Make Your Living Room Look Bigger With These Painting Tips

If you feel like the living room in your home isn't quite big enough, there is plenty of advice available for storing items differently or otherwise making more space for your belongings. Did you know, however, that painting the walls and ceiling a certain way can make a room look bigger? Check out these tips for interior painting that will open up your living room and make it appear larger than it actually is.

Choose Light and Bright

When you pick out colors for the living room, stick with lighter, brighter shades. Darker colors tend to make a room look more cozy and compact, which is great for a large room that needs a homier, cozier look. But when you are starting with a smaller room, however, go with light shades. Icy blue, cream, pale green or a pastel yellow will bring more light into the room, making it appear larger.

While you're making your room lighter with paint color, be sure to bring in as much natural or artificial light as you can. Open shades and curtains to let the sun shine in. Install overhead lighting in the center of the room and set up lamps in any dark corners. In other words, draw attention to the space with the use of light, and that will seem to increase your square footage.

Try Stripes on an Accent Wall

Choosing an accent wall and using a bold pattern on it can make your living room appear larger than it actually is. First, choose the right wall to be the accent. If you were going to use a solid-colored accent wall, you should choose the wall with the focal point on it. This focal point might be a large-screen TV, a fireplace or a slider that leads out to the patio. When using stripes, though, you will want to choose a wall that is relatively clear of architectural or electronic distractions.

Vertical stripes will make a wall appear longer, and horizontal stripes will make it appear taller. Don't be afraid to make the stripes wide and bold; you don't have to stick with small patterns in a small room.

Carry the Color Scheme From Ceiling to Floor

If a room is small, it's a good idea to keep the same color family from ceiling to floor, possibly excluding your accent wall. When the eye sees a continuation from the flooring to the ceiling, it doesn't stop suddenly, and the room appears larger.

Since flooring is probably the feature of the room that is the hardest to change, start with that. If it's dark-colored, try choosing a light shade of the floor color. For example, dark brown wood floors might be accented by light tan walls. If the flooring is light, it will be easier to choose a light shade that complements it. Don't be afraid to paint the ceiling, too! You don't have to stick with plain white (though you can, of course). Try cream or pale yellow or, if you're feeling adventurous, a color that just one or two shades lighter or darker than the paint you choose for the walls.

Painting a small room can be a challenge, as your technique can make or break the way the room looks. If you aren't sure that you can master an accent wall or a bold pattern, don't be afraid to call in a professional interior painter. He or she will be able to get it right; they can also advise you as to what will look the best and most effectively highlight the features of your small living room. Once the room is painted, it just might be the living room of your dreams, and you will be more than happy to enjoy your cozy living space.