Optimize your home
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- Published: 13 May 2016 13 May 2016
Does your rental’s bedroom feel a little too small? Don’t worry; enlarge it, no wall removal necessary! Small adjustments and decorative tricks can create a feeling of space, producing an optical effect which adds a few virtual m2 to your space. Play with colour, light and furniture… you’ll see, the room will appear more spacious and your travellers will feel the difference. Here are 6 tips to visually enlarge a bedroom.
- © Ikea. Successful bedroom layout with a spacious atmosphere: un-cluttered, selected accessories, pastel walls, light flooring, long cabinets (low-to-the-ground and on legs), multiple lighting sources, clear window sills, large mirror.
Tip # 1: Clear it out
It's a fact: a cluttered room feels smaller and over-accumulation clogs up space. Based on this alone, clean out your room, organize it, get rid of the superfluous and keep only what is necessary. Carefully select a few trinkets, paintings, frames ... ones that you will use immediately and put the rest in storage. You can open it again when you feel like changing things up!
Tip # 2: Focus on light colours
Colour choice is essential to creating the illusion of space in small rooms. Stick to lighter shades as they brighten up the room and create perspective. Whites (off-white, linen-white, cream, sand), beiges and pastels (powder pink, light blue, light green) all work very well. Note that it is preferable to using a lower tone for the ceiling, mouldings and floors. This will accentuate the sensation of space and make the ceiling appear higher than it actually is. Stripes can also manipulate our sense of perspective. When horizontal, they lengthen the room and used vertically, they amplify the sensation of height. Finally, if you have a soft spot for dark colours, you can create depth by painting one wall dark (the one that you want to make seem further away). Finally, keep in mind that satin or gloss finishes reflect more light than a matte finish.
Tip # 3: Opt for low-to-the-ground furniture
Low furniture clears out our field of vision and opens up the space. In small rooms, avoid imposing cabinets, high shelves and XXL carpets; keep the walls and floors as bare as possible. Rather than saturating your space with many small furniture, select minimal pieces that accentuate the space; shallow, long and low to the ground. Dressers and consoles are well suited to bedrooms. Similarly, give preference to furniture with doors rather than fixtures with open shelving, or even better; hanging furniture or cabinets on legs, all of which will give the room a more airy feel. Vis-à-vis cabinets, opt for sliding doors as these require less space than swinging doors. Light colours are also a great option. In a similar thread you can go as far as painting your furniture the same colour as your walls (especially closet doors) as way to make them blend in a little more.
Tip # 4: Choosing the right lighting
To restore volume to a poorly proportioned room, playing with light is a good option. Mounted lights, suspensions, bed-side lamps ... By varying the light sources at different spots throughout the room, you can visually enlarge a space. To further accentuate this space-enhancing effect, use lights that illuminate upwards or even LED strips on the floor.
Tip # 5: Keep window-space clear
The more natural light entering the room, the larger it will feel. With this in mind, it’s important not to block off the windows. Avoid heavy curtains and thick velvet drapes. Instead, install a lighter coloured cotton or linen voile which will filter in the natural sunlight.
Tip # 6: Use mirrors
Positioned in the right place, mirrors can visually increase the feeling of space in a small room. When positioned opposite a window, mirrors reflect light. When positioned opposite a wall they reflect the room interior, and when placed opposite another mirror they create a sense of infinite space. Any which way, mirrors are great, so don’t hesitate to use XXL ones as they will add volumes to your space.
- Thanks to a simple layout, the room appears much larger. ©Andie Powers, via Apartment Therapy