Wade Paint Co.


How to Make a Room Look Bigger
with the Right Interior Paint


When it comes to making a room feel more spacious, you don’t always need to knock down walls or undergo expensive renovations. One of the most effective and budget-friendly ways to create the illusion of a larger space is through the strategic use of interior paint.


By employing the right techniques and color choices, you can transform a cramped room into an open and airy haven. In this article, we will explore various paint ideas and complementary strategies that can help you make a room look bigger, including expanding the space, highlighting specific walls, adding height, creating depth, and addressing other factors such as mirrors and clutter.

Expand the Space

To make a room appear larger, consider using light colors on the walls and ceiling. Light hues reflect more natural and artificial light, which creates an optical illusion of a larger area.


Opt for neutral shades like soft whites, creams, pastels, or light grays to visually expand the space. (1) By painting the walls and ceiling in the same color, you eliminate visual breaks that can make a room feel smaller. This creates a seamless transition and enhances the perception of openness.

living room painted perfectly designed home by Wade Paint Co

Close the Space

On the other hand, if you have a particularly large room that feels overwhelming or lacks a cozy atmosphere, you can use darker or warmer colors to visually reduce the space. Painting an accent wall with a deep, rich tone can help bring the walls closer together, making the room feel cozier and more intimate. Just be cautious not to overdo it, as using dark colors on all walls may make the space feel smaller than desired.

bright orange accent wall freshly painted by Wade Paint Co

Highlight a Wall

Another technique to make a room appear bigger is to use a focal point on one wall. By painting a single wall with a vibrant or contrasting color, you draw attention to that specific area and create a sense of depth.


This technique can trick the eye into perceiving the room as larger because it diverts attention from the actual dimensions of the space. Choose the wall that naturally draws attention, such as the one behind a fireplace, the headboard in a bedroom, or a wall with interesting architectural details.

Expanding a Narrow Space

If you have a long and narrow room, you can use paint to visually expand it. Paint the shorter walls in a slightly darker shade than the longer walls to create an illusion of width. 

This technique balances the proportions and reduces the tunnel effect, making the room feel more spacious. Additionally, vertical stripes or patterns on the longer walls can create an optical illusion of height, further enhancing the perceived size of the space.

Adding Height to a Room

To make a room with low ceilings appear taller, choose a lighter color for the ceiling compared to the walls.


By painting the ceiling a shade or two lighter than the walls, you create the perception of increased height. This draws the eye upward and makes the ceiling feel more distant, effectively adding visual height to the room. Remember to keep the walls relatively light to maintain a cohesive look.

Create Depth

To create the illusion of depth in a room, consider using a technique called “faux finishing.” Faux finishes, such as sponging, rag rolling, or strié, add texture and visual interest to the walls. These techniques break up the flatness of a single color, creating dimension and depth. By using lighter shades for the base coat and slightly darker shades for the faux finish, you can enhance the illusion of depth and make the room feel larger. (2)

interior painting detail in mount pleasant by Wade Paint Co

Mirrors and Reducing Clutter

In addition to the strategic use of paint, mirrors and clutter reduction can play a significant role in making a room feel more spacious. Mirrors reflect light and create the illusion of depth, making a room appear larger than it is. Place a large mirror on a wall opposite a window to reflect natural light and create a sense of openness. You can also use mirrored furniture or decorative mirror panels strategically to amplify the effect.


Reducing clutter is another essential aspect of making a room feel bigger. A cluttered space can make even a large room appear cramped and claustrophobic. Keep surfaces clean and clear, and consider implementing smart storage solutions to minimize visual distractions. Utilize shelves, baskets, and cabinets to organize and store items, keeping them out of sight. By decluttering your space, you create an unobstructed environment that allows for a more open and expansive feel.

What's Your Go-To Technique for Making a Space Look Bigger?

There are numerous techniques and tricks to make a room appear bigger with the right interior paint job. From using light colors to create an open atmosphere to strategically placing mirrors and reducing clutter, each approach has its advantages. However, the effectiveness of these techniques may vary depending on the specific room, its dimensions, and your personal preferences.


Experimenting with different approaches is key to finding what works best for your space. Consider trying various paint colors, accent walls, and decorative elements to achieve the desired effect. Remember that lighting, furniture arrangement, and other factors also contribute to the overall perception of a room’s size.


Transforming a small or cramped room into a more spacious and inviting space doesn’t necessarily require extensive renovations. By employing the right interior paint techniques, such as using light colors to expand the space, creating focal points, adding height, and incorporating mirrors while reducing clutter, you can visually enhance the size of a room. Don’t be afraid to experiment, but avoid mistakes as much as possible. Find the combination of techniques that works best for your specific needs. With a little creativity and the right paint choices, you can make any room look bigger and more open, creating a comfortable and welcoming environment.

Remember, the key is to strike a balance between color choices, decorative elements, and the existing architecture and dimensions of your room. By doing so, you can achieve a harmonious and visually appealing space that feels more spacious and inviting to both residents and guests. From making a space larger to turning your home into one of the popular images you see online: modern farmhouse or rustic retreat having the right paint can completely renovate the way you feel about your space.

If you are looking for help with expanding your space in Charleston then call the best interior painter in town: Wade Paint Co. for all your painting needs.

(1) https://worldsfavouritecolour.info/1991/01/09/what-is-the-worlds-favourite-colour/
(2) https://www.interiordezine.com/interior-decorating-ecourse/


Wade Paint Co.

Wade Paint Co. proudly offers interior painting and exterior painting services to the following communities: West Ashley, Daniel Island, Kiawah Island, Folly Beach, Mount Pleasant, Isle of Palm’s, Sullivan’s Island, and North Charleston.

Frequently Asked Questions

While light colors generally make a room appear larger, it’s also essential to consider the overall lighting conditions in the room. Natural light and artificial lighting can affect how colors are perceived. It’s a good idea to test paint samples on the walls and observe them under different lighting conditions before making a final decision.

Yes, light gray can be an excellent choice for making a room look bigger. Its ability to reflect light, neutral versatility, serene ambiance, and enhancement of architectural features can contribute to a visually expansive and inviting space. When used strategically in combination with other design elements, light gray can help create the illusion of a larger room.