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Exterior and Interior: Design & Inspiration Blog

10 Ways to make your room look Bigger and Spacious

Everyone who lives in a city apartment can relate to living in small spaces. With rooms becoming smaller, who wouldn’t want their rooms to look bigger and more spacious? But achieving this can be challenging at times. Here I give 10 you easy, simple and efficient ways to make your room look bigger and better.

1.  Less is more

For your small space, be it your bedroom, bathroom or even a wardrobe, “Less is More” is the key mantra. Keep in mind to do away with all that is unnecessary or too many in your space. For example, consider placing just one wall art instead of a photo wall with 10 photo frames. Consider having less number of chairs in your small dining room. Minimize the number of souvenirs on display. In short, minimize the clutter in the room. This step can be intimidating for a lot of us, but trust me I emphasize on this the most, as it will instantly and with least investment enhance the look of the room. The lesser number of items in the room will make it look more organized and in turn a lot more spacious.

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Notice how minimal items are placed in the room. An appropriate amount of vacant space is left on the display shelves too.

2.     Opt for hidden storage

Hide it if you want to keep it! Too many visible objects disturb the visual harmony & unity of the room. Small rooms, in particular, look cluttered if there are too many objects lying around. The best way is to opt for storage solutions which can hide and store objects.

Even in the kitchen, try to keep minimum items visible to give a clutter free spacious look.

Even in the kitchen, try to keep minimum items visible to give a clutter free spacious look.

Avoid cluttering the nightstand by using one with drawers for storing your phone or books

Avoid cluttering the nightstand by using one with drawers for storing your phone or books

3.     Avoid the Bulk

Do away with the bulk. Be it a large sofa, heavy looking wooden shelving units or just thickly layered curtains blocking the window. Why not just use the bulky chest of drawers for some other room? Large bulky items create heaviness by filling in space horizontally and vertically and block the extended views further into the room thereby making the room look smaller than actual. Incorporate furniture items that are minimal and sleek, yet solving the purpose. A glass dining table instead of a teak wood one can do wonders to open up space.

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Here, the use of sleek minimalistic furniture saves critical space in the open kitchen.

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Using glass shelves instead of regular solid partitions can make the furniture look less imposing even when placed in a small room.

4. Use Multifunctional Items

Buying multifunctional items are like an investment for small spaces. You can opt for Sofa cum beds that can come handy for guests or an ottoman coffee table that can also be used for extra seating when required.

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The ottoman coffee table can serve as seating when needed.

5.     Let there be light

Light plays a critical role in creating the character of the space. Make sure all the corners of the room are properly lit either by one or more sources. Avoid covering the windows and doors with curtains. Bring as much natural light as possible as this extends the view beyond the room making it look bigger. Using multiple artificial lighting fixtures in a small prevents dark spots and adds visual dynamism too.

Large uncovered windows make the room look bigger and spacious

Large uncovered windows draw the eye further, making the room airy and larger.

6.     Avoid Partitions

Try to attain an open plan for smaller areas. Avoiding physical or visual partitions can help in creating larger looking spaces. Where partitions are necessary, try movable partitions (curtains, partition wall on wheels) which give flexibility to the area or translucent partitions which allow some amount of light and visual continuity.

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This sliding glass partition can be rolled out to open up the living room.

7.     Use Mirrors

The most common addition is placing a mirror in the room which can reflect the view and light, making the room look bigger than actual. But the real trick is to determine the strategic points where the mirror should be placed. The mirror can be placed on the wall diagonally opposite to the room entrance to fool the eye at the beginning itself. The mirrors can be placed at points with reference to the seating arrangement in the room. For example placing a mirror to reflect the outside inside via window or door reflection in the mirror.

Mirrors make the room look bigger and spacious

Wardrobe with full mirror reflects light and makes the room bigger.

8.     Show the floor

The biggest mistake we make in our small rooms is to cover the floor partially by fancy rugs and have furniture with no raised legs. Having items which have least contact with floor given a feel of lightness to the room.

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Notice the use of simple furniture with high legs which do not block the view floor and objects beyond.

9.     Stripe it. Horizontal and vertical

Parallel lines help in visually drawing the eye into space thereby giving and elongated feel. The best way to incorporate stripes is to have wallpaper with horizontal lines (which have a widening effect) or vertical lines (to make the room look higher). Applying horizontal striped wallpaper on opposite wall or a striped floor rug along the longest length of the room gives best results.

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Horizontal stripes visually elongate the room along its length

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Smart placement of wooden planks on wall further heightens the living room and planks on the ceiling give more depth to it.

10.     Colour, Pattern & Texture

Lighter colors reflect light creating an overall airiness in the room. Light neutral colors like white, off whites and light pastel shades, are best options for a small room. The lighter color scheme applies not only to the walls but also should be continued all along the upholstery and accessories in the room. The aim is to achieve visual unity in the room by using a similar color palette. Match some of the furniture items with the same color as that of your walls to blend into your space.

Avoid using too many patterns or textures in the room as they tend to make the room look busy and unorganized. Choose one or two patterns and repeat them over the entire space. In case of prints, choose small prints that don’t overpower the space visually. This will not only induce coherence but also add interest to the overall space.

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This is a good example of the use of neutral color palette of off-whites, beige, and browns with minimal use of patterns

To end with, I leave you with a beautiful transformation by Stacey Cohen. This makeover aptly demonstrates the tips listed above: 

The fine use of neutral color palette with minimal patterns, minimizing display items, letting go of the bulky wooden cabinet. It is interesting to note the new placement of curtain rod which visually opens up the whole room and allows the eye to go higher. All these changes give this living room a bigger and more airy feel.

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2 Comments

  1. Very useful, will try it at my home.. I have used the mirrors similarly in post which does make the room look spacious and nice.

  2. New ideas here.

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