• 12/05/2022

How to Make a Small Room Look Bigger: 7 Simple Tips

a tiny living room where you can learn how to make a small room look bigger

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When you live in a tiny place, you desperately want to know how to make a small room look bigger. Whether you live in a tiny house, apartment, condo or home, you can use these professional tips to trick the eye and maximize your space. You’ll learn how to pick the right furniture, select the right paint colors and so much more. 

1. Light Walls

Light colors, like white, make a room appear brighter and larger. On the other hand, dark, saturated colors absorb light and make it feel smaller. If you want to steer away from plain light walls, you can play with color a little to create an optical illusion. Painting your walls all one color and leaving the ceiling white draws your eye upward, making your ceilings look taller. Adding bright neutral trim or wainscoting to a dark room can also help visually expand the space. 

A potted plant sits on a white table in front of a white wall.

2. Banish Clutter

One of the easiest ways for how to make a small room look bigger is to reduce the number of items in the space. Take a good hard look at all the display items and pieces of furniture you have. Donate or sell anything you don’t absolutely love or need. Take pictures before and after removing the surplus stuff, and you’ll be shocked at how much this cost-free tip boosted the look of your room. 

3. Keep Artwork to a Minimum

An abundance of knickknacks and furniture isn’t the only decorative aspect visually diminishing the size of your space. Your artwork significantly impacts how large a room appears to be. Hanging many small items around the area makes it seem cluttered and small. Instead, go for one large statement piece. It will draw your eye in as a focal point, and its size will trick you into thinking the scale of the art matches the scale of the room. 

Two simple line drawings are framed above a bed.

4. Take Advantage of Vertical Space

Built-ins and shelves are a great way to get things up off the floor. Storage baskets and bins work well for storage but take up valuable walking space. Moving your possessions to vertically oriented storage options provides a place to put things without using square footage. 

Look out for nooks you can repurpose with some shelves. In a kid’s room, you could ditch the traditional bed for a bunk with a desk or toys underneath. You’ll find many ways to build up rather than out once you start looking with that intention. 

5. Pick Low-Profile Furniture

Furniture can make or break how a room feels — the wrong pieces will crowd the room, taking up valuable walkways and wall space, while the right choices can make the room feel bigger. When furniture shopping, look for items with low backs and arms, open legs, transparent or reflective surfaces and light, neutral fabrics. Being able to see through, over and around your pieces will add to the illusion of more space. 

A simple brown couch sits next to a vase of pampas grass.

6. Bring in Natural Light

Natural light is one of the best ways for how to make a small room look bigger. Sunshine illuminates the room, adding to its estimated size. Also, windows to the outside make your home look as though it expands beyond its borders out into the world. 

To maximize the effect, skip curtains or hang them wider than the window so they don’t block any light when open. You may also want to avoid blinds. As an extra pro tip, hanging your curtains well above the window draws the eye upward and makes your ceilings appear higher. 

7. Add a Mirror or Two

Mirrors aren’t just beautiful decorations — they’re the ultimate space-creating illusion. When you have limited lighting, especially from outside, a strategically hung mirror can reflect that light and ambiance around the room. They can also mirror your interior space, making it seem like the room continues past the edges of the frame. 

A round mirror hangs on a white wall.

Try These Tips for How to Make a Small Room Look Bigger

Now that you’ve learned how to make a small room look bigger, get started on your first project. The easiest and cheapest way to begin is to declutter your space, removing extra trinkets and unnecessary furniture. Aside from that, adding light-colored paint and plenty of lighting options will help take your rooms from feeling cramped to cozy.

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