When it comes to improving your home, one of the best things that you can invest in is making it feel lighter and brighter. Not only will a light, airy space feel larger than it really is, but, as we go into the duller winter months, you’ll be grateful for all the natural light you can get in. Perhaps you want to make the most of a new home, get your old home ready to sell or you just want to maximise the potential of your current space. Whatever you’re looking for from your home, we guarantee that making it feel lighter and more spacious is something you’ll never regret!
We’ve lived in a variety of homes of all shapes and sizes; from flats to houses and modern through to those needing a full refurb. Each time we’ve used some of these tricks in order to create a bright and light living space that feels both airy and inviting at the same time. Here are some of our favourite tricks…
Step Up Your Stair Game
Staircases take up a huge amount of room and can drastically affect the look and feel of a home. If your stairs take over the space or block light from coming in, why not try swapping your traditional staircase to something like these kite winder stairs from https://uk.fontanotshop.com. Not only do they hug in to the edge of a space, perfect for tight hallways or staircases that run along the edge of a room, but they’re also an open tread style. Traditional staircases usually have a closed tread which means that the upright element of each stair is solid as well as the horizontal piece that you step on. With an open tread, light can pass through the stairs, helping to make the area lighter and reduce the space impact that the staircase has on the room. These work particularly well if your staircase is blocking light either into or out of the hallway/room as well as helping them to blend into the background if you have them in a main living area. Either way – a very viable alternative that adds to the feeling of space!
Go With The Flow
Where possible, try to open up your rooms to create larger living zones and a simpler flow for both light and movement. Open plan living is popular for this very reason but we know that it’s not always feasible to have one large living space! If you can’t knock through rooms, why not consider getting creative? Our favourite way to manage this has been to widen standard doorways and replace them with internal french double doors. This allows light through whilst also retaining the ability to ‘shut down’ the room in the cooler months of the year to create a cosy zone. If you don’t have the space to widen doorways, how about adding an internal window or two. We’ve seen dark rooms transformed by adding port-hole style windows into other rooms to allow more light in – think less of a 1960’s wall hatch and more of a modern, sleek vibe.
If you’re working with multiple rooms and can’t open them up, can you incorporate similar colour schemes and flooring between them in order that they feel like one large space? Whilst you shouldn’t be afraid to ‘zone’ your living spaces with rugs and furniture, maintaining consistent elements of decor can really make multiple rooms feel like one combined living space. It also makes it really easy to touch up paint in future!
Mirror, Mirror On The Wall
It’s an age old trick but it’s a good one. You can create a sense of additional space in a room by adding mirrors in key places. Not only do they make a room feel larger due to reflecting back space, but placed strategically they can catch light and bounce more of it into the room. Get a feel for where the natural light hits the room and look to place your mirror either in that spot or opposite it (thus catching the reflection). If you don’t get natural light, try and place a mirror in the place where your eyes are naturally drawn to as you enter the room, this makes it feel larger from the moment you walk in.
Clear Your Surroundings
It may sound simple but having a good sort out of any green space around you can have a massive impact on the light levels coming into your house. Remember that in the winter months, the sun is lower and because of this surrounding hedges and plants can easily reduce the light levels into your home. Make sure you keep hedges cut back and plants pruned to reduce this. Got a large tree nearby? Consider getting it assessed in order that it can be cut back to allow light through – this can also be healthy for the tree, particularly as we go into the winter months with more storms. A well kept tree is less likely to act like a sail (you want wind to go through it easily in order to reduce the risk of it blowing down!) and old/damaged boughs can be removed before they’re brought down in bad weather.
Storage, Storage, Storage
Want to make any home feel larger? You need good storage. There’s a big difference between having things out for decor purposes and having clutter around. Too many piles and boxes can quickly make any home feel small, which is why it’s always worth investing in good storage. There are plenty of ways to get smart with how you store things, starting with the obvious; don’t store what you don’t need! A good sort out is 100% worth the stress of doing it (says the woman that desperately needs to do a toy clear out!). Once you’ve got it down, think about all of the places you could store things but don’t – could your next armchairs and sofas be ones that incorporate under-seat storage? Could you turn your under stairs cupboard into a better designed pull out shelving/drawer system to maximise the space? How about beds with storage under them?