How to Make Your Living Room Look Bigger
1. Use plenty of light colors. You’ve probably read that painting your walls white or another light shade (like soft gray or subtle taupe) can help a room look bigger, and that’s definitely true. But you can make this effect even more powerful by using similarly airy shades for other furnishings as well.
The living room shown here includes a white rug, white sofa, white media unit and white coffee table (among other things), which together help create a seamless and breezy look.
This method doesn’t have to be as impractical as it might sound. Seating with removable covers, hard surfaces in white (such as white laminate media units or marble-topped tables) and hardy natural fiber rugs in pale shades will give you a light color scheme that doesn’t feel impossible to keep clean.
In general, choosing some major furnishings in a pale shade similar to the wall will help avoid breaking up the living room, but you don’t have to choose everything in white to benefit from this effect.
2. Include hits of dramatic black. Just because you’re using a lot of light colors doesn’t mean you can’t add a little drama. Introduce small elements of black to give your living room a strong sense of contrast and therefore interest. Black-and-white patterns especially add just the right hint of black to energize a small room without shrinking it, as do black-and-white photos or art pieces.
Adding some contrast actually creates an interplay of depths, with different pieces advancing and receding, and this can trick your eye into seeing the room as a bit bigger.
8. Use a generous area rug. Area rugs can be great for defining a specific zone as separate from its surroundings, such as anchoring a seating group in an open-concept space. However, to make a small living room look bigger, you don’t want to break it up but rather highlight a long stretch of floor.
Use a generous rug that comes close to the borders of the room to add richness and draw the eye in different directions.
9. Make use of large mirrors. Adding mirrors can seriously fool the eye into thinking the room is twice as large, especially if you use one big enough to appear almost like a door or window into another space. Look to floor mirrors, oversize wall mirrors or even stretches of mirror tile to create the illusion to maximum effect.
10. Use barely there tables. In a small space you can only eliminate so much furniture. After all, what use is a living room with nowhere to sit?
But one place you can reduce your bulky furniture is the coffee table. Use a leggy table to make the living room look bigger and allow you to stretch your legs a bit more, which help the room feel bigger too.