We are no strangers to small space living in our home. Our house is an older cape cod, which we love dearly with all its quirks and “New England charm,” as they call it here. But that means we have smaller closets and rooms than your average home.
When we first saw the house, it was empty, so we didn’t even realize how small it was until we added all of our furniture and belongings. For example, our living room is 11 by 11 feet, and definitely on the smaller side especially considering it’s the most used room in our house. So it’s super important that we utilize every square inch of space, while at the same time not make the room feel cluttered and cramped.
So I have become quite adept at finding and making space where there appears to be none! Check out my tips and tricks to help to make a room look and feel larger no matter how small it really is.
How to Make a Small Room Look Bigger
1. Declutter the room. This is the MOST important thing you can do to make your space look larger! I can’t tell you how much more open a room looks when it’s been through a good decluttering. Get rid of things you don’t use or need. There’s no reason to have 100 different books, magazines, toys, and knick knacks sitting around taking up space. Choose a few favorites to keep, and get rid of the rest. Unnecessary clutter can make a room feel small and cramped and make it harder to navigate around.
2. Select light colors. Lighter colors reflect light, making a room feel brighter and larger, while darker colors absorb light and make a room feel smaller and closed in. Choose light colors for larger items like the walls, floors, and curtains so that the room will feel more open and airy. Neutrals, pastels, and lighter colors make a room feel larger and more spacious.
3. Rearrange furniture. You might find that by rearranging your furniture into a different layout, you end up with more space, open the room up, and make it easier to navigate. If there’s a piece of furniture in your room that doesn’t get much use, consider removing it to free up some space.
4. Let the light in. If you have large windows in your room, don’t cover them up with dark, heavy curtains or blinds. Open them up and let all that natural light in! Follow this easy trick when you’re hanging curtains and hang your curtains higher and wider to make the windows look larger. It really draws the eyes upwards, making the room appear larger and taller. Or you could even forego window treatments altogether for a really open, fresh look.
5. Decorate selectively. A room doesn’t need to be covered in pictures, books, and knick knacks for it to feel decorated. A few tasteful decorations can help you add personal style and infuse a bit of color into your space. Some brightly colored objects that really pop are all you really need to make a statement.
6. Look for furniture that serves more than one purpose. Think outside the box. Just because a piece of furniture is marketed as one thing doesn’t mean it can’t be used for something else. A bookshelf can double as a TV stand, an ottoman can be used as seating and a side table, etc. Furniture with hidden storage is also good because it helps to keep your home organized and clutter out of sight!
7. Choose an appropriate rug. An area rug that is too small for a room can make the room feel much smaller. Ideally, the rug should at least be large enough that you can place the front feet of the furniture on it, such as couches or chairs. A nicely sized area rug allows the eyes go from end to end of the entire room, which makes the room feel much larger.
8. Use mirrors. Mirrors reflect light and images, which can make a small room look bigger, especially if they’re placed in the right spot. Mirrors not only make a room feel larger, but they give the room more depth and can also double as a beautiful decoration.
9. Measure before buying furniture. That over-sized couch might look perfect inside a large store showroom, but when you bring it home you find it’s taking up half your living room! Save yourself the money and heartache, and measure first to make sure before you buy anything that it will fit in your space. Look for furniture that has a smaller profile to save space.
10. Add legs to your furniture. By lifting furniture off of the ground, it makes the room feel more open and airy than when furniture is sitting flat on its bottom. Check out this tutorial to see how you can easily add legs to your own furniture.
How do you make your small room look bigger? Do you have any other tips or tricks to add to the list? Let me know in the comments! And be sure to subscribe to my newsletter below so that you can receive my weekly newsletter full of fun DIY home decor ideas, craft tutorials, and free printables!