Monday, June 13, 2011

How To Make Your Small House Feel Larger

Good morning, it seems that I have internet again YAAAY! This should make posting a much easier process. I hope I didn't lose you in my absence. One of the things that people comment on the most when entering our home is how large it feels for being so small. We currently have about 1,900sf and after the garage is converted will have 2,400sf total. Here are some of my tips for making your home feel more grande when it isn't:

1) Assess your space and see if there are any structural changes that can help you. For us that was taking out interior walls seen below:
During Work

2) Be sure to work with a color palette that stays consistent throughout. For us this meant working with light paint colors which is a great trick to enlarge a small space, and we anchored with black accents. The best results can be achieved by working with colors in the same families and mixing things up with textures and layers. For example we hung white curtains on our white walls, included white slip covers on our dinning chairs, used light and white upholstery, and used a very light colored capiz chandelier all of which off sets the dark kitchen and dark furniture. Everything together blends well but has huge impact and interest.

3) Mix up your furniture and display keeping scale in mind. One mistake that I see people make time and time again is that they use small furnishings in a small space and vice versa. The trick is to mix things up and make sure you pay attention to scale i.e. size. If you cram a small space with a bunch of small tables, chairs and nick knacks you are going to make your place feel cluttered and unfinished. We made this work in our space by using larger 24"x24" floor tiles, hung a huge custom photography in our dinning room,  kept our large sofa in the family room and kept our amazing dinning table. We then scaled things back with a smaller sofa in the living room, kept our smaller art hung in groups of 2 or 3, and used shelves as console tables to keep our displays nice and tidy. We hung our curtains as high to the ceiling as possible which made our ceilings feel taller drawing the eyes upward and balanced that by making sure art and displays were hung at the correct height. Use large area rugs to anchor a space by placing furnishings on top of them and stay away from small rugs and small pictures unless done in a cluster. All in all it's about tricking the eyes into seeing more than just your 4 tiny little walls.

4) Use mirrors to visually enlarge a space. We did this by taking 3 huge 24"x72"l mirrors that I found, painted all white and hung in a group of 3 right in our entry way. This reflects the kitchen right when you walk in the door and makes our house feel double it's size.

5) Pay attention to the materials that you use that my block the visual flow. For example with our small wide open space it was important to pay close attention to our lighting which can be seen room by room. You don't want to look like you are trying too hard. I used white pendant lights flush mounted which give great light but blend very nicely. I used clear globe pendant lights in the kitchen which are see through and don't stop the eyes from scanning the room. I also used a very light and ethereal chandelier in the dinning room which blends very nicely. Basically I wanted the lighting to flow and not stop your eyes each time you have to take in the next fixture.

Those are some of our ticks. Share with me what you've done to make your small space feel larger. I would also love to feature you, so if you want to strut it's stuff, let me know!


  1. LOVE how the house looks with the curtains hung! What a difference they make! A-MAZ-ING!!!!!! :)