7 Decorating Mistakes That Make Your Home Feel Smaller

3 min read

When it comes to decorating our homes, we often focus on creating a beautiful and stylish space. However, sometimes our design choices can unintentionally make our homes feel smaller. Whether you have a small apartment or a spacious house, avoiding these common decorating mistakes can help you make the most of your space and create a more open and inviting atmosphere.

1. Choosing Dark Colors

Dark colors can absorb light and make a room feel smaller and more cramped. While they can add drama and sophistication to a space, using them in abundance can have the opposite effect. Instead, opt for lighter shades that reflect light and make your rooms appear larger. Soft neutrals, pastels, and whites are great choices for creating an airy and spacious feel.

2. Overloading with Furniture

One of the most common mistakes people make when decorating their homes is overcrowding the space with too much furniture. While you may love that oversized sectional or the idea of having multiple seating options, it’s important to consider the size and scale of your room. Overwhelming a small space with bulky furniture can make it feel cramped and claustrophobic. Opt for smaller, streamlined pieces that fit the scale of your room.

3. Neglecting Natural Light

Maximizing natural light is essential to create an open and airy atmosphere in your home. Avoid heavy curtains or blinds that block sunlight from entering your space. Instead, opt for sheer or light-colored window treatments that allow natural light to filter in. Additionally, strategically placing mirrors opposite windows can help bounce light around the room, making it feel brighter and more spacious.

4. Ignoring Vertical Space

Many homeowners overlook the potential of vertical space when decorating their homes. Utilizing vertical space can help make your rooms feel taller and more expansive. Consider installing floor-to-ceiling shelving units or hanging artwork high on the walls to draw the eye upward. This not only adds storage but also creates the illusion of higher ceilings, making your room feel more spacious.

5. Cluttered Surfaces

Keeping surfaces clutter-free is crucial in creating an open and airy environment. Too many knick-knacks, books, or accessories can make a space feel chaotic and cramped. Instead, opt for a few carefully curated pieces that add personality and style without overwhelming the room. Utilize hidden storage solutions, such as baskets or decorative boxes, to keep smaller items out of sight and maintain a clean and clutter-free space.

6. Using Small-Scale Rugs

The right rug can transform a room, but using a rug that is too small can visually shrink the space. When choosing a rug, make sure it is large enough to anchor the furniture and extend beyond the edges of the seating area. This creates the illusion of a larger space and helps visually connect different elements in the room. Additionally, selecting rugs with light colors or subtle patterns can further enhance the spacious feel.

7. Lack of Proper Lighting

Insufficient lighting can make even the most spacious room feel cramped and unwelcoming. In addition to natural light, it’s important to incorporate a variety of lighting sources to create a warm and inviting atmosphere. Use a combination of overhead lights, task lighting, and ambient lighting to illuminate different areas of your room. This not only enhances functionality but also helps create depth and makes the space feel larger.


By avoiding these common decorating mistakes, you can create a home that feels spacious, open, and inviting. Choosing lighter colors, decluttering surfaces, and maximizing natural light are just a few simple ways to make your rooms appear larger. Remember to consider the scale of your furniture, utilize vertical space, and incorporate proper lighting to enhance the overall ambiance. With thoughtful design choices, you can transform your space into a beautiful and expansive haven.


1. How can I make a small living room feel bigger?

There are several ways to make a small living room feel bigger:

  • Choose light colors for the walls and furniture.
  • Use mirrors to reflect light and create the illusion of more space.
  • Opt for furniture with exposed legs to create a sense of openness.
  • Keep the room clutter-free and organized.
  • Utilize vertical space with shelving or wall-mounted storage.

2. Can using large furniture in a small space make it feel bigger?

No, using large furniture in a small space can make it feel cramped and crowded. It’s important to choose furniture that is appropriately scaled for the room to create a sense of balance and proportion. Opt for smaller, streamlined pieces that fit the space well.

3. How can I maximize natural light in my home?

To maximize natural light in your home:

  • Use light-colored or sheer window treatments.
  • Keep windows clean to allow more light to enter.
  • Trim any landscaping or trees that may block sunlight.
  • Place mirrors strategically to reflect light.

4. Are there any specific colors that make a room feel larger?

Lighter colors such as soft neutrals, pastels, and whites tend to make a room feel larger. These colors reflect light and create a sense of openness. However, it’s important to choose colors that work well with your overall design aesthetic and personal preferences.

5. How can I create the illusion of higher ceilings?

To create the illusion of higher ceilings:

  • Hang artwork or mirrors higher on the walls.
  • Use vertical stripes or patterns on walls or curtains.
  • Install floor-to-ceiling shelving or bookcases.
  • Choose light-colored paint or wallpaper for the ceiling.


Creating a spacious and open atmosphere in your home is possible by avoiding common decorating mistakes. Choosing light colors, decluttering surfaces, utilizing vertical space, and incorporating proper lighting are just a few strategies to make your rooms feel larger. By considering scale, maximizing natural light, and selecting the right furniture and accessories, you can transform your home into a welcoming and expansive haven.

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