How do I decorate a small room, such as a box room, guest bedroom, nursery, bathroom or even a downstairs toilet?
Here are our top tips:
- An important failsafe tip is to keep to one ‘family’ of colours; don’t use lots of different colours, just take one colour ‘family’ and use different shades of it eg mid greens/ bluey greens with light oak furniture. Make sure you consider the colour of furniture, flooring and light fittings etc.
- Keep the tones fairly even ie not contrasting light and dark. Imagine you are going to take a black and white photocopy of the room – would anything appear much darker or lighter on it? So use lighter furniture in a lighter toned room and vice versa.
- Don’t be frightened to use colour though! Dark or intense colour can look stunning in a small space but keep in mind the above guidelines.
- Try painting the ceiling in the same colour as the walls to stop it feeling so box-like.
- Use reflective surfaces such as metal fixtures or a gloss finish on furniture and paintwork to increase the light and create interest. Use the age old technique of using a mirror or mirror tiles to reflect light or reflect an attractive or interesting feature of the room.
- Put in artwork such as a landscape painting or a photograph of your favourite view to give a sense of space. Or an interesting abstract will attract the eye and detract from the pokiness of a small room.
- Keep window treatments simple, such as a roman blind, roller blind or eyelet curtains. You can even just create privacy at a small window by having a display piece such as a vase or plant. I’ve sometimes used shelves in a window recess with a display of bottles or favourite nick-nacks. Of course you don’t get the thermal insulating benefits of blinds and curtains with this technique, so make sure your room is cosy.
- Good lighting is essential. Use uplighters to ‘lift’ the ceiling and bounce light off walls to ‘push them back’. You really can change the look of a room just with lighting – but more of that in a future post!