How exactly does one experience big living in a small living space? Unless you live in a Hollywood mansion, chances are your dwelling space is pretty constrained, leaving very little room for a luxuriously spacious living room. However, some clever tips and optical tricks can actually make your living room area seem much vaster than it really is.
For starters, if you’ve had the notion that moving furniture against the walls or towards the edges of your room creates open space in the middle, but this has the effect of killing warmth instead! Without a focal point or clusters of delineated space, the room lacks an enticing pull or a cozy ambience.
Color your world
Firstly, make a huge impact by painting walls and ceilings a ‘cool’ color. These are colors with a blue or green base, instead of those with a red/yellow base.
• Warm colors – all shades of yellow, terracotta, bronze, chocolate brown, gold
• Cool colors – silver, sky blue, mint green, lavender
One trick designers use to magnify a limited space is painting the ceiling a lighter color than the walls. You can also experiment with various shades of blue or green based tones as long as you stick within the same color family; or, you could combine matte and glossy finishes of the same paint shade for tres chic walls. For instance, trimmings around doors and windows could be glossy while the surrounding walls could be kept matte.
Why let your curtains stop at the top of your windows? To give your room a major height boost, move curtains or other window treatments to that they appear to be dangling from the ceiling, and let excess fabric pool around the ground for instant elegance.
With the similar rationalization, let curtain rods extend beyond the edge not only let more illumination into the room, but also draw your line of sight outward. Your eyes are the windows to your soul, and your windows are the eyes to your room. Covering your windows only tightens up your living space.
Bigger is better
If you’re talking screens, picture frames, or other ornamental pieces, go large because these oversize pieces make such a modern decorative statement. Besides making the room look larger, they create a focal point for the room and can actually update its look without adding unnecessary clutter.
Delineate and magnify
Long, lean stripes should be your optical illusion of choice to enlarge your living space! A striped rug on the floor elongates the floor area, while stripes on the wall can add a sense of height to the room.
Arrange furniture in clusters to demarcate precise seating and socializing areas
Tall furniture not only offers you loads of roomy storage, but also visibly adds height and elevation to your living space. However, make sure that the tall pieces blend into the room’s décor without overwhelming the other furnishing in the room.
Scale it to size
Keep all furniture sizes proportionate to one another, so that one does not overwhelm the others. Instead of letting one couch take up the entire wall of one room, replace it with a narrower piece that frees up valuable space without compromising any seating area.
If you must keep your large item, then colorful or accent pieces will help it form dominating your small space. Make the largest item the focal point of the room around which smaller furniture should be arranged, though do avoid using many miniscule pieces as this effectively creates a sense of clutter and confusion.
Declutter the room by squirreling away all visible piles of CDs, magazines or other forms of mess and disorder. Using see-through storage devices which stack up easily not only save space and add convenience, but don’t ‘cut off’ the space in the room by blocking your line of sight.
When properly used, mirrors can really open up the space in a room without overwhelming it. Their basic task is to reflect all existing space and also reflect light into the room, making it look ever the more expansive and cheerful. Your best bet would be to place mirrors in areas where they can reflect light or light-colored walls.
If the main purpose of your living room is to watch television, play on your game console, converse with friends, or read, and then arrange your furniture in a manner that fits this purpose! Keep your furnishings organized in a way that best accents the main endeavor of the room. Also keep in mind that you should not have furniture arrangements which block the ‘traffic flow’ within the room.
Remember: even though your floor space might be limited, your walls and your imagination sure aren’t! Do remember to:
• Use light colors
• dress up your walls
• make the most of vertical space
• let the light in and reflect it
• keep your proportions right
• stowaway clutter
• create cozy niches
Most importantly though, big or small, you should enjoy spending time in your living room! As long as it creates a welcoming, soothing personal space, don’t be afraid of experimenting with themes, colors or proportions.