10 Ways to Make Your Small Space Look Bigger

How to make your compact home look more spacious

Updated on June 30, 2017 10:06 am

Luisa Wong

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Want the illusion of space in your little nook? You don’t have to feel cramped just because you’re living in a compact home. All it takes is a bit of creativity and excitement in finding the right piece, right colour, and right design to make your square footage feel so much bigger.

Here are some sneaky ways to trick yourself (and your guests) into feeling like you’re living in a more spacious abode:

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1. Know which colours to love and which ones to avoid. Light and neutral colours such as white, cream, or grey are great light reflectors and that’s what you want to achieve—a space that feels welcoming, airy, and calm. Use these colours on your walls and floors. If you want to create visual unity, use different shades of the same colours. If you still want a bit of a bright accent, use it in the ceiling to draw the eyes upward, creating the illusion of height. According to Claire Middleton, author of Secrets of Small-House Living, avoid splashing all the walls of a small room with dark colours, unless you want it to feel like a cave.

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2. Keep the space clutter-free. In a small space, the more organized things are, the better. The key is to make your space clutter-free. Stack up small items such as books and your other favourite items in a colour-coordinated way for a more structured, streamlined feel.

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3. Ditch the busy patterns. Having a small place means letting go of certain patterns and sticking only with more coordinated ones because it’s all about creating a more spacious vibe. You can inject a feeling of movement by using vertical and horizontal lines, allowing your eyes to move in a coordinated pattern. Do it by considering striped floors or using a striped rug.

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4. Let the light in. Natural light is your best friend in creating an airy, open feel for your home. Avoid covering your windows and let more light in to give your space more depth. Uncovering your window also allows you to take in the view outside, giving your place a more natural feel. If you want a bit of privacy, just use drapes with sheer and breezy fabrics. When it comes to using lights inside, consider using few smaller lamps instead of an overhead light to allow the eyes to move around and create an illusion of space.

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5. Maximise the magic of mirrors. To reflect more light, you can also place a mirror across the window. Mirrors are the easiest way to create an illusion of a larger space.

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6. Be mindful of your furniture choice. Owning a small space means you can’t just simply cramp it up with the large couch you saw in the shop yesterday or that massive bookshelf on sale. Being extra-wise in choosing furniture will definitely help you save some space. Invest in multi-functional furniture items that serve dual (even triple) purposes but occupy only one space.

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7. Don't be afraid to decorate with bigger furniture or decors. Sure, it makes sense to use small furniture in a small space but it won’t hurt to have one or two big items to make the room appear larger. Just accentuate them with few smaller pieces or build custom items around them. You can also consider furniture items with exposed legs such as raised sofas and armchairs.

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8. Use bold and dramatic art pieces to give your room a more expansive feel. If you want to have framed pieces, consider hanging them on just one or two walls.

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9. Shed a bit of space. Once you’ve carefully chosen your furniture, try putting a bit of space between them to allow for more carefree movement. You can do it by angling the furniture away from the wall with a few inches. This will create the illusion of space.

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10. Leave some empty space on your shelves. Your shelves don’t have to be filled with items, too. Leave some space empty and group items in one corner to create a more dramatic feel.


Got any tips for homeowners? Share with us at hello@cromly.com.

Cover photo courtesy of Home Designing

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