How to Use Lighting to Make a Small Room Feel Bigger

There are many interior design tricks to make a small room look larger, from optical illusions to clever storage. Careful lighting can also fool the eye. Here are some of the best tips.

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1. Spread the Light

Don’t have just one central overhead light source. Instead, employ numerous light sources such as table and floor lamps. This way you control the mood and open up the room’s corners.

2. Use Wall Lights

Designer wall lights work well in corners and recesses. For example, lights on either side of the chimney breast can widen a room.

3. Use Long Pendants

If your room has a high ceiling, emphasizing the vertical with tall shelves or furniture creates an illusion of space. Try a long pendant suspended from the ceiling to showcase the room’s height.

If you are looking for downlight covers to insulate and protect the light fitting, you may like Thermahood Direct downlight covers.

The New York Times has a simple guide to lighting a room:

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4. Neutral Lampshades

Colour schemes designed to create more space in a room tend to be based on light wooden floors, white drapes and pale furnishings. You will probably want to choose matching neutral lampshades, which could be made of linen or silk.

5. Use a Mirror

Mirrors are well known for creating an illusion of space. Typically you would put a big mirror facing a window, but if natural light isn’t available, a similar effect can be had by placing your mirrors opposite the wall lights.

A floor-to-ceiling mirror behind a piece of furniture creates the illusion of an entire other room unfolding behind it.

6. Use Square Shades

If you want to squeeze a lamp on to a slender mantelpiece, a narrow table or an awkward shelf, try employing a square lampshade. You can push these up against a wall, saving space.

7. Dazzling Glass

A great interior design trick is to use translucent furniture such as glass tables to remove visual barriers and open up the room. But glass in the lighting can also work well. Table lamps with a glass base can be found, while a hand-blown glass coloured wall light brings a dash of pigment to the wall, especially in a largely white colour scheme.

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