Design Inspo

The Most Common Apartment Layout Mistakes to Avoid

Regardless of the size of your space, its layout can make or break how your design feels and flows.

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Top things to know about apartment layout mistakes to avoid:

  • Make sure you have enough space between each of your furniture pieces.
  • Always consider your pathways when planning a room layout.
  • Make the most of the space by thinking creatively with your layout.
  • Choose a large enough rug to avoid the floating furniture look.
  • Remember to consider your lighting levels to draw the eye in.
  • Don't position your furniture too far from your focal point.
  • Use a layout tool to measure the space properly before you purchase anything.

When it comes to designing your apartment, or any space, making mistakes along the way can feel inevitable. The truth is, the design process is hardly ever linear, but taking a step back to evaluate, plan, and get some perspective can keep you from making mistakes too far into the process, especially when planning your apartment layout.

Regardless of the size of your space, its layout can make or break how your design feels and flows. While it may initially seem overwhelming, once you know the basics, avoiding the most common layout mistakes is simple. So, if you're stuck in the beginning stages of a process or standing in your space wondering why it doesn't feel quite right, here are a few of the most common apartment layout mistakes to avoid—and what to do instead!

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1. Crowding your furniture pieces.

Crowding your furniture pieces is one of the easiest mistakes when working on a design layout, but it's not just about having too much furniture or pieces too large! To ensure your furniture doesn't feel too crowded in your space, give it some room to breathe and allow for adequate space between the pieces and the walls. While it may seem counter-intuitive, something as simple as moving your sofa away from the wall can open up your space and make it feel larger.

2. Ignoring the flow of your space.

Overlooking the flow of your space is a common mistake to make when designing your room, but it can make a world of difference! Before you start, consider your furniture pathways and how the space will function. What is the natural way for people to enter the apartment and walk through various room points? Imagine walking from the sofa to the dining table and from the dining table to the bed. Allow at least a few feet in-between your major pieces or sections.

3. Not making the most of the space.

This one might seem obvious, but sometimes making the most of your square footage means thinking out of the box and re-evaluating how you want to live in your space. Do you spend more time reading than you do watching TV in your living room? Maybe you should consider prioritizing a reading area rather than the sofa-facing TV layout.

When in doubt, look to the corners of your rooms and evaluate how you can add more function. A chair, a side table, and a lamp can make an instant reading nook, while a small bar cart could turn an unused wall space into your newest party trick!

4. Picking the wrong size of rug.

The right rug can go a long way in visually dividing your space, especially if you live in a studio apartment or have an open-concept living space. Picking a large enough rug can make your space feel bigger and help distinguish the different areas of your apartment. As a general rule, ensuring all of the feet of your furniture pieces are on the rug will help you avoid that "furniture floating" look that can often throw a layout off or make your space feel smaller.

5. Forgetting the lighting.

Lighting can make a big difference in defining the layout of your apartment, especially in a small space. When planning your space's design, don't forget how natural and artificial light can visually and functionally create a more usable and appealing layout. Play with different lighting levels from the floor to the ceiling to the table to get an even cozier, rounded-out appeal.

cute and blue living room aesthetic
A good example of how lighting can work in your favor in this design by Leslie Kelly.

6. Positioning your furniture away from the main focal point.

Focal points draw the eye in and help balance your space visually; every space needs one! When designing a room and creating the layout, ensure you position your pieces to face the focal point and not away from it.

For example, if you have big windows with a view that you want to set off your space visually, orient your furniture towards the view rather than your tv or the wall. If you have multiple focal points or areas of interest, design your layout so that your seating faces both to encourage different ways of using your space.

7. Not planning or measuring the space properly.

Planning and measuring might not sound like the fun part of the design process, but once you have an idea of what you have to work with, you'd be surprised how much it can free you up creatively.

Using a layout tool that allows you to visualize everything from the scale of your furniture pieces to the final decor element on the coffee table can help you avoid common layout mistakes (and have fun while you're at it).

Photo Credit: (Left) The Nordroom

Want to visualize your own dream space, create room layouts, and see your ideas come together in real-time? Join Spoak today.


Date Posted
September 12, 2022
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