How to Use Light to Make a Small Space Look Big

How to Use Light to Make a Small Space Look Big

Strategically placed lighting can create the illusion of a larger space. If your room looks more like a closet than a family room, here are a few ways to make the space seem larger without the hassle and expense of a major construction overhaul.

Recessed Lights- In a small room, where floor space can be a precious commodity, floor lamps will not suffice. Large light fixtures hanging from the ceiling can break up the room and make it seem smaller – an advantage in open living areas, but quite the opposite in an already tight space. Low-profile recessed lights solve this problem by creating a clean line of sight that can shine bright for tasks or be dimmed for a family movie night.

Track LightsTrack lights take up much less visual space than traditional fixtures but can still make a decorative statement in the home. Each individual light on the track can be adjusted to bounce off of walls and ceilings or lighten up a shadowed corner. When you combine the flexibility of track lighting with the low profile of recessed lighting, every corner of a room is brightly lit without compromising space or style.

Michael Knowles, Architect

Natural Light Sources — Capitalize on every bit of natural light by keeping windows as exposed as possible. Heavy drapes and dark curtains can take away from this valuable light source. Skylights are a wonderful solution to a poorly lit space but are substantially more expensive when you start involving structural work. A more cost-effective alternative are solar light tubes, sometimes called sun tunnels. The metal tubes capture light at the roof and reflect it into the home. Look at the difference they make in this entryway:

Lindus Construction/Midwest LeafGuard

Colors & Accessories — After you’ve put your perfect lighting strategy into place, expand on it with bright colors and artfully placed accessories. A large, strategically positioned mirror makes the space seem wider and longer and reflects light back into the room. When considering paint choices, using light blues, greens, light grays and neutrals are recommended to create a bright and airy feel.

Whether your layout is cozy or spread-out, having a strategic lighting plan is a crucial part of home design.

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