Avoid these common mistakes when setting up your space, whether it’s simply a closet or your entire apartment:
1. Not Having an Overall Plan. THINKING is the first step, not buying. You’d never see a contractor walking around a hardware store saying “Oh, this tool is cool. Not sure what it does, but I like it. These nails are on sale, I’ll buy three packs.” No! They have a plan of what they are building and a list of what they need to get it done: circular saw 4 3/8″ carbide tipped blade, 100ea 3″ metal screws, 45ea 2′ x 4”s….you get the drift….
2. Buying Without Measuring. I’m asked a lot by clients to help make pieces they just purchased ‘fit’ their space. Don’t put yourself in a situation that needs to be fixed. Measure first to make sure you’re getting something you know will be appropriate for the space.
3. Not Bringing Your Floor Plan and Measurements When Shopping. I get so many texts from clients when they’re out shopping asking if something will work for their space. If you’re shopping for furniture (even if it’s just bins or baskets), bring your floor plan and measurements with you on your phone or in a little notebook. Most people, myself included, cannot remember all the details. This includes bringing paint chips and fabric samples if applicable.
4. Buying Furniture Without Function in Mind. If you need storage, don’t buy something that can’t hold what you need it to. For instance, TV units. So many are huge yet don’t actually hold much. If you have a lot of games, dvds, etc, that you’d like hidden, don’t purchase an open style (as opposed to a cabinet with doors) that won’t be able to store it all AND leave all the cords exposed in the back leaving you with yet another problem to be fixed.
5. Taking Free or Inexpensive Pieces Without Making Sure They Fit the Space and Your Needs. My former neighbor was given a large sofa and king size bed for free when he moved into his tiny studio (similar to mine) and wondered why his space never worked. The sofa was awkward and the king size bed ate up most of his floor place inhibiting him from setting up the space to his liking. Sometimes trying to save money by taking pieces for free or on the cheap end up costing you the ability to set up the space to live the way you want to.