Making a Small Living Space Seem Larger

There’s plenty to like about smaller living spaces. They’re far simpler to decorate, easier to organize, and less of chore to keep clean. But smaller spaces can feel less airy and more confining.

Plenty of us in our seasoned years live in smallish quarters. Some have “downsized” because we no longer want a lot of extra space and enjoy living in a cozy, intimate setting. Some are dealing with fixed incomes that limit our options.

There are a variety of design concepts that can fool the eye and make smaller spaces appear more spacious than they are.

A few creative ideas…

  • Use reflections. Mirrors can almost magically make a room appear larger by reflecting light and space. Try hanging a large framed mirror on one wall or even leaning it against the wall to create a more open, airy impression.

  • Stay neutral. Light, neutral colors on walls can help create the illusion of more space. Lighter colors tend to reflect light, while darker colors tend to absorb it. Light colored countertops in kitchens and bathrooms make surfaces seem more expansive.

  • Avoid contrast. Walls, furniture, and rugs in similar colors can create a more open feeling of continuity while contrasting colors can break up space and make an area feel more confined.

  • Stay simple. Less furniture and accessories in a room can help you avoid the cluttered, crowded feeling that so often make smaller spaces feel even smaller.

  • Let there be light. Well-lit rooms always look larger. Light is key to opening up a smaller space, whether the light is natural or artificial. Having a few lighting sources in a smaller room can help create the impression of more space. When it comes to window treatments, sheer fabrics allow light into a room while heavy draperies block light.

  • Table tops matter. A table topped with glass can add to the visual space of a room. A mirrored tabletop can do the same thing.

  • Open up. An open entryway into a room makes the room feel larger and less confined or cramped. To give a small room a more open feel, furniture should not block entryways.

Let's make the most of aging

Join the FUN. Learn more about our Membership Club!