Having downsized a couple of years ago, I have become a fan. But I have found there are a few things I've learned along the way to make a small space live large.
The first is the importance of glass. Glass coffee tables, end tables, and even dining tables maintain their usefulness without taking up visual space. And clean-up is really no more difficult than with wood. Just use glass cleaner instead of a traditional wood cleaner.
Lower profile furniture is available everywhere now. Look for slim arms, bench cushions on sofas (with a length of 72" rather than the more traditional 86" or larger), and chairs with a depth of 28"-32". All are still very comfortable without being space hogs. And if you would like a little more seat room, add an ottoman, which can double as additional seating for guests.
|This chair from Crate and Barrel is surprisingly comfortable.|
And finally, don't forgo lamps because of less room. Just get creative with your lighting like the swing arm lamps above. They're not just for bedrooms anymore! Or try floor lamps with narrow bases.
Bottom line: you don't have to give up comfort and style in a smaller space. You may need some creative storage solutions, but those can be stylish as wee. But that's a topic for another time.