Small Space Living

Living in a small space? Here are some ideas to help you on your quest to finding room to paint

Finding room to paint is not easy, but as I have mentioned, I am the queen of living in small spaces. I don’t think I have lived in a large home or apartment my entire life. And currently, my husband and I live in a single wide trailer. It’s nice…and warm and toasty in the winter. But if you run a business inside your home, if you do a lot of crafts and don’t have the extra bedroom, or if you want to paint and need space to do it, it leaves a lot to be desired in most cases. 

There is little to none in the line of extra space in our case. All of the kitchen cabinets house cookware, dishes or canned goods. If there was extra space, let me tell you, I”d be using it.

But living in small spaces does not have to mean the end to your personal desires to be the artist you have always dreamed of being. It does not mean the end to buying that set of watercolors. No, not at all ! I have found spaces that you couldn’t believe and, although I now have a large space to paint (my old picture framing store re-purposed as an art studio) I’m still using them to this day.

I’m going to go over a few that might just work in your circumstance and even if they don’t, they might just jump start the ol’ brain to thinking outside the crayon box. So, let’s get started, ok?

Finding room to paint is about thinking outside the box. Here is a quick bullet list of possible available spaces in small apartments or small  homes

    • finding room to paint by hiding your art supplies under the sofa is another great ideaBehind the sofa. If your sofa sits cozy and comfy next to a wall, I bet dollars to donuts it sits at a slant. The space behind has a ton of room to work with. I know. Because my long flat plastic Wally World containers are stored there along with my watercolor paper, pencils and other assorted items. You will quickly learn that finding room to paint or storing your painting supplies does not always require big areas.
    • The storage coffee table. I’ve seen some amazing coffee tables. The ones that really caught my eye were the coffee tables that had room for storage. There are so many to choose from it’s just crazy. There are bound to be some that fit your décor and your style. You don’t have to do the minimalist coffee table style anymore…where it it’s just another piece of furniture to dust and bring the occasional house guest a cup of coffee. Make that puppy work for you….let it hold your art gear. One of my favorites was a cedar coffee table with drawer and….wait for it, shelves!
    • The Storage Ottoman. One of my favorite ottomans was a leather turtle. Yeah, I know, it doesn’t go withstore your art projects and supplies in an ottoman is another good way to find room to paint everyone’s décor. But I really, really liked it! However, there are ever so many to choose from that there is literally no end to the storage choices you have. You can relax, put your feet up AND store your art supplies when you’re done.
    • Under the Sofa or Recliner. Depending what your sofa or recliner is like,( I have a recliner and also a sofa that reclines) or how far back the foot rest recesses, believe it or not, there is a bit of space in there for at least a small plastic box that can hold watercolors, pencils, erasers and the like. When the footrest is back down and you are done for the day, the box goes back and is out of sight. Now this all depends on how much you enjoy crawling around on your knees….but hey, it’s extra space, right? And that is the all important consideration in small spaces.
    • The Top of your Kitchen Cabinets. My kitchen cabinets sit about 8 to 10 inches from the ceiling. I have the normal assorted kitchen cuties sitting on top of them. Just  a little somethin’ somethin’ extra to dust in the spring 🙂 But there is also a cabinet at the far end of the kitchen that is (or the money you are saving for Christmas!) Now, if you are tall, no problem. If you are ‘another me’ (read short), you will need a step ladder. But I repeat…extra space.
    • Bay Window Seat. I am throwing this one in but it just won’t work for everyone. Not everyone has a bay window. I do and am fortunate. And I love it. Talk about painting light! It also has space to build a hollowed out area underneath the platform that encases the window extending in to the home. As I said, this doesn’t work for everyone but if you are fortunate to have one, consider adding and utilizing this extra space. 

Now that you are doing mental gymnastics and your mind is bouncing with juicy ideas, start writing ’em down. Everyone’s home and living area is different. You probably have spaces I do not have and I have places you don’t. The point is, it’s about not letting things stop you from doing some of the things you love, or from the things you want to learn. 

So get crackin’ and look with a fresh new eye to where you want to store your art tools and supplies and where you want to paint. I bet you can’t wait to get started now, right?


I used to questions my worth as an artist. I used to wonder if I could consider myself an artist, If you have done the same, read on…

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