Where to Shop on Taobao for Smart, Space-Saving Furniture

September 19, 2018

You need it to be practical. You want it to look nice. And, it should preferably have enough room for you to squeeze in a little extra stuff on the side (like your Gundam figurine collection). You’re not asking a lot out of your compact, 93sqm 4-room flat, is it?

No, not at all. But before you go tearing hairs out figuring how you’re going to fit everything and still have enough space to walk, check out these furniture labels on Taobao! From compact, apartment-friendly pieces to multi-purpose, modular furniture, they make the idea of living in a small space doable and (dare we say it) ultra-cool.

1. 木邻 / Mulin Home

Offering mid-century Nordic furniture with a space-saving slant, Mulin’s range of cherry wood, brass-knobbed pieces are a sight for sore eyes. Plus, we love that their slim items work great in small apartment spaces and often come with thoughtful practical touches.

Our Picks:

1. Cloud Vanity Table/Study Desk

Source: 木邻

Lift the top shelf of the table to reveal a mirror. The piece comes with a slide-out top that converts the vanity table into a laptop stand/study desk.

2. Magazine Rack

Source: 木邻

Perfect for displaying your favourite books/magazines and random knick knacks, this display cabinet provides additional storage space in its back, along with carved-in ‘holes’ for electrical wires to run through for a seamless, clutter-free look.

2. 静研 / Jingyan

Think of Jingyan’s collection as a cross between MUJI and Commune; solid wood pieces in dark walnut and light oak take center stage here. Featuring curved profiles in simple, timeless shapes, the shop’s furniture pieces are decidedly compact – and practical too.

Our Picks:

1. Everyone’s Desk

Source: 静研

Starting from as small as 0.95m (in length), the aptly named ‘Everyone’s Desk’ is a slim, classic piece that works for all ages. The table comes with a slide-out drawer, niches for propping up pens and electronic devices plus knobs on the sides for hanging bags.

2. 4-way Hanger

Source: 静研

Like a mini wardrobe of sorts, this square shaped coat rack can be used to hang a multitude of items – clothes, bags, umbrellas, even shoes at the bottom.

3. Shoe Rack with Stool

Source: 静研

This compact piece comes with an accompanying stool that can be tucked underneath, reducing any unwanted clutter.

3. 原始原素 / Yuan Shi Yuan Su

Store 原始原素’s contemporary range of wood-based furniture brings a homely, cosy touch to any interior. But more importantly, the brand’s got an extensive collection of multi-functional pieces (read: bed frames) for space-constrained rooms too.

Our Picks:

1. Storage Bed Frame with Headboard Shelving

Source: 原始原素

Available in Queen size (perfect for most HDB bedrooms!), this oak storage bed model comes with two pull-out drawers, two roomy compartments underneath, a headboard with shelving for placing books or spectacles on, plus a charging port for your electronics.

2. Storage Bed Frame with Headboard Shelving and Cubbies

Source: 原始原素

Another iteration, this storage bed model is slightly chunkier, and includes two enclosed cabinets and two shelves on its headboard for more bedside storage space.

3. Extendable Dining Table Set

Source: 原始原素

Set in classic solid oak, this boxy, 0.9m long dining table can be extended to 1.55m, fitting up to 8 guests.

4. 吱音 / Ziinlife!

Looking for something unique, one-of-a-kind and borderline genius? Ziinlife’s range of well-designed goods have been featured on the likes of Elle Decoration China for their smart, multi-purpose and shape-shifting furniture. Doesn’t hurt that they look terribly gorgeous, too.

1. Greet Tea Table

Source: 吱音

Designed for tea ceremonies, this roomy coffee table includes storage shelves and a compartment for fitting in an entire water tank (yes). To top things off, there’s a niche for fitting in a water supply tube and electrical cables, so you can plug in a portable kettle or water dispenser, right in your living room.

2. Moving Wardrobe

Source: 吱音

It’s a suitcase, an end-table, and if you pull its top up – a mini-wardrobe rack that you can port around or stow away whenever you need (or don’t need) it. Magic.

3. Dali Bar Table

Source: 吱音

Perfect if you don’t have a lot of dining ‘room’ to work with, this quirky bar top has a collapsible side that can be curled up against a wall for a shorter length.

4. Apo Cabinet

Source: 吱音

Alternatively, this innocuous bookshelf can be folded out to become a cosy, 2-seater dining table, and has storage cabinets underneath for storing stools.

5. ½ Coffee Table

Source: 吱音

As its name implies, the ½ coffee table works as a standalone set, but can be split into two, full-sized pieces for more tabletop space.

5. 十八纸 / Eighteen Papers

Yes, they may be made of kraft paper, but don’t scoff at 十八纸’s collapsible, modular furniture pieces just yet. Sturdy enough to hold the weights of multiple people at once and even waterproof – which the brand often emphasizes on its webpage – their accordion-like products might just be the space-saving design centerpiece to your compact home.

1. Folding Stool

Source: 十八纸

Instead of clogging up your storeroom with stackable chairs, get these handy, space-saving ‘books’, which can be extended to form stools for extra guests.

2. Folding Bench

Source: 十八纸

For something larger scale, the brand also offers folding benches which can be extended up to 150cm, seating up to 3 guests. Entirely mouldable, you can twist and curl them however you like to fit your space too.

3. Foldable End Table

Source: 十八纸

Not that comfortable with sitting on paper? Get a fold-out end table that doubles as a great statement piece in your compact space.

6. 华纳斯 / Huanasi

More function over form? 华纳斯’s ultra-practical range of furniture emphasizes on making the most of every space, with pieces jam packed with storage compartments and collapsible features.

1. Foldable Dining Table

Source: 华纳斯

The ultimate space-saving piece, this compact wood slab can stowed at a corner, and can be extended into not just a 2-seater table top, but twice its size to fit 4 diners.

2. Coffee Table

Source: 华纳斯

This coffee table is full of surprises – one side of its top can be lifted up to reveal a hidden storage compartment, plus be used as a laptop stand. Meanwhile, it has a movable tray which can be removed to place snacks or drinks at the side.

7. 杰诗维 / Jieshiwei

Specialising in Nordic-themed furniture, the store’s perfect if you have a thing for pastels like mint green and baby blue. Also, they do stock some seriously practical finds which are made for small apartments, like…

1. Swivel Mirror with Storage Compartments

Source: 杰诗维

Why get 4 separate cabinets when you can have one – that even swivels? On top of being just a mirror, this piece also includes a mini-wardrobe, pull-out jewelry compartment, makeup shelves and a drawer.

2. Foldable Dining Table/Buffet

Source: 杰诗维

It’s like having your entire dining room in one slim cabinet. Drawers and shelves can be used to place utensils and dinnerware, while the cabinet fronts can be transformed into a full-scale tabletop that seats 6. Best part? It has wheels – say hello to a movable dining room!

3. Modular Sofa Bed

Source: 杰诗维

Not your average sofa (or sofa-bed), this modular piece can be separated to form a 3-seater-cum ottoman, an L-shaped sofa, a roomy sofa bed, or a spacious 2-seater with side table. Oh and before we forget, there are storage compartments underneath every cushion as well.

Hey there - just so you know, all products listed in this article are independently curated by us. By clicking and purchasing from the Taobao links, you will help to support our research and work by allowing us to earn a share of sales - here's a big thank you in advance! Do note that prices listed are accurate as of the time of writing.

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