Living in a small space may feel cosy initially, but after a while, it may begin to feel restrictive and uncomfortable. Your home should be a safe haven to unwind in after a long, tiring day at work, but in a cramped environment, your stress levels might start rising…
How to Make Your Small Home Seem Bigger
It may not be possible for you to relocate or expand, but all is not lost! There are so many straightforward ways to trick the eye into thinking a space is bigger than it is.
A Splash of Colour
Your choice of colour scheme is crucial for defining a space.
Avoiding dark colours is a must. Whilst colours like navy, burgundy, and chocolate brown are perfect for generating a cosy, intimate vibe, they, unfortunately, cause spaces to feel very enclosed, absorbing light rather than reflecting it. The snug feels you want to achieve with these darker shades will have an adverse effect, making the room feel very poky.
Opting for lighter colours adds brightness and an airy, breezy feel to a room. This will trick your eye into thinking space is larger.
Steer clear of using plain white as this will make the environment feel quite clinical. Splash on off-white shades or colours like nude, beige, tan, duck egg, and mint green to achieve the spacious look you’re going for.
Colour choice doesn’t stop at the walls. If you match the colour of your curtains to the colours of your walls, you will also elevate the expansive feel of a room. Spaces tend to be broken up by contrasting colours, which will only work to emphasise its smallness, so aim to blend the room together by choosing similar colours.
Clear All Your Clutter
An obvious step to take is to declutter your home. This will automatically release actual space which will make your home feel less cramped.
You may be surprised by how much you are holding on to that adds no value to your property. These excess items will actually have a negative effect on your comfort in your home, making space feel even more compact. Having such a large inventory of possessions also adds extra strain on you in terms of maintenance and cleaning.
Take a step back and think about what various ornaments, cushions, plants, and other accessories really add to space. If they add very little, bringing you unnecessary stress and no joy, then it’s time to part with them.
To give off the illusion of lots of open space, shelving, coffee tables, and end tables shouldn’t be stuffed with trinkets. Opt for very few but key pieces to add some character and personality to your space without going overboard.
Small interiors really benefit from a minimalist aesthetic, so the fewer, but better quality items you have, the better. Choose items that mean something to you and that add value to space rather than simply filling it with accessories for the sake of it.
If you find that you have possessions that you don’t want to display in your home but really mean something to you, like a family heirloom, there is a compromise. You could opt to place select items in a self-storage unit until a later date so they don’t stand in the way of your space-enhancing efforts. This way, you’ll know they are more safe and secure than they would be shoved into the back of your cupboard.
As well as your smaller knick-knacks, your choice and positioning of bigger, essential furniture pieces play a massive role in defining the size of your space.
Contrary to what many may think, having a few bulkier items of furniture in a space will open up space more, whereas having lots of smaller items of furniture will give the impression of clutter and restriction.
Multi-functional items are a great way to make use of the space if you are using fewer items. Pieces like Ottomans can be used as storage as well as extra seating, reducing the amount of stuff you need to bring into your home.
Furniture with exposed legs also opens up space as opposed to boxy sofas.
The positioning of your furniture critically affects your perception of space. Pushing furniture right up against the walls will make the environment feel cramped. Pulling your sofa even a few inches away from the wall helps to open up space.
Striking the right balance with the flow of your furniture does wonder for creating space.
Light It Up!
Using multiple types of lighting in a room enlarges a space, as well as achieving a comfortable, warm feel.
Ceiling lights will draw your eyes to the ceiling, emphasising the height of the room. Relying on this one source of light, however, may cause light to pool in one place, making space feel harsh and closed-off.
Spreading out light across space will guide your eye around the whole room, helping it to appear larger. Placing a standing lamp in the corner will emphasise its width.
Given that we recommend not using dark colours in the space, using various kinds of lighting will achieve the same cosiness whilst ensuring the room feels expansive.
Mirror, Mirror, On The Wall
To make good use of natural light to expand a room, mirrors are fantastic.
Strategically placing a large mirror across from a bright window gives the illusion that there is more space in a room. The light reflecting off of the mirror from the window will bounce around the room, creating an open and bright space.
If you are on a budget and can’t afford a single, large mirror, you can hunt around thrift shops for a good deal, or just place a collection of smaller mirrors on the wall in a grouping to achieve the same effect.
Open Up Your Space!
Banish those nights of going stir-crazy in a squashed, uncomfortable home with these tips.
Putting these easy ideas into practice will lighten up your home, enhancing and expanding your space so you can fully relax in it.
About the Author
Carol is a freelance writer for Storage Vault Glasgow and is absolutely bonkers about storage and productivity. If not writing lists, press releases or blog articles — you can find her exploring the Scottish highlands with her Macbook and notepad looking for inspiration and adventure.