I’m writing this while the majority of the world are isolated at home. While it’s a weird time indeed, one thing I’ve found myself doing, as I’m guessing you might have too, is a little DIY around the house.
One area I’ve been particularly interested in is my kitchen, mainly because it’s a small space and can feel cramped at the best of time. If you’ve been unlucky enough to have a tiny kitchen, or any room for that matter which feels confining or a bit dull, there is hope that you can make the space look lovely simply by brightening it up.
And how can you do that? Well here are some ways you can brighten up any room at home while you’re isolating.
Tips for brightening any room:
- The “where did you get that” item
- A touch of green, but not too much
- White radiators
- The floor is lava
- Back in Black
The “where did you get that” item
If you’re reading this at home, does the room you’re in right now have a focal point or one piece of furniture that everything else gravitates towards?
Sometimes a room can look brighter if it is decluttered and the space you have to work with can show itself off. Instead of having pictures dotted around the room or side tables beside every seat, pick one central piece of furniture and make that where things are kept or put on display.
It will naturally draw eyes towards the centre of the room and artificially make a room feel larger than it is, especially if you have a unique picture, piece of art or ornament you can show off.
A touch of green, but not too much
What better way to make a room feel naturally vibrant than by adding some greenery?
Flowers in a big vase can look nice on occasion, but small touches of green close enough to walls help lift the mood and last longer. Plants like dracaena and Chamaedorea are low maintenance and do the job.
Make sure that any plants you plan on having aren’t sitting on the floor. Even when in a fancy plant pot, a plant below eye level can make a space feel untidy or look misplaced.
And doubly make sure that plants are not left on window sills. You want them to get as much natural light as possible, but you don’t want them blocking the view out of a room.
You might have already redecorated a room to make it look brighter and still find yourself unsure as to why it’s just not looking how you want it to.
Have you thought about the role your radiator plays? It’s often the one piece in a room that is not maintained or cleaned regularly, and only gets attention when it breaks.
If you have a big column radiator which is supposed to be white but honestly has seen better days, you should upgrade to a white heated towel rail instead. Flipping the direction of the radiator on its side not only gives the illusion of more wall space, but a rail will also physically take up less space and let your bright wall not be hidden away.
I’ve found that Trade Radiator’s white towel rails work great in smaller rooms you want to add more space in, and make sure you get matching white valves. The last thing you want is a lovely new radiator installed beside rusty old valves.
The floor is lava
Maybe you remember this game as a kid; the one where you’re in your living room and must get out without your feet touching the floor. It’s a little silly, but you can take the same advice when it comes to making a room feel brighter.
Sometimes a brighter room can be a “lighter” room. If you can free up floor space and give yourself back inches in every corner, space will instinctively feel bigger and brighter.
So, how do you do it? The simplest way is to see if everyday items can go without touching the floor. If you have a bookcase in the living room, is it possible to instead have shelves a few feet off the ground instead? If you have a few lamps dotted around the room, is it possible to instead have spotlights in the roof or lights affixed to the wall?
The light one is a popular feature now in trendy cafes and restaurants where you’ll see Edison bulbs hanging down from long wires and hooks, rather than lamps everywhere for ambience.
Back in Black
This post has all been focussed on light and naturally lifting tones to help brighten a space, so how could using black make something seem lighter?
If you’re smart with space and know to punctuate a room with an item or two, use black as the colour. For example, if you’ve got a big white kitchen and white table, black minimally styled chairs can add depth. You can do the same with black or slate picture frames on walls, and charcoal painted plant pots.
As long as there’s a little pop somewhere in the room, it can complement all the light elements.
Need more DIY inspiration for your home?
Check out all the DIY home decor posts here, including Modern Updates For A Classic Home.
This post has originally been featured in Residence Style.