Small rooms can be one of the most challenging areas in your home to decorate. If you’re struggling to decorate a small room then you are not alone. I frequently get asked ‘How do you make a small room look bigger?’ which is the reason I am sharing my top tips for how to make a small room look bigger.

In this post we’ll focus on using colour to make a small room look bigger.

You’ll learn what colours make a small room look bigger, the tips and tricks for easy selection, answers to some common questions about paint colour for small rooms and choosing colour for trims and ceilings.

Colour can make a big difference to the feel of the room, especially in a small space. With a bit of designer know-how, you can easily create the illusion of space in a small room.

Let’s start with what colours make a small room look bigger.

Here’s my five top tips for choosing the best paint colours for a small room

1. Light colours make a room look bigger and brighter

Light colours reflect light and make a space feel more open. When choosing colour for a small room you will need to consider how natural light affects the room.

Knowing the orientation of your room will help you to choose the best colour for a small room. You can read more on this here.

When we think light paint colours, many of us think white or neutrals. If you need help choosing a white paint for your small room, I’ve written a whole blog post on Everything you need to know about white paint to make you the white-pro expert. If you haven’t read it yet, take a look here.

Not a fan of white?

Choose a light paint colour or add some drama to your small room.

Grey – warmer greys with a touch of beige, keep spaces light and bright without the cool sensation of more traditional greys.

Soft Pink – One of my all-time favourite colours, touches of pink add warmth. You may not want to use it on all walls and choose to highlight architectural features or to add interest, however its worth remembering that in a small room it does work really well when all walls are the same colour. If you’re not a real fan of girlie pink you could try something with a bit more yellow in it like Dulux Pinkham.

Soft Blue – Blues are perfect for bedrooms if you want a hint of colour. I have a friend who loves aqua, she finds it calming, might have something to do with her love of the ocean. Soft blue is the perfect colour to recede into the background without dominating the space. Paired with light colour timbers and natural textures, blues make for a perfect small room Queensland style. Get started with crisp white walls, add a feature wall in Dulux Blue Bayou and some timber accents in your décor for an effortless interior.

Black and White – always a chic look in any style of interior, black and white suits modern or traditional homes. All white walls with details and accessories in black lends a contemporary edge and punctuates a room with style. Use matte black for patina, high gloss, glass or ceramic for a bit of glam.

How to make a small room look bigger - Bella Vie Interior Designers
Design by Bella Vie Interiors

2. Experiment with colour

Small rooms are great for experimenting with colour. If you love the idea of using colour in your home and want to experiment with bright or bold colours a small room can be a great place to do this.

​Darker colours make a room feel more cosy, which may be perfect if you are looking for small bedroom ideas or the best colour to paint a small living room.

Don’t be limited by what is popular, when choosing colours for your home. Use colours that you like, as you are the one that must live with it each day. I am going to reinforce this point, especially when it comes to bold colour choice, do not follow trends. Even if it is not particularly fashionable at the time it doesn’t matter, you could end up being the next trend, but at the end of the day you are the one that lives in your home. Choose a paint colour you love!

With the right colour scheme, you can make a small room feel amazing. You can make it feel as spacious and roomy as the real thing or as cosy and intimate as you want.

3. Choose a paint finish to reflect light

Now that you have an idea of paint colour, consider the paint finish. The sheen level of a paint has a significant effect on the overall appearance of a paint colour.

Matt paint is great for ceilings. It doesn’t reflect light well and is harder to wipe clean.

Low sheen, satin or eggshell finish are better wash and wear paint products and the more sheen, the more light-reflective.

Semi-gloss will reflect light well and are much easier to keep clean, however they do tend to show imperfections in your wall surface and this must be considered before you make a final selection on the paint finish you select for your small room.

What colours reflect the most light?

Lighter, brighter colours can create the illusion of space in a smaller room, while using dark colours can absorb light in the room making it seem more cosy.

4. Paint your ceiling and trims lighter

The colour of the ceiling will affect the look of any room.

What colour should I paint my ceiling in a small room?

Painting the ceiling with the same hue as the walls can help to erase shadow lines making it harder for your eye to tell where the room’s parameters start and end, so the room looks larger.

Alternatively, white is a great choice for a ceiling as it adds the illusion of height in a room.

Painting trims in a lighter colour than your walls will help to make the walls appear farther back, making your room seem bigger. Try painting trims a few shades lighter or from the same colour family for a tonal colour scheme.

Painting trims in a bright white paint helps to reflect light in the room giving a sense of openness.

Remember to plan your colours based on how rooms lead into one another for a cohesive look throughout your home.

5. Aim for simplicity

If you really want to know how to make a small room look bigger, then this tip is a must. Aim for simplicity in decorating whether you choose a light or dark paint colour for your small room.

Choosing wall paint and furniture from the same colour family creates a simplicity that keeps the room looking more open with little distraction. Too many colours in a small space can leave it looking confused and busy.

Follow these five tips when choosing paint colour for a small room in your house. Looking for small room ideas for a small bathrooms or small laundry, then check out…

How to make a small room look bigger - Bella Vie Interior Design Brisbane
Design by Bella Vie Interiors

​Want to be a White Paint-pro?

Is choosing white paint doing your head in? I have six go-to white paints. If you know these, choosing white paint for your home is easy!

In this guide I share my favourite white paint colours, the ones I always use, and how to pick the best white paint colour for your home.

Getting Ready for a New Design or Renovation Project?

A new home design or renovation is not something you do on a whim, it requires planning.

Whether you are renovating a bedroom or a whole house there’s a few essential steps that will help as you embark on this exciting and ​sometimes daunting journey.

My 6 Top Tips for Planning Your Home Renovation

  1. ​Do your Homework & Define your Scope
  2. Know your Budget
  3. Know your Limitations
  4. Hire Experts
  5. Have a Plan Open & Honest Communication

Need More Information?

If you have any questions or would like help with your building or renovation projects, feel free to contact us for a no obligation discussion.

We help busy families and individuals achieve their ideal version of luxury living, blending it seamlessly with practicality to suit their lifestyle perfectly.

If you are building or renovating, we’d love to hear from you to discuss creating a beautiful interior that fits your dream of luxury living.

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Check out our
6 Essential Tips to consider
before you renovate.

bella vie logo


Check out our
6 Essential Tips to consider
before you renovate.