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Create the Illusion of More Space with Color and Light

Apr 16, 2008
There is nothing less inviting than a tiny, cramped, dark little room in the house or apartment. Obviously, the first thing that needs to be done to make the room more pleasant is to get rid of the clutter. If there is a lot of furniture such as a bed, a couple of night stands and dressers crammed into the space, have a yard sale and replace the furniture with two or three basic units that have hidden storage compartments. This will immediately transform the small room. Once there is some elbow room to move around, color and lighting will go a long way in creating the illusion of more space in a small room.

Sunlight Works Wonders

Get rid of any dark, heavy window curtains. A light window blind or lace curtain will make a tremendous difference. If an outdoor streetlight is a problem and the room needs something heavier to block light at night time, try a white or pastel shade. The shade can roll up during the day to allow more natural light into the room.

Be Cool With Color

Painting a small room in white might help make it seem larger, but white is not the only color that can add depth to a small space. Warm colors have a tendency to make the walls seem closer than they really are, while the cool colors create an illusion that the walls are farther away. Light and 'cool' pastels, particularly those that match or 'flow with' the color scheme of the hallway or other attached space, can also add a sense of spaciousness to a small room. A white ceiling, complimented with a light colored flooring, will add depth.

Examples of cool colors include:

* Blue
* Green
* Violet
* Neutral colors such as white, silver or gray

Examples of warm colors are:

* Red
* Yellow
* Orange

In a larger room, the warm, fire-like colors can add a sense of comfort, but if it is a small room, they will create a sense of confinement.

Direct the Light to Create a Sense of Space

Lighting can be focused to cast shadows or highlight a 'focus point' in the small room. Shadows can add a sense of depth, making the room appear larger. The 'focus point' is something like a beautiful work of art or colorful rug that the eye naturally goes to when entering the room. When a focus point is created, the first impression is about the focus point, not the size of the room.

Portable lamps or accent lighting are flexible so that the lighting can be moved around until the right effect is achieved. Floor lamps, table lamps or torchiers are available in many colors and styles to compliment the interior decorating scheme.

Mirrors are said to create the illusion of more space in a small room, but poor use or placement of the mirrors can defeat the illusion. A large framed mirror may be more helpful than mirroring an entire wall.
About the Author
When furnishing a small room, futons are an excellent alternative to traditional furniture. Since they are flexible and serve dual purposes, you will not only conserve space, but you may save money. Whether it is a faux chest of drawers, a chair set, or sleeper couch, Futon Heaven's Gallery features a huge selection of furnishings and accessories that will give you decorating ideas. Visit http://www.futonheaven.com and take a look around.
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