7 tricks to make your home appear bigger

Emysharp blog

7 tricks to make your home appear bigger

Emysharp blog

Living in a small home can be difficult, there just seems to be stuff everywhere at all times, and if, like me, you live in a modern house with a grand total of two cupboards, things can start to get really challenging. There are, however, a number of fairly easy ways to trick the eye into thinking a room is bigger than it is, create a feeling of space, and get your clutter under control. 

So here’s 7 easy ways to make your home appear bigger than it really is…
Trick the eye

There are lots of sneaky ways you can trick the eye:

For example, painting your ceiling and skirting boards the same colour as the walls, will work to blur the edges and give the illusion of more space. If you’re feeling brave, wallpapering the ceiling will draw the eye up, plus would create a really cool little feature too!

It might sound odd, but a big rug – once that extends under your furniture – will draw the eye wider, again creating the illusion of space.

Finally, you don’t need to fill all your space, leaving some areas clear will create an airy feel, and reduce things feeling cluttered. For example, don’t fill every shelf on a bookcase, creating what’s known as ‘negative space’.

2. Keep things simple

A few pieces of simple, un-fussy furniture, instead of lots of bits will free-up all important floor space. It’s a good idea to stay away from ‘bulky’ pieces that take up a lot of room – and sofas raised on legs will give the illusion of more space.

3. De-clutter regularly 
It’s funny how quickly you can ‘fill-up’ a house with all your belongings, but do you really need all that stuff that you seem to accumulate over the years? Regular clear-outs can make sure you use the space you have as effectively as possible. Ask yourself – would you buy that item now? If the answer is no, then it’s got to go – being ruthless is essential! I’ve previously shared easy ways to declutter your home here, and carry out a brutal spring clean once a year.

4. Give everything it’s own space 
Everything in your house should have its own space – and I mean in a drawer/storage box/basket, and not ‘on the floor’ or (as my husband’s car keys & wallet seems to favour) on top my carefully styled shoe cupboard in the hall. This makes it so much easier to keep surfaces and table tops clear, which again give the impression of having more space. Of course, it’s always nice to have some ‘pretty’ (and probably not-too-practical bits on show too!)

5. Let the light in
Maximising the light you have in your home is a sure-fire way of tricking the eye into thinking a space is bigger than it really is. I’ve used light colours throughout my home, which although may seem boring at times, has really transformed the space we have (just have a look at our lounge before and after its makeover for evidence of this!).

Heavy curtains make a room appear smaller, so opt for light and airy drapes which don’t block the natural light coming into a room  – I’ve got these bargain Ikea drapes in two of our bedrooms, or even better, how about some shutters? We’ve recently had some installed in our conservatory, however I’d have them all over the house if I could. 

If, like us, natural light is a bit of an issue in your home, how about a well-placed mirror? Placing mirrors opposite windows will help to bounce light around a room. Not only that, but a mirror naturally creates the illusion of having more space – so get one up in every room!

6. Storage is key
Storage can be the most important thing to get right – too much clutter can make even the biggest room feel tiny. I blogged previously about space-saving storage in small homes, and the tricks I use to ‘hide’ things away within my house, but one of the easiest ways to maximise storage is to think about every last opportunity to create space. What about using pretty baskets to store bits under the bed/on top of wardrobes/in awkward un-used corners? 

7. Make your storage work even harder
You can also ‘double-up’ on space within cupboards – we keep all our paperwork and documents in a filing cabinet hidden away in our coat cupboard by the front door, and have installed shelves in the cupboard under-stairs cupboard to store yet more junk.

Also, I use drawer dividers to squeeze as many clothes as possible in each drawer, and hanging items on the back of doors, and using storage boxes in that unused bit at the bottom of a wardrobe can also work really well.

Hope this has been helpful, and given you some ideas on how to make your home feel more spacious. What other tricks or tips do you use when living in a small space?

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Whenever you mention the words “take care of your home” most people think of the technical and complex home maintenance. While the technical personnel play a significant role in home maintenance, taking care of a home is primarily every person’s responsibility. There are roles that everyone can partake to maintain a clean, healthy and sustainable environment in our homes and the surrounding.

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Emysharp Interiors 10 Tips for Home Renovation Projects

1. Create Your Renovation Wishlist

Before you start renovating your home, it’s important to consider exactly what you want in order to gauge how extensive the home renovation will be. What is the goal of your renovation:

– Are you making better use of space for your family to enjoy for years to come?
– Or are you improving your home to increase its real estate value?

Sketch out your vision while deciding your renovation wants and needs. You should also do your research on your neighborhood to determine what projects would be a good return on investment and which ones would be less valuable to you in the long run. And when you make your list, prioritize your wants and needs. Having a detailed list of your desires, and what will make the most impact on your life at home, makes it easier to decide how best to allocate your money, as well as how best to move forward in case any surprises come up in the process. 

2. Set Your Renovation Budget 

Setting a budget and sticking to it is key during a large renovation process.  It is best practice to set aside a contingency fund for unplanned repairs and unexpected costs, and expect to use it. Also, plan on the indirect renovation cost that might arise during the renovation, like dining out more, or staying in a hotel for a few nights. When you work with a reputable contractor, they should have a system for keeping costs, and any changes to expenses, in line with their estimates.

3. Do Your Research

When preparing for a large home renovation, it’s important to know what you are getting yourself into, especially if this is your first time. Talk with friends and family who have completed renovations in the past and see what they struggled with and how they overcame certain obstacles. Read up on best practices and tips for going through a renovation. The contractor you choose should be a great resource, but it is best to already have a solid grasp on the ins and outs of the renovation process before getting to that point. 

4. Hire a Reputable Contractor

Speaking of contractors, the very first tip should be to find a qualified one that is capable of bringing your dreams to life. However we know this usually occurs to homeowners after they’ve dreamed of the possibilities. Keep in mind that a great contractor may also offer some possibilities  that you hadn’t considered.

During the selection process, check out reviews and see what their past clients say about their work and service. Schedule a consultation to discuss your project and ask your contractor questions. You will want your contractor to be a partner in this process that knows the best ways to achieve what you want within your budget. A reputable contractor will be able to present solutions to the issues you have with your home, based on their experience.  They can also point out structural enhancements that can improve the energy use and functionality of your home long term. 

5. Understand Neighborhood Bylaws & Permitting

Once you have settled on your renovation team, it’s time to delve deeper into your scope of work. There may be ordinances from your neighborhood or HOA associated with home additions, lot lines and more that can alter your original plans. As the homeowner, you can research if any of these exist and share the information with your contractor. However, when you work with a reputable contractor, they should handle the process of obtaining the proper building permits in your area. 

6. Understand Your Timeline 

When planning the timeline of your renovation, take into consideration upcoming holidays and events you would like your home to be ready by. It is best to set your end date and plan backward, being realistic and planning for extra time if possible in the case of delays or additional repairs. Your contractor will guide you on how the season can affect or delay any building plans.

7. Pack Up and Declutter

This may sound overly simple but packing your things up and decluttering your renovation zone is one of our most important tips. Not only does it protect your possessions from being damaged but your renovation team can do their work more quickly and efficiently without your things in the way. For a renovation spanning your entire home, consider renting an offsite storage unit to keep your items safe and out of the way. 

8. Protect Kids and Pets

Another important aspect when renovating your house is to think about your children and pets. While a renovation may be intriguing for your kids who want to get in and play and watch, it can be dangerous. Ensure you have gates and the proper safety equipment installed to keep adventurous toddlers from roaming through a construction site, and the same goes for pets. You may want to consider getting a pet sitter for longer projects to ensure your furry family members are safe. 

9. Don’t Focus on Trends

It’s very easy to get entranced by the latest trends. While it’s great to gather inspiration from trendy design ideas, they may not stand the test of time. When it comes to a home renovation, you want to ensure you will love the finished product for a long time, so it’s best to choose timeless designs, and decorate with of-the-moment decor that you can easily update as the times change. 

10. Plan Ahead for Life During Renovation

Will you be staying at your home while the renovation takes place, or will you move to a hotel? Your timeline and cost are huge factors when making this decision. Many homeowners opt for staying at home if they can, however, it can be a difficult time to get through. Renovations are often uncomfortable, leaving you with loud noises, dust, and more, to deal with in your home. Consider your routine and work with your contractor on the best times to do certain tasks for a smoother transition. One of the best things you can do is designate a renovation-free zone where you and your family can escape to for some peace. 

Renovating Your Home with Emysharp Interiors

If you need an expert contractor for your home renovation, reach out to our Renovation Team at Emysharp Interiors. We are a group of dedicated realtors, contractors, designers and architects with over10 years of experience here in Nigeria. 

Contact us today to get your renovation project started. 

Get a free quote for your project. Click here.

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