How Do I Arrange a Small Bedroom? 5 Tips

After living in a dorm room, or something similar, for a major part of my life, I’ve learned a thing or two along the way about arranging small spaces. The two main issues we’re usually concerned with are that we make the most of the space we’re given and that it looks good! After all my failed trials and successes, I’ve come up with five simple tips for you to consider when arranging your own small room.


1. Build Up!

When you don’t have much floor space, a useful option is to build up. For example, you can loft your bed, which creates space underneath for a couch, desk, kitchenette, makeshift closet or whatever else you need space for. To be honest, it’s not an incredibly simple “do it yourself” project but it can be done OR you can buy a prefab loft bed from Ikea, Amazon or even Target. It all depends on how handy and knowledgeable you (or your friends and family) are with construction. You can build your own or buy it!

jewelry frame

2. Maximize your Space with Creative Storage

Similar to building up, try to become conscious of how you can maximize your storage spaces. For example, you can use an ottoman with a lid as a place to store DVDs or game consoles as well as a place to rest your feet after a long day!

You can also set your dresser inside your closet, if it’s large enough. You can use half your closet space for hanging clothes and the other half for folded clothes. That will give you more space inside the main part of your bedroom so it doesn’t look too crowded. Nothing makes a room look cramped more than covering every inch of your wall space with furniture.

Another way to maximize your space is to create artwork as a storage spot. You can do this on a budget! Take an old picture frame (or pick one up at a thrift store). Take out the glass and paint it whichever accent color you like. Then staple in a little chicken wire, screen or lace as the background. This creates an earring holder that doubles as art for your wall.

book floating shelf

3. Use Shelving

When you don’t have much floor space, a useful option is to build some shelving. This doesn’t have to be a project that requires a handsaw and fine craftsmanship. If you happen to have those skills, great, but for the rest of us, it can be much simpler.

Take the popular “L-bracket” shelf. You can make a small shelf using an old book (or board) and an L-bracket. There are a ton of DIY tutorials online with simple instructions, or like anything else, you can buy it! Ikea has sweet, inexpensive shelves, some even priced under $10.

Also, if you want to use part of your bookcase (or under your lofted bed) as a “hidden” storage space, you can use a tension rod and material as a cover. Say, for example, you want to use the last two shelves of your bookcase to store dishes and laundry supplies. You can put a small tension rod at the top of the shelves you want to use and hang material to the bottom shelf. It will hide all your “unusual” items and also look trendy.

cluttered room

4. Minimize!

This may sound elementary but it’s foundational. When you don’t have much space, go through your things and get rid of the things you can live without! Minimize and reduce! Not only will you feel the freedom that comes with reducing your load but your small space will look less cluttered.

5. Try New Things! Keep Arranging Until You Get It Right

Finally, one of the most helpful and important tips to creating the perfectly arranged small space is to use trial and error. If you’re anything like me, you will NOT get it perfect the first time. I tried different projects and arrangements that failed miserably but those led to better and more creative ideas!

“If at first you don’t succeed… try, try, try again.”

Don’t worry about getting everything right the first time. Think of it as a puzzle or an adventure. You will get it eventually. And to be honest, I like rearranging every so often anyway. It keeps things fresh.

SO, those are the five main tips I have picked up over the years. I hope you find them helpful and inspirational as you begin to draw out your own creative ideas. Good luck!

Also, I would love to hear some of YOUR fun and creative space-saving ideas. What is your number 1 tip for arranging a small room?!

About the Author: Victoria is currently a grad student in Nebraska, working for Hire A Helper. She enjoys fishing, reading, road trips and anything creative!

(Photo credits:, Victoria Volkman, and


15 thoughts on “How Do I Arrange a Small Bedroom? 5 Tips

  1. I really enjoyed this blog. Great tips for college students, newly weds or young adults just starting.

  2. Great tips! I have a tiny kitchen so I use cute shelves, that were on sale at target, as spice racks. Also hanging mugs saves cabinet space. Finally…De-clutter monthly!

  3. Now this info is something that I could have used many years ago, given that I have lived in a tiny, dog house sized bungalow for the past 30 years. I will take this to heart and build book shelves and look for low and high stackable stoves, sort of like stovetops and ovens beneath. So I guess that is a ready made solution. Lofty bunks would be only for guests, not for creaky youthful me.

  4. Wow! I love these ideas! I want to try and down size for my tiny house!

  5. Fantastic blog, My workroom/office badly needs this advice. What great tips.

  6. I really enjoyed these great, creative tips. The thing I need to do is downsize after being married over 50 years, and now a widow. There are many ways I could use these tips even tho I have plenty room.

  7. Very useful suggestions. I’m a big believer in minimizing, or what I refer to as simplify.

  8. Great Ideas!! I’m a big fan of organizing so this fits right in 🙂

  9. Very universal for any room. Thanks for the ideas

  10. Great article! I have an earring holder similar to the one pictured. Love it!

  11. Great ideas… You can make ‘decluttering’ fun by having a bag for give away – maybe decide ahead of time how many items you must ‘let go’. Make it fun!!

  12. Wow! Great ideas for small spaces. Decluttering is essential! And don’t just throw it away–there are so many people out there that can use it, even if we can’t. Put it in a box/bag and drop it off at Good Will, the Salvation Army, etc. Recycle, Reduce, Reuse! It’s amazing how good it can make you feel about yourself and your world! BJ

    • Beth,
      Great reminder! Goodwill, Salvation Army, etc can usually use our old castaways. One man’s oldies are another man’s treasure 🙂

  13. Great tips!! Ikea is a great place for ideas and gadgets.

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