.
The main problem with the bedroom was the bathroom. The only entrance to the bathroom was through the bedroom. With the room being very small to start with, there really is only 1 good location for a bed. Placing the bed against the same wall as the bathroom door created another barrier In order to get to the bathroom with the original door configuration, it would require walking around the bed completely to get to the door. This was awkward and inconvenient especially if guests in the bedrooms would have to be disturbed by others needing to use the bathroom. Closing off and relocating the bathroom entrance added space and privacy.
Click here for my post that goes more in depth about this bathroom remodel. The bathroom door relocation added its own challenges but the end result was worth it! I choose a barn style sliding door to increase the usable space in the small bathroom.