Many of us end up living in a home or apartment with some space limitations. While you likely can’t physically blow open the walls, smart design can help make a room seem more open and spacious. Here are four tips for selecting furniture and decorations that expand rooms visually.
- Limit ClutterThe first and most obvious step to making a space feel larger is to put less stuff in it. If you’re moving to a new location, go through your belongings and throw out unnecessary items before they have a chance to crowd your new space. If you’re redesigning, get rid of any items that you haven’t used recently or that you don’t love for their appearance.
- Add Glass ElementsReflective or transparent furniture and decorations immediately make a space expand visually. A small glass table next to a couch or used as a coffee table allows the viewer to see through its surface, so the eye passes over and through it to other design elements. Mirrors also trick the eye; they create an odd sense of depth as viewers look past the wall and into the reflected space.
- Choose a Focal PointJust as clear glass elements deflect a viewer’s gaze, a bright, interesting statement piece of art or furniture will draw a viewer’s gaze. Choosing one part of a room to highlight will make any space seem larger as other elements fade from interest. For example, a red chair in a reading nook will draw attention and make the room seem larger if the decor elsewhere is minimal and clean.
- Maximize LightingFinally, a bright room is a big room. Make the most of natural lighting by keeping windows minimally blocked. Adding reflective design elements, like small glass tables or floating glass shelves, can help scatter light to a room’s darker corners. Don’t overdo reflective surfaces, though– try frosted glass cabinets or even a small, black glass table to distribute light without having too many repeated images in mirror-like surfaces. If you want to keep windows uncovered but are wary of too much heat and glare entering the room, tinted glass panels in windows are a great option, too.
With smart design elements, small rooms can be charming and cozy without feeling cramped. By creating focal points and playing with light, you can achieve a dramatic and expansive look in almost any undersized room!