There are lots of well-known interior design tricks for making a small room look bigger – from storage cunningly built into furniture to huge mirrors on the walls or optical illusions like stripy rugs on the floor. But have you thought about the importance of lighting in helping to create a sense of space?
Here are a few Pooky tips for using lights to make your rooms seem large and airy…
1) Spread the light
First and foremost, don’t rely on a single light source in the centre of the room. One ceiling lamp will only cast a pool of light on the middle of the floor. Instead, use multiple light sources around the room to open it up, such as floor lamps in corners and table lamps on sideboards.
This will spread the focus across the full area of the room and give you more control over different moods in the room.
2) Use wall lights to enhance corners and recesses
On the theme of spreading light around, try using designer wall lights in awkward recesses or corners. For example, lighting the spaces on either side of a chimney breast will make the room seem wider.
3) Use long pendants to emphasise the height of a room
One of the most common tricks for making a room seem bigger is to utilise vertical space. If you lack square footage but have a reasonably high ceiling, you can focus attention on this with tall, thin furniture and high shelves – and for your lighting try a long pendant hanging from the ceiling. It will draw the eye up and down, the room’s height rather than its small floor space.
4. Bounce light off a mirror
Mirrors are the oldest trick in the book when it comes to creating the illusion of space. The classic method is to place a large mirror opposite a window, but if you can’t (or don’t want to) rely on natural light, place mirrors opposite your wall lights for a similar effect.
5. Pick the right colour lampshades
Most colour schemes that are designed to make a room feel big and airy are based on light colours: white walls and drapes, light wooden floors and pale furnishings. So in many cases you’ll probably want to go for matching light, neutral lampshades for your floor and table lamps, perhaps made of linen or silk.