Ways to make a small space look bigger
Whether it’s a small studio apartment, a tiny bedroom, or a cramped living room, small spaces can be frustrating to design and decorate. The following tips can help small spaces look bigger – even without adding actual square footage.
- Stick with light colors on the walls and floors. While dark colors can help a room feel cozy, they also absorb light; this can make a small room feel even smaller. Sticking with light shades for the walls and floors can help reflect natural light and open up a space.
- Add visual detail to the ceiling. Bold crown molding, paint, or wallpaper on the ceiling can all draw the eye upward; doing this makes the room seem taller.
- Match curtains and wall colors. Find curtains or drapes in the same shade as your walls. Using the same color helps the room appear larger by creating a cohesive visual look. As a bonus, make your windows seem even bigger by hanging floor-length curtain panels from the ceiling instead of only around the window frame.
- Use mirrors as wall art. Mirrors reflect light, making a room seem brighter than it is.
- Find furniture with raised legs. Avoid furniture that sits directly on the floor. Instead, opt for beds, tables, sofas, or armchairs with raised legs. This creates a sense of light and space around the furniture.
- Make sure everything has a purpose. Even a few stray books or magazines can leave a small space feeling cramped and cluttered. Keep spaces clean and functional by ensuring everything has a purpose. When decluttering, following the 90-90 rule; if you have not used it in 90 days and do not plan on using it in the next 90 days, it may be time for that item to go.
- Use multi-functional furniture. In a small space, many pieces need to serve double duty. Multifunctional pieces allow you to get the most out of a space without taking up additional space; an upholstered ottoman with a hinged lid, for example, can be used as both storage and extra seating.
- Don’t fill up every shelf. When space is at a premium, it can be tempting to use every nook and cranny on shelves. Instead, leave empty space to keep a room from feeling cramped or overcrowded.
- Choose one or two large pieces. Many homeowners believe only small furniture can be used in a small space. Instead of a number of smaller chairs, opt for a larger, statement couch; this creates visual interest and gives the room a focal point.