Guest Blog from Kara – Styling Small Spaces

Posted on Friday 26th February 2016


Kyal and Kara became the public’s favourite couple of The Block, then the Fans v Faves series and also caught the positive attention of the judges. Their down to earth nature made them crowd favourites and their skill and design flair has ensured some beautiful results. They also recently appeared in Channel 9’s Reno Rumble where again they were known for their beautiful quality of work. Kara describes her style as organic, natural, modern and classic Scandinavian.

A beautiful interior has nothing to do with the size of the space – it’s all about what you do with it. Clever decisions when styling and decorating your home can have a huge impact on how well the room feels and flows.

Whether styling at home, or for a Client, before I rush out and purchase homewares, I always like to have a general idea of how I want the space to look and feel. Collecting magazine clippings, starting a Pinterest page and doing a bit of research as to what is available ensures I don’t rush out and buy something I’m not happy with!

When choosing furniture for your home, the most important thing to consider initially is the scale of pieces within the space. Measure and draw up the floor plan of your room before you head to the shops. That way, when selecting your big-ticket items, you can be sure that each piece will suit.

One of the most common mistakes homeowners make when purchasing homewares, is purchasing a rug that is too small for your space. A well-sized rug will ground furniture and set the boundaries of the room. An undersized rug will draw the eye in and have the effect of making the space feel smaller! If you’re unsure, draw the room to scale, and then draw the rug in also. Your rug should sit underneath furniture to connect each piece. If you’re leaning towards white walls, inject colour and personality using rugs – Such as this Rangoli Rug from Freedom.

It’s no secret that a light, white colour palette will assist in creating the illusion of a larger, more open space. That’s not to say don’t use colour! I love the idea of injecting colour – whether it be on the floor with rugs, in styling with homewares, or via painted walls. I am however, not a fan of the one wall feature colour. If you’re looking to paint feature walls, consider painting at least two of the walls that connect. This will assist in drawing the eye out, as opposed to drawing the eye in to the one wall.


Here are a few colours I’m currently loving:

Look for opportunities around the home to utilize dead space. In the kitchen, overhead cupboards are a great way to increase functional storage, as well as a good opportunity to introduce another texture into your kitchen. Study nooks are also a great way to utilize a corner of the room that would otherwise be left bare. Desk by Mim Design Studio. Photo by Derek Swalwell.








In addition, look for ways to style using functional products. For example, freedom have a great range of storage baskets and tubs that are not only functional, but look great too, and there’s something for every look. Clear room in your linen cupboard by keeping throws and blankets rolled nicely in a storage basket next to your sofa.

When completing the finishing touches, greenery is a non-negotiable for me! Indoor plants, foliage or flowers assist in creating a fresh, ever-changing space. You don’t need to spend money on fresh flowers either! Native foliage also looks beautiful in vases – you can grab this straight from the garden (or a friends).

image by Luisa Brimble via Urban Outfitters

Most importantly, your home should be a reflection of you and things you love. I love styling with pieces that have a story, such as an old vase found at the markets on holidays. Mixing new and old pieces ensures your home has personality, and doesn’t begin to feel like a homewares showroom.

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