11 Fun Ideas for Decorating a One-Bedroom Senior Apartment

Moving to a smaller space is an opportunity to rethink your day-to-day decorating habits. In fact, downsizing offers new residents the opportunity to rightsize for a space that suits them perfectly.

It turns out that there’s a lot you can do to make your new home comfortable! You might feel that options for customizing your personal area would be limited in a smaller senior living space, but the truth is that you can spruce up your new home with just a handful of clever design techniques to make the most of a downsized space. 

Here are 11 senior apartment decorating ideas for a smaller space that will help you create a cozy and welcoming home. 


Senior Living Decorating Ideas: A List

  1. Let the Light In
    Remember to open your blinds regularly. Bringing sunlight into a smaller space can make a room’s dimensions feel larger. If your blinds are a dark color, replace them with a lighter color to draw in natural light. Natural light is critical for senior wellness, offering vitamin D and improving mood. It’s also nature’s way of keeping our bodily clock on a healthy sleep schedule.
  2. Use Splashes of Color
    Following what we learned about using light, use color accents to bring the outside in and make it feel like home. It may seem obvious, but with pillows, furniture, and rugs in warm colors, you can create a warm feeling. More inviting apartments make life in a community even more bright and lively. Experiment with what color can do for your downsized space by playing with shades and neutral, earthy tones to make rooms feel more grounded, or you can take inspiration from the Pantone Color of the Year for 2022, Very Peri, a cool and calming purple. Whatever atmosphere you’re going for, using color as a starting point can be a fun way to explore a new color palette for your downsized space.
  3. Use Light Colors As Much as You Can
    You can decorate a smaller living space with light accents to calm the eye. Painting a room in all one light color also brings even more light in. White is always a good choice!
  4. Swap a Square Table for a Round One
    This is a simple solution that could save legs from bruising in every senior living community! A good practice is to swap your square dining or end tables with round ones. Round shapes trick the eye and make smaller spaces feel that much bigger.
  5. Use Mirrors To Make a Room Feel Bigger
    It’s never good to feel constricted in your own space. Sometimes you leave it feeling like you were cooped up. So, no matter how many windows you have, hanging mirrors strategically creates the effect of a larger room. This is a powerful design tip for Independent Living.
  6. Rightsize Your Furniture
    You might love that reading chair, but your senior apartment might not be able to accommodate it without a little creativity. Choosing a smaller piece of furniture might mean it can fit in a corner and free up floor space. This will also make your apartment feel more open and inviting when family members visit.
  7. Research Space-Saving Storage Options – Storage Organizers
    The perfect storage organizer or cabinet can make all the difference to a smaller space. When coordinated with the room’s color scheme, space-saving storage options provide a seamless look of elegance. They also help you maximize available floor, shelf and cupboard space.
  8. Keep the Space Functional and Accessible
    Independent dwellings usually have floor plans that are easy to navigate, but it never hurts for things to be simpler. Be sure to keep walkways clear. Run electronics power cables behind furniture and out of sight. This cuts down on possible tripping hazards, as well.
  9. Use Vertical Space to the Fullest
    Wherever you have wall space, use it! Fill vertical space in living or lounge areas with art or tapestries. This is a great place to hang artwork from the grandkids, too. You can also consider mounting your TV on the wall or installing floating bookshelves to help declutter. Moving items off surfaces and onto walls can work decorating wonders! Using wall space gives smaller spaces character by drawing attention to whatever hangs there, making the room feel both bigger and fuller. A very fun optical illusion!
  10. Clean As You Go
    The idea is to clean as you go. The goal is to work toward a space that is functional and free of clutter and where everything is in its proper place. This will make finding important paperwork, equipment or medications so much easier! Pick things up as you move through the day and always put them back where they belong.
  11. Talk with Your Community’s Moving and Staging Experts
    Chances are that even after decluttering, downsizing and organizing, you’ll still have a lot to move. Reach out to your community and ask if they have any resources or teams in place to help new residents with moving or staging. With the help of experienced staff, we make your transition as fun and smooth as possible. Here at The Admiral, We provide ​​10 hours of rightsizing and space planning services to all new residents with our Senior Move Manager®, Marnie Dawson. 

Discover What City Life at the Lake Can Be for You

We at The Admiral at the Lake offer comfortable and elevated senior living on Chicago’s lakefront. Our Life Plan Community offers Independent Living, Assisted Living, Memory Support, Skilled Nursing and Rehabilitation. Come visit us on the lakefront and see what our community offers.