If you happen to be moving into a smaller apartment or are in the process of building a much smaller house, finding the right vision of how you can do it well is, in a few words, a task. Besides the obvious fact that many pieces of large furniture just won't fit, it can help to catch some glimpses of how to re-imagine your living space when you've had to pare it down by a significant number of square feet. If you are new to reading books about interior design and feel you might be put off by fancy furnishings, don't worry. Terrance Conran's tiny volume, only 112 pages long, is written in plain English and designer vocabulary, with plenty of beautiful photographs of modern, uncluttered rooms and insightful bullets which invite you to consider your own possibilities.
You can trust this little guide because it is so practical and the design elements are so clean. You'll find yourself imagining a guest room with a raised platform bed with drawers built in underneath, planning to install pocket doors between rooms, or building recessed shelves in the bathroom to store your towels. Reading this book helped me get a sense of how I might organize our future home, how to understand the flow of a smaller kitchen and the way even a tiny nook can serve as a home office.
For more insights on decorating your small space, check out Undecorate ( 2010) by Christiane LeMeiux, who blogs at DwellStudio, and Shabby Chic Interiors ( 2009) by Rachel Ashwell.