“Cozy” stops being the correct adjective for your home when setting down one new piece of decor makes the space suddenly feel too crowded. Therefore, making a small space appear bigger is essential for comfort. However, if you are in a studio apartment or an older home, you have limited options for physically expanding your space. A common method that designers use to combat claustrophobic living spaces is to incorporate tricks on the eye. These optical illusions will show you how to maximize your space and let you breathe again!
Stripes continue to be a powerful and timeless decorating tool for designers. Design elements that carry a person’s gaze elsewhere can help a room seem larger. Vertically striped wallpaper and decor give a room height, while horizontal stripes appear to expand the floor space. Even a color ombre on the walls will give the illusion that a space is bigger than it actually is.
Mirrors can do a lot of heavy lifting when it comes to opening up a room. A mirror near a natural light source will reflect that light into the desired space, brightening a dull and confined atmosphere. If possible, choose a large mirror as opposed to multiple smaller ones—one single, massive mirror can give the impression that the space has doubled in size. Placing mirrors in places you’ll use them, such as your home’s entryway or a bedroom door, can expand a room while serving a purpose.
Focus On Function
Creating more space doesn’t need to be 100-percent an illusion. Floating shelves that seem impossibly suspended on the wall maximize the space by lessening the room decor’s visual weight and keeping items up off your floor. Avoiding excessive clutter, both in decor elements and more generally, will free up space and allow the viewer to enjoy the room without stress.
If you’re looking to maximize your space using optical illusions but are concerned about forgoing your dream design elements, fret not. Incorporating any of these optical illusions and strategies will make a small room seem larger, but they don’t need to be the focal point of your decorating. In fact, making these optical illusions a natural part of your design can make them even more effective!
Homes with kids, pets, or even just yourself will get messy, no matter what you do. Unless something dramatic happens, you may not think cleaning your walls is very important. But cleaning your home’s walls becomes more reasonable when you realize that fingerprints, oil, germs, dust, and pollen build up on them over time. Dirty walls can worsen allergies for family members, and touching unclean walls can make people sick—especially children.
While wiping down or spraying a painted wall once a year may be enough, cleaning your designer wallcoverings may involve a little more care. Following these top tips for cleaning and maintaining wallpaper in your home will prevent damage to your wallpaper and protect you and your family.
Wallpapers have changed a lot over time, and so have the methods necessary to clean them. For a long time, the toy product we now know as Play-Doh was actually a stain-free method to remove coal residue from wallpaper when the wallcoverings weren’t washable. Nowadays, standard wallpapers are less easy to ruin, so you can use warm water and dish soap on a slightly damp sponge to spot clean trouble areas. Dusting and gently wiping down walls throughout the year will prevent any buildup that would make a yearly wash tedious.
Note: Always check the wallpaper manufacturer’s instructions before getting wallpaper wet in any way. Some wallpapers still peel or bubble when damp. If you no longer have the manufacturer’s instructions, call for instructions, or choose a small, inconspicuous area to test carefully. If your cleaning routine damages the wallpaper during testing, do not continue with this method.
Vinyl wallpaper is the most trouble-resistant option, making it perfect for rooms that get damp or dirty. Vinyl wallpaper can stand up to a good amount of scrubbing with the same warm water and soap on a damp sponge. Avoid cleaning products that have strong chemical ingredients, such as bleach, that could alter the appearance of your wallpaper or drip and ruin the flooring below. Wash and dry with non-abrasive options, like soft towels, to prevent small tears in the wallcovering.
Peel & Stick or Removable
Self-adhesive wallpapers are perfect for people who want to instantly change the feel of a room by covering either an entire wall or just a section. You can easily remove, reposition, or replace many of these styles of wallpaper. Peel-and-stick wallpapers are often made of vinyl and can be cleaned in the same way, though with extra caution so that you don’t shift the wallcovering.
Cleaning and maintaining wallpaper in your home are oft-ignored aspects of keeping a sanitary living space. Luckily, walls do not need cleaning as frequently as the rest of the home. Dust at least once a month to keep allergens away. You can spot-clean walls and wallpaper as necessary or at least once a year in high-touch areas. A little bit of care will keep your home’s walls looking spectacular and your family happy to have a night in.
Styling a home around functionality and beauty instead of excess can prevent some problems. It can create a space that doesn’t feel lived in—as if the owner has just moved in, or even worse as if they just moved out. You can take steps to prevent your home from feeling impersonal without sacrificing the benefits of minimalism or the company you’d like to welcome in. Here are our main tips on how to add warmth to a minimalist space.
A significant aspect of a room’s mood is its lighting. Blue lights, which are typical in grocery stores or medical offices, can have a cold effect on the light colors minimalist rooms tend to have. To create a more welcoming appearance, use warm light from incandescent bulbs which range in color from light yellow to deep orange. In the same way that fireplaces create a cozy at-home experience, warm lights capture the fireside glow and bring relaxation to the entire living space.
Avoid medical, stark whites when choosing furniture, décor, and fabrics for around your minimalist home. Such colors will make rooms feel cold and impersonal. Even if you prefer the aesthetic of a crisp apartment with few loud colors, diving into different tones of white and bringing some colors into your home further—such as grey or tan—can create a more welcoming environment.
Texture Through Textiles
Textures can cut through the smooth and polished finish that sometimes comes with purposefully empty spaces. Textured fabrics give a sense of life and occupancy to a room without the visual noise or bulk of rustic wooden furniture. For instance, gray fur blankets, heavy knitted throws, or luxury fabric curtains with visible texture add significantly to a room’s appeal without imposing on a minimalist style.
Minimalism is centered around deliberate choices and understanding the function of every item you hold onto. Whether you’re looking to create a space that feels more like home for yourself or more welcoming for your guests, knowing how to add warmth to a minimalist space will help you create dramatic, purposeful changes in your home’s atmosphere.