10 Simple Tricks to Make Your Bedroom Feel Bigger

10 Simple Tricks to Make Your Bedroom Feel Bigger

Let’s face it—we would all love a big, airy bedroom. But, unless your home already has one, the only way to get more space is to steal square footage from another room or add-on to your home. Both options are costly, disruptive, and, for a lot of other very practical reasons, not an option for most people.

The good news is, you can make the most of the space you have and get the appearance of a larger room with just a little discipline and a few clever decorating tricks. Try one or try all ten to make your bedroom magically feel bigger.

1. Select appropriately scaled furniture.
This should go without saying but avoid putting oversized furniture in your smaller space. This is a common trap that people fall into when accepting secondhand furniture from friends or relatives who are themselves downsizing, or people who are buying furniture with the hopes they’ll move into a larger place in the future.

A good guideline to buy furniture that feels appropriately scaled to your body, i.e. if you feel dwarfed by a dresser in the store, chances are it will feel overwhelmingly large when you get it home. Conversely, if you feel like a giant in a side chair, there’s a good chance it will seem awkwardly small in your space.

2. Pick the right sized bed.

Until the 1950s, twin and double mattresses were the standard, and that should be no surprise to you if you live in a home built before 1960. Even a queen is a snug fit in some older homes, never mind a king.

To pick a bed that comfortably fits your space, follow these three rules: there should be room for the headboard and two normal sized nightstands on the bed wall, you should be able to comfortably walk on all three sides of the bed, and you should have room for clothes storage and sitting/dressing areas. If you have to crawl over your bed to get to the closet or bathroom, it’s too big.

With its classic MCM lines and trendy fabric headboard, the Kamryn upholstered bed, available in queen and king sizes, is a modern interpretation of a classic. The slender, light wood legs and gently tapered profile give this piece a big presence without taking up a lot of space.

BONUS TIP: If the reason you want to upgrade to a larger bed is to sleep better with your partner, consider a motion-isolating mattress. Tempur-Pedic mattresses, for example, envelop each partner in body cradling support so neither one feels the other’s movements. (The couples that we’ve talked to say they’re life-changing!)

3. Choose furniture with legs.
Take your cue from mid-century modern design and “lift” furniture off the floor to give the appearance of more space. Even just one piece of legged furniture can make a big difference—try a modern bedframe with slim legs or a hairpin bedside table to lighten your look.

The Tannaly platform bed, above, stands on gracefully turned legs that both compliment and contrast the more masculine Fayme accent chair and vintage-inspired hairpin table. A large piece of art above the headboard-less frame adds visual height and interest, while the bright white colour scheme of the room and window wall further expands the space.

4. Keep your bedding simple and straightforward.

Think about how much bigger your bedroom looks when you have the bed stripped to change the sheets. Now, we’re not suggesting you sleep on a bare mattress, but choosing simple, tailored bedding will give your room a more spacious feeling.

Lower-loft duvets provide less visual “noise” than their puffy counterparts but will still give you that warm cozy feeling when you turn in for the night. If you can’t bear to part with your big, poofy comforter, consider stashing it in a sleek chest or drawer when not in use and dressing your bed with a sleek, chic coverlet during the day.

5. Take advantage of your vertical space.

Artwork, draperies, furniture, and shelving can be used to draw the eye upward and give the illusion of a bigger room. Look for tall headboards and storage furniture strong vertical lines—this is no time for long, low dressers.

A tall headboard, like the Willowton in whitewashed wood, pulls the eye up towards the ceiling, but don’t stop there. Large artwork over the bed helps to take the illusion even higher. On the dresssers and night stands, vertical lines created by the drawer pulls echo the effect. 

6. Resist the urge to fill ALL the space.

Here’s where that discipline comes in. For this look to work, you have to channel your inner minimalist and fight the temptation to cover every surface and fill in every gap. That isn’t to say you can’t still shop, but once you have things the way you want them, you’ll want to employ the “one in, one out” rule: for every piece of furniture or accessory you bring in, one has to go.

Also, avoid filling in the corners. Large plants, floor lamps, and shelving or display units placed in the corners have a rounding effect on the room, making it appear smaller. Remember, it’s a simple trick of the eye: the more floor and wall that shows, the larger your room will appear.

7. Decorate with a light colour scheme.

We’ve all heard that white will “really open up a space” but you don’t have to go all-white to get the same room-expanding effect. Soft pastels or hazy greys will have the same effect, just so long as they are in the cool family, as warm tones will have the opposite effect.

While you’re painting, switch out your window treatments to match your walls. Keeping one continuous colour for the envelope of the room will keep your eye moving and make the room seem larger. To add visual height to the room, install the rod close to the ceiling and hang curtains that are long enough to reach the floor. Curtains that are too short have the same visual effect as cropped wide pants—if you know, you know.

8. Reflect on this.

Be sure, too, to include some reflective elements into the room. Mirrors, artworks with glass, and metallic accents bounce light around the room and naturally make the space seem bigger.

If you have the means, consider replacing your carpet with a wood or terrazzo floor that catches the light. To give your feet a soft place to land, place a light_coloured rug under the end half of your bed, extending into the room. This will make your bed seem longer, without overwhelming the space.

9. Change your look seasonally.

Yes, you can still add warm and cozy accessories and extra bedding in the cooler months. Just think of how fresh and light your room will look in the spring when it all goes back into storage. To keep your seasonal pieces from overwhelming your space, stick to a subdued colour palette or one “hero” accent colour.

10. Keep surfaces clear.

Accents should be well-chosen, intentional, and, most importantly, given some breathing room. Carefully curate your dresser top or nightstand to create a clean, uncluttered look, and keep things like jewelry, books, medications, and toiletries tucked out of sight when not in use—a nightstand with drawers can be your best defense against bedside clutter..

To free up even more room, consider mounting sconces above your nightstands. New rechargeable LED bulbs eliminate the need for hardwiring, making this an option for renters or anyone who wants to avoid a visible cord.  

Let's Take This to the Next Level

Whether you are refreshing your current space, downsizing, or just starting out, these tips can help you create a spacious feeling bedroom, even when you’re short on space. Discover our full selection of bedroom and accent furniture online, or visit our in-store furniture experts today.

Don’t forget—you can book an appointment at your local store for a relaxed, no-pressure shopping experience with a dedicated sales professional who can help you find the perfect pieces for your small space.

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