7 Tips for Making a Room Feel Bigger/More Open
Everyone wants to have the large expansive room that seems to go on forever. The open space brings a peace and calm to our minds; plus, it’s beautiful! The way a room is organized and decorated can make it feel welcoming or closed off. Use all of the techniques to create a wide open room that everyone can enjoy.
- Light Colors: The colors that we choose to put in spaces make our brains interpret the space differently. Red increases hunger and stimulates the mind and body, while blues and greens calm and bring tranquility. Each has its place in a home. That’s why red and other warm colors are often found in kitchens and offices, while Blues, greens, and other cool colors are found in bathrooms and bedrooms. The saturation of the color is also important. A dark or vibrant colors can bring stimulation, while soft, and pastel colors can calm. To give the illusion of space, choose lighter colors in softer palettes to open up the space. This doesn’t mean you have to give up all dark colors–just use those as your accents.
- No Busy Patterns: Busy patterns distract our eyes and clutter our minds. When you can see everything in the room clearly because patterns are hitting patterns, our brain becomes overwhelmed. Too much of a good thing can be a bad thing. Have a pattern, but choose only one, and have the other items in the room compliment it in color and style. Choosing one statement piece out of each room will help you give a direction to decorate and determine your style. The room will look cohesive and expertly designed.
- Hang Closer to the Ceiling: The further you can draw the eyes, the better. Take everything up by hanging pictures, curtains, and shelving closer to the ceiling. It will fool the eye into believing that the space is larger than it actually is. Plus, it helps you take advantage of more usable space for storage and decoration. My personal favorite is hanging a floating shelf next to the ceiling, which is perfect for storing all of your books.
- The “Cantaloupe” Rule: Small knick knacks crowded on tables and shelves can make the room look cluttered. Stick to the cantaloupe rule by only displaying things that are the size of a cantaloupe or larger. Your eye will be able to easily see everything in the room, making you believe that there is space to see everything.
- Glass/Mirrors: The classic trick of the illusion of space is mirrors. Glass and mirrors reflect light, and make your mind see space where it isn’t. It’s one of the oldest tricks in the book, but it works wonders, which is why it’s still around.
- Organizers/Hidden Storage: We still have all of our knick knacks, but we need a place to neatly keep them. This is where organizing drawers and hidden storage spaces come in handy. Ottomans that open up are perfect for storing magazines and stray cords, while desk organizers take all of the little parts and pieces and neatly keep them in one place. Moving the distracting clutter will make you more productive.
- Ditch Overhead Lighting: Harsh overhead lighting can distract you from the beautiful things in the room. Opt for decorative floor lighting and table lamps, that make the space seem intimate and alive. Also, open the blinds and let the sun pour in. Nothing can beat natural light.
The first steps to making your room appear larger is to organize and remove the clutter. Take away everything that is smaller than a cantaloupe and give it a new home in a desk or storage space. Then, find new lighting, and hang mirrors. Last, but not least, change up the color palette for the most dramatic change. You’ll be amazed at what a designer space you’re able to create with these simple design hacks!