9 Small Cafe Design Ideas for Business Owners

9 Small Cafe Design Ideas for Business Owners

If you're like most business owners, you know that a well-run cafe can be a lucrative venture. But what if you're not sure where to start when it comes to designing your space? These nine small cafe design ideas will help get you started!

The rise of the independent British cafe

The modern British cafe has come a long way from its humble beginnings as a counter at the local corner store. Today, independent cafes are vibrant and dynamic spaces, offering everything from artisan coffee to locally sourced organic food. Much of this renaissance can be attributed to the growing interest in environmental sustainability and social consciousness in recent years. With concerns about overconsumption and climate change on the rise, more people are turning to smaller, independent businesses for their everyday needs.

Additionally, many younger generations feel that the relaxed atmosphere of these cafes reflects their values and aspirations. Whatever the reasons behind it, the rise of the independent British cafe is an exciting development that shows no signs of slowing down any time soon.

1. Keep the colour palette bright and earthy

When designing a small cafe, it is important to consider what colour palette you'd like to us. A bold use of colours can help to evoke energy and excitement, encouraging customers to come in and stay for a while. At the same time, utilising more subdued, natural tones helps to create an ambience that feels calm and relaxing. Additionally, using an earthy colour palette helps to ensure that the space is aesthetically pleasing and in keeping with the vibe of the surrounding environment.

Whether you are using bright pops of colour or more muted accents, it is essential to carefully consider how best to balance aesthetics with function when designing a small cafe. After all, a subtle yet stylish space can make all the difference in drawing in new customers and helping your business thrive!

2. Play with rustic floor tiles

When designing a small cafe, it's important to strike a good balance between style and function. While you want your space to be beautiful and inviting, you also need it to be practical and easy to navigate. One great way to achieve this balance is by using rustic floor tiles. These unique tiles have an understated elegance that sets them apart from other types of flooring while still retaining a timeless appeal.

Rustic floor tiles bring a welcoming warmth and texture to any interior, making them the perfect choice for applications such as cafes or restaurants. And with their rugged feel, rustic floor tiles are also a great option for those who want to incorporate some earthiness into their design scheme. So if you're looking to create an eye-catching yet functional space, consider incorporating some rustic floors into your design!

3. Use rattan pendant lights for a boho look

When it comes to designing a small cafe, having the right lighting is key. Lighting can be used to create ambience, accentuate decor elements, or set the mood for customers. For a boho look guaranteed to capture the imagination, there is no better choice than rattan pendant lights. These unique fixtures feature delicate strands of woven rattan in a variety of colours and styles, creating a warm and inviting glow in any space.
Not only do they add character and personality to your cafe, but they also come in a variety of sizes, making them ideal for any type of room or seating arrangement. So if you're looking to create an on-trend and eye-catching environment for your customers, look no further than rattan pendant lights!

4. Hang up tasteful wall art for pops of colour

When designing a small cafe or other space, it can be challenging to add colour and visual interest without overcrowding the room. After all, every inch of wall and floorspace counts when you're working with a limited amount of square footage. One effective solution for adding pops of colour is to hang up tasteful wall art.

Whether it's an abstract painting, a vintage poster, or a few framed photos, interesting art creates visual drama and helps break up blank expanses of walls. Better yet, this type of decor also gives business owners a great opportunity to showcase their style and creativity. So why not hang up some eye-catching art and infuse your small cafe with some much-needed vibrancy? The results will be well worth the effort!

5. Try terrazzo for an Italian cafe vibe

Terrazzo is a popular material for designing cafes and restaurants, as it gives a real sense of style and sophistication. Terrazzo tiles are typically made from small pieces of glass or marble that have been fused with cement and then polished to create a smooth, gleaming surface. This terrazzo material can be combined with other textures like wood or concrete to create an eclectic and uniquely Italian vibe in your cafe design.

Whether you are looking to add terrazzo flooring, terrazzo countertops, or terrazzo bar tops, this material is perfect for creating an authentic Italian feel for your business. So why not try terrazzo for your next cafe redesign? It will help to perfectly capture the elegance and charm that every great cafe should have.

6. Contrast dark and light colours in your cafe

When designing a small cafe, it is important to consider the contrast between dark and light colours. Darker colours tend to recede, creating the appearance of depth within the space, whereas lighter colours seem to come forward and envelop the viewer. While this contrast may seem simple at first, choosing the appropriate colours for your cafe can be challenging.

On one hand, you want your space to feel warm and welcoming; on the other, you want to create an air of sophistication that will attract patrons. Ultimately, it is up to you to decide how dark or light you want your cafe to be to strike this balance. Whether you choose bold hues or more neutral tones, you must consider how these colours will interact with each other and with the rest of your cafe's design.
In doing so, you will be able to create a truly dynamic space that invites customers in and makes them feel at home in your establishment. After all, a small cafe is nothing without its customers!

7. Open the space up with low-sitting furniture

When designing a small cafe, one of the most important aspects to consider is the size and layout of the space. A smaller room can feel cramped and limiting if the furniture is too bulky or heavy, so it's important to choose low-sitting furniture that can help to open up the space. This might include things like sofa seating or coffee tables that sit low to the ground, as well as decorative elements like plants and paintings.

By making use of low-lying furniture and accents, you can create a more spacious and welcoming environment in your cafe. Ultimately, this will help to attract more customers and make your business more successful overall. So if you're looking to spruce up your small cafe, consider using low-sitting furniture to help open up the space. You won't regret it!

8. Pick houseplants that complement your colour scheme

When designing a small cafe, it is important to think carefully about every aspect of the space, from the layout and furnishings to the colour scheme and houseplants. One factor that many people often overlook is the choice of houseplants. When selecting plants for your space, it is crucial to consider not only their individual qualities but also how they will interact with other elements in your design. For example, choosing houseplants that complement your colour scheme can make a big difference in creating a cohesive and welcoming atmosphere in your cafe.

To start, it is important to identify the main colours that are featured in your space. This may be determined by the existing decor or by the shades of paint on the walls or floors. Once you have identified these key hues, you can then choose houseplants that will bring out those colours further and help tie all the different design elements together. For example, bright pink flowers like fuchsias or hibiscus would make an attractive contrast to cooler blue tones or darker browns and greys.

Meanwhile, accenting rooms with brightly coloured plants like succulents could make a statement against darker or neutral backgrounds. By carefully considering both colour and style when selecting houseplants for your cafe, you can help create a truly one-of-a-kind space that is sure to delight your customers.

9. Hang macrame wall hangings for texture

When designing a small cafe, it is important to consider the visual texture of your space. Choosing the right materials and incorporating elements like macrame wall hangings can help create a warm and inviting atmosphere that draws people in. Not only do these textured elements help to soften the lines and angles of space, but they also add character and visual interest.

Hang macrame wall hangings at regular intervals for an added dose of texture, or mix in other textured accents like woven placemats, rugs, or raw brick walls for a cohesive and polished look. Whether you're going for a cozy cafe vibe or modern industrial styling, incorporating the right textures is key to creating the perfect ambience.


If you're looking for some small cafe design ideas to help your business, we hope that this article has given you a few good places to start. Keep in mind that the final look of your cafe should be something that represents you and makes customers feel comfortable and at home. Do your research, get creative, and have fun with it! What's the next step in designing your perfect cafe?

We’re proud to help hundreds of British businesses with their interiors every year. With one of the UK’s largest selections of floor and wall tiles, we’re sure you’ll find the perfect tile for your cafe’s interior design. Shop for high-quality, affordable tiles here.

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