Unless you have a sprawling, custom-built home outfitted with a luxurious bath and vanity, chances are pretty good you dream about a bigger bathroom. For most of us, adding square footage is out of the question. Luckily, you can make your small bathroom look bigger without a costly remodel.
Because your bathroom is a space you use on a daily basis. It shouldn’t be a cramped, dark cave you wish to escape. It should be a retreat. A place that refreshes, revitalizes, and inspires you.
The following decorating tips are like visual magic. Through the strategic use of lighting, color schemes, and feature placement, you can trick the eye into believing you have more space than you do!
Imagine a room the size of an elephant. It’s big, right? Then imagine the same room, with an elephant inside. Suddenly the space seems a lot smaller!
Clutter acts the exact same way. To make your bathroom appear bigger, you need to provide as much empty space as possible. Take a look at your bathroom as it stands right now. What do you not use or need in the bathroom?
Is there a pile of old magazines by the toilet? Do you have bath products in the shower you never use? Are there toiletries on the vanity that have long since collected dust? All of these can go! They are clutter.
2. Set the Stage with Light Colors
Big and bold colors can be fun. They also overwhelm the senses. They create clearly defined lines and shadows. Unfortunately, this also makes your space look smaller.
To open up the space, you want to use light, pale colors. Look for tones that are neutral or white. This will help brighten up your space.
3. Add lots of Light
Light opens up a space. Look for lighting that doesn’t introduce clutter or take up counter space. This could include recessed can lighting and wall scones. You might replace your vanity for a brighter version. Or you could incorporate a few hanging pendant lights.
4. Use Mirrors to Reflect Your Space
Think of a mirror room where space seems to go on for infinity. While you don’t want to turn your bathroom into an exotic feature plucked from the circus, you can still use the principle to your advantage.
Start with a large single-pane mirror over your vanity. Avoid side-by-side mirrors or mirrors comprised of multiple pieces. The idea is to cut down on the number of lines.
Then, if the falls allow, add another mirror on a separate wall. This allows the mirrors to reflect off one another, making the space seem to extend beyond itself.
5. Cut Small Accessories from the Countertop
We already talked about cutting clutter – the items you don’t actually need. Now’s the time to look at the small accessories. The adorable Q-Tip holder on the counter. The hand lotion. The toothpaste. The hairbrush.
All of these small accessories don’t need to get tossed. You use them. But, find a new place to store them. A place off of your bathroom vanity.
6. Eliminate Things that Stick Out
Our eyes naturally stop where there’s a break in a line. This is true, even if the line just keeps going. Any small piece of furniture that sticks out, breaks up lines and makes the room seem smaller.
There are some instances when the “stick out” is worth the sacrifice. Just take a moment to consider if each piece is needed.
7. Go with Light-Colored Flooring
Like your walls, the color of your floor can make your space appear larger or bigger. Go with a light color to help keep the space bright. If your floor is dark and you aren’t planning an update anytime soon, consider light colored floor rugs.
8. Floating Shelves Over the Toilet
We all need to store some items in the bathroom. And, the space over the toilet it often left unused. Rather than fill it up completely with a clunky over-the-toilet cabinet, consider installing floating shelves. This will help keep the visual weight down, while providing function.
9. “Expand” the Ceiling Visually
Remember how we talked about light colored walls and light colored floors. The same principle applies to the ceiling. Except, the ceiling can often appear even darker than the walls. If it works with your choice of wall color, you might even consider going one shade lighter up top.
10. Blend Your Color Choices
A light grey floor, pale green wall and white ceiling fit the bill for all the color recommendations we just made. But – a combination like this also creates lines. And, lines make a space look smaller.
As much as possible, select colors that blend well together, helping to eliminate lines and keep shadows to a minimum.
11. Outfit Your Shower with Clear Glass
A shower door acts as a wall, both visually and functionally. But, you can minimize the visual piece by using clear glass. This allows the eye to easily look past the divide and enjoy the full square footage of your space.