Design Tricks To Make Your Small Space Feel Bigger: Tips From The Experts

Sep 26, 2018by Kimberly Foerst
There are many ways to make small rooms look and feel larger without having to knock down walls. A skilled interior designer or decorator can make a room with minimal square footage still feel spacious.

Design Tricks To Make Your Small Space Feel Bigger: Tips From The Experts

We spoke to professional interior designers and interior decorators to learn the tricks of the trade.

5 Experts Share Decorating Tricks to Make Your Small Space Look And Feel Bigger

Diana Gill Interior Design ExpertThe number one key to making a small room look bigger is mirrors! Mirrors do wonders. If you are feeling extra adventurous, cover one entire wall with mirrors and notice how it adds instant depth. Another tip is to stay close to neutral paint tones, as darker colors can make any room look smaller. Finally, the furniture that you choose needs to fit seamlessly with your square footage, a couch or table that’s too big in an already small room can disrupt the design and make the room look smaller.
Diana Gill –
Denise O'Connor1. Not having enough space to entertain is a common problem with smaller homes. A great idea is to build in a bench or banquette seat in your dining space. Not only will this almost double your seating capacity, but it will also add real impact to your space. Pedestal dining tables work best with bench or banquette seating arrangements as the table legs don't obstruct those from getting in and out from the bench seat.
2. Select one finish for your floors throughout the living spaces in your home, or if you live in an apartment consider running the same finish throughout. By eliminating the visual breaks that thresholds create between different floors (i.e from tiles to timber or carpet), you will make your home feel more spacious as the rooms will flow seamlessly from one to the other.
Denise O'Connor –
Karen Mills, Interior DesignerLiving large in smaller spaces has become a huge trend, so we are constantly called upon to help clients downsize from their mega mansions to more functional spaces that still live well. Our first recommendation? Open up rooms to one another and to the outdoors with French doors or windows, along with adding layers of light from ceiling cans and chandeliers to lamps. Also, consider raising ceilings or doors/windows to visually enlarge your rooms.
Next, bring in the same flooring throughout with light neutral walls, ensuring you remove dark heavy drapes, most busy patterns, and extra furniture and decor that can give your room a cluttered feel.
Finally, consider adding built-in storage or seating like a window seat with shelves along with a large lighter rug underneath upholstery and mirrors to help give your rooms a more expansive airy look.
Karen Mills –
Carla AstonOne of the biggest ways to make any space feel bigger and more expansive is to create fewer visual transitions, to have an overall same color or value, especially at walls and ceiling.
I've preached this many times in bathroom design. If you make the tile shower walls, the painted walls and ceiling, the whole envelope of the space all one color and value, the space will expand visually. Then you can add variation, contrast and highlight features like lower cabinets, flooring, lighting, fixtures and other features in the space. They will stand out more as special objects in the space.

That also means not having contrasting crown moulding -- painting walls, mouldings and ceilings all the same color so that the envelope isn't chopped up. That can visually expand the space tremendously no matter what color (light, dark or in between) that you use.
Carla Aston, ASID –
Interior Designer Deborah LeamannWhen confronted with small scale rooms/spaces, my first course of action is to keep the overall color scheme more monochromatic. This gives the eye the ability rest, and the room appears to be larger. You can go light or dark with colors as long as they're of similar value. A small, dark room can feel welcoming and cozy.
I like to use less furnishings and accessories but pump up the scale. For instance, place a large mirror on a small wall, and it instantly feels larger. One large piece of art rather than many small pictures again creates drama but gives a small room a cohesive vibe. Natural light, if accessible, is always a bonus. I recently used a light tube in a bathroom with no window to create a light and bright airy feel.
Deborah Leamann –


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