Designing your small space can be a challenge – it has to function but also (of course) look good. Here are 5 tips to making your small space look larger than it is.

Purge and Organize

We all accumulate ‘things’ overtime. It’s the accumulation of these things that can make a room look smaller than it actually is – Clutter is distracting to the eye and makes the space seem inadequate.

Go through the space and purge anything that doesn’t belong in the room; that hasn’t been used in at least a year; that is expired (we all have those items) and anything that you just don’t need anymore. 1-800-GOT-JUNK? is a great tool for getting rid of those larger, hard to move items.* They do all the work! Use the link below for a discount on your next pickup and get rid of that clutter!

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Once you have gotten rid of the unnecessary, organize what’s left. Everything should have a home. If it doesn’t, it doesn’t belong in this room. Use drawer organizers, decorative boxes or bins to help keep you organized. Ikea is a great place to find fun, decorative, small storage solutions.

Keep it light

General rule: when you have a small space, you’ll want to use white or light colors especially on the walls. This will make the room feel open and clean. Use accessories (accent pillows, curtains, rugs etc) to ground the space and give it some character. 

You can still have some fun with color. If you are dealing with a long, narrow room try painting the shorter walls a darker color. To the eye, this will make these walls appear closer, giving the room some proportion. The same affect can be achieved with wallpaper.

For more information on the power of color, check out our Color Mood blog.

Find the *Star*

So now you have a uncluttered, white/light colored room. Kind of boring right? You need a star element; something that will ground the room and set the style of the room. This could be a chandelier, a piece of art, a focal wall (wood planking, wall paper or a wall painted a bold color) …

When everything around this star piece is simple and clean, the eye is drawn to it. When the eye is drawn to one thing, the size of the room becomes less noticeable. Just be sure to pick a star that is size appropriate.

Use size appropriate items

The most common mistake people make in small spaces is their furniture. That big, oversize sectional that touches all corners of the room might be comfortable, but it is making your space look so much smaller than it is. When choosing furniture for your small space, pick items that are shorter with a thinner profile – thin arms or armless chairs and couches for example.

Just because you have a smaller couch doesn’t mean you will have less seating. A proportional couch will give you space to add a love seat or a couple of chairs. This will help make the space feel bigger by creating conversational seating.

Mirrors and glass

Mirrors reflect an image back and it is because of this that they are a great way to make the room appear bigger than it actually is. Try using a mirror across from a window. It will reflect more natural light and the image of the outdoors – making it seem like the room goes on.

Glass is another eye illusion item. Think about those pets that have walked into a closed glass door thinking it was open…. Glass almost disappears into the background which makes it a great hard surface for small spaces. Try using glass railings on your staircase instead of wood spindles or drywall. Instead of dividing the two spaces, it becomes one much larger space.

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