If there is one universal truth, it’s that perception is reality, which is great news for anyone that is looking to make their home feel that much bigger but doesn’t have the money, time or space to tag an extension on to their home. Instead, all you need to do is use a few design tricks to make it look like you own more square-footage than you actually do. Oh, yeah, this is totally possible, which is because poor design and ill-planned decor are the two main culprits when it comes to that feeling of your walls closing in on you.
That is why we have spoken to the wisest gurus of interior design industry to help us compile a list of essential tips and tricks to help make your home feel immeasurably bigger, much more welcoming and wonderfully spacious, no matter what size home you live in. Apartment, maisonette, one-bed flat, or townhouse; we’ve compiled a list of ingenious solutions to make your home feel roomier. Like we said, perception is reality.
Focal Point Furniture
Just because you have a small room to play with doesn’t mean you can’t have fun with larger pieces of furniture. Quite the contrary, dear Watson. You see, instead of having a room that is littered with smaller pieces of furniture, you will create the impression of a bigger room by having one oversized piece that grabs the eye and helps the rest of the room look more, well, polished let's say. Just remember these two furniture mistakes: 1) your furniture should never block the pathway through your room and 2) your furniture should never block a source of natural light. It is also worth trying to make the colour of your furniture match the rest of your room as that will also work well in pushing the walls back a couple of feet.
Drop It Low
One of the easiest ways to raise the height of your ceilings and create the illusion of there being a vast amount of space is to use furniture that’s lower to the ground. The space left below furniture is almost always wasted space - sofas, chairs, beds, tables etc. - whereas the space above it all makes a room feel bigger. So, if you are trying to make your bedroom feel that much bigger, then you should try using a loft bed or, better yet, have a mattress on the floor, perhaps with a bamboo mat below it, or even some old pallets. If you are stuck wondering how to make your living room roomier, then your best bet is to locate the kind of furniture you would have found in the 50’s and 60’s, the kind that barely hovers above the floor. Whatever you decide, remember to keep it low.
Legs On Show
Not all furniture can be kept low to the ground (unless you fancy living in a yurt and sitting on the ground to enjoy each and every one of your meals). That is where having streamlined furniture can really help you create that sense of space and openness. This is because light can flood below the furniture as well as above it, as can your eyes. It is a great way to use space without eating it up. This means having a dining room table where the table top isn’t excessively thick and legs that aren’t excessively wide. The same rule goes for the chairs. Of course, you could once again dip into the furniture of 1950’s and 60’s design, a lot of which embraced low and leggy as a sort of unwritten rule, such as the now infamous butterfly chair.
Walls Wasted On Heating
No so long ago, we all had to just accept that one-third of most walls were going to be taken up by horribly distasteful radiators. However, this is no longer the case and is something you should look at changing up immediately for the simple fact they can make a room feel a lot smaller than needed. The best way to get around this is to use the kind of underfloor heating Stelpro services and offers. This way you will get all the comfort needed without wasting any of the space. Of course, another option available to you is vertical radiators, which will help make your ceilings look higher. What’s more, the metallic style vertical radiators can actually double up as rather attractive feature pieces too, making it a win-win on the design front.
Mirror, Mirror On The Wall
We couldn’t write a blog about how to make your home feel bigger and not include the magic offered by a well-placed mirror, which is one of the most effective and efficient ways of creating a much greater sense of openness. The way a mirror works in interior design is they reflect the light in such a way that they trick the eye into thinking there is so much more space. Get this right and it isn’t just the light that gets reflected, but the view as well, and that is what really makes a room feel bigger. Just remember, it doesn’t have to be a floor to ceiling size mirror placed opposite a window. It can be a mirrored tabletop or mirror fronted cabinet that works wonders too. Just make sure you are creating a perception of more space and not more clutter, otherwise, you are really defeating the object.
Light Paint Only
If you really want to open a room up, then you will want to use light colors on your walls. We’re talking about white, cream, magnolia, or even uninterrupted schemes of light grey, pale yellow, mint or even pale blue, all of which have wonderful light-reflecting abilities that will help make your rooms feel ten times bigger. Yes, dark walls can add a striking element to your space, but because they absorb the light instead of reflecting it, they only work to make a wall feel that much smaller. The same goes with large pieces of art for that matter. If you are genuinely concerned about the size of a room, then don’t use oversized pieces of art that will simply swallow the light.
Art Can Be Awesome
We mentioned art above and so we should really delve into a bit more. The main rule to remember on this front is size matters. What we mean is, it is far more effective to have one oversized or large piece of art on a wall that it is to have lots of little pieces. The bigger the art the bigger the wall will look. Another little trick we’ve learned is that art should always be hung at eye height; that way you are leaving a substantial amount of room above your piece that will, once again, make your ceilings feel taller and your space feel bigger. The other thing a big piece of art does is add drama. It can bring a small space to life in that sense, whilst making your space feel bigger in the process. Of course, too many large pieces will have the adverse effect and start to make your walls feel cluttered and your space small, so make sure you stick to just one or two walls in a room.
Fantastic Flooring Advice
When you walk into a room, most of the time the flooring will either run vertically or horizontally and that is that. But by having your flooring run diagonally across a room you are creating an illusion of grandeur, which is exactly what you are after. It doesn’t matter if it is wooden floorboards, stone, tiles or laminate; the rule never changes because the effect never changes. Another trick that can add some serious space to your home is to use the same flooring throughout so that a seamless transition links your rooms together. Don’t be afraid to use a dark wood for your flooring either. This may sound counterproductive, but if a dark finish is paired with light walls, bright accents and airy trims then it will make your space feel noticeably more spacious.
Doors Matter Too
Most doors work on hinges, which means when they are opened - and left open - they are taking up a fair chunk of floor space. A great way to get around this little fact is to use pocket doors. This is because pocket doors run along a track instead of swinging on hinges, meaning they take up a lot less floor space. Either they can slide in and meet at the middle or you can have a door that slides into a wall, making it almost entirely hidden until you want to close of a certain room. It’s a small thing but the smallest things in life tend to make the biggest differences.
Like we have said at least twice now, perception is reality. A little bit of design trickery is all it takes to establish a space that feels much-much bigger. No extensions, no knocking down walls or adding Velux windows; just a bit of creative thinking.