How to Make a Small Room Look Bigger

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Create the appearance of more space in a tiny room with these interior decorator tips and tricks.

You Will Need

Colorful paint Big furniture Two mirrors Complementary furnishings Sheer curtains Subway or glass tile

Step 1: Use vibrant paint. Contrary to popular belief, white doesn't make a room look larger; deeper colors do by making corners disappear. If you want to use a light color, give the space an accent wall in a darker shade; it elongates the room by making the wall appear to recede.

Tips: If you have carpeting, paint the baseboards the same color.

Step 2: Avoid small furniture. It may seem counterintuitive, but a few oversized pieces work better in a modestly-sized room than a lot of tiny furnishings, which just make a room look cluttered.

Step 3: Place mirrors on walls across from each other to produce the illusion of a room that goes on and on.

Tips: Choose mirrors with thick glass, which better reflects dimension.

Step 4: Choose furnishings in shades that complement each other. Having a lot of competing colors and patterns makes a room look smaller.

Step 5: Use sheer curtains that can be pulled completely away from the windows during the day; dark rooms look smaller. Hang the curtain rod near the ceiling, and have it extend past the sides of the window; this gives the illusion of a larger window, and therefore a larger room.

Step 6: In small kitchens and bathrooms, use subway tile - 3- by 6-inch ceramic tiles -- to add depth, or glass tile, which reflects light.

Did you know? Japan invented the capsule hotel concept, which offer rooms as small as 75 square feet.