Interior Design Hints - Tip the Scale - Ensure that Furnishings are in Proportion with Small Spaces or Tall Ceilings
How to handle high ceilings and small spaces
Have you ever walked into a room and something is just a little off? The colors work well together - the styles and patterns are complementary - but there's something that you just can't put your finger on that makes the room somehow feel out of balance. Odds are that something in the room is too big or too small. It might be the furniture - or the height of the kitchen cabinets - or the size of the mantle on the fireplace. The proportions of items in the room are just as critical as color and style. Take a look at these pictures. The very large armoire is the right size for this room with high ceilings. But the plaid chair and small picture on the wall look like miniature furniture next to it. By contrast, the larger wall hanging on the left balances the tall ceiling and height of the armoire.
High Ceilings - A single large item that serves as the focal point can help to make a room with high ceilings feel spacious but not cavernous. A tall china cabinet, large vent hood, a floor to ceiling fireplace, or big armoire can help to balance the height of a room. Keep the wall art fairly large also. Combining smaller pictures into a balanced cohesive display can work the same as a single large painting. A small picture on its own will get lost in a large expanse of wall. An upper layer of kitchen cabinets, floor to ceiling built-in bookshelves, and tall mirrors all help to balance the proportion and put everything on the same scale. Make sure that the accessories - lamps, vases, candles - are big enough to fill the space. Too many small items can make a large room feel and look cluttered.
Small Rooms - When space is at a premium, it might seem logical to keep all of the items small. But that just adds to the cramped feel of a tiny room. A large colorful painting or wall hanging is a great way to draw attention but won't take up precious floor space. Bedrooms are oftentimes the rooms that are the most undersized. Always use a headboard of some kind on the bed. It doesn't have to literally be a headboard - a shaped piece of plywood, covered with foam backing and fabric, can be attached to the wall as a nice backdrop to the bed. Think about hanging curtains from the ceiling to the floor, regardless of the window size. Adding height and breadth on the wall without taking up floor space will make the room seem larger and leave space for the furniture needed in the room. Keep the number of furniture pieces to a minimum and look for items that can double as storage space. Slide out drawers under the bed, a chest for a coffee table, or a footstool with a removable top help to contain clutter and keep items out of view. Painting everything - even the woodwork - the same color can also keep the space from looking chopped up and smaller.