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On the JJ Barnes Blog, I check out tips from experts at Land of Rugs  and Meble Furniture for what colours to use to make your living room look bigger.

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My living room is the heart of our home. It’s where we relax watching TV or playing games, entertain friends, and spend time with family, and while I love this room and everything it represents, it’s a small space. Because I want to know how to stop this space feeling cramped and claustrophobic, experts at Land of Rugs and Meble Furniture sent over their advice for what colours I can use to make my living room look and feel bigger.

White For Brightness

Create the illusion of a larger space in small living rooms by painting walls white, especially if the room benefits from natural light that can bounce off the walls.

White tones create a clean and calming ambience in small spaces, but it’s a good idea to incorporate warm or bright colours in furnishings, accessories, or lush plants to avoid the room feeling stale and sterile. For instance, white stands out beautifully against darker wooden flooring colourful rugs.

Raf Michalowski, an interior design expert from Meble Furniture, explained that eggshell or satin finishes typically reflect light to create the illusion of more space.

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Light Taupe For Warmth

If you’re looking for a gentle alternative to white, light taupe allows light to bounce off the walls, making a small room appear larger, without the harshness of pure white. It can add warmth to any room, and make a space look elegant, and when used in a space with no architectural character, it can make a room look more expensive.

Zara O’Hare, interior design expert, from Land of Rugs, explained that it’s important to choose the right shade of taupe. A lighter shade of taupe will brighten small, dark living rooms and make them look larger, while a dark taupe will feel cosier and more enclosed.

By combining taupe with white furnishings, you’ll create a light and airy ambience.

Light Grey For Freshness

A cool, light grey colour is a fresh and bright alternative to the starkness of pure white which will visually expand the space.

Zara recommended using light grey in moderately lit rooms for a cosy yet spacious ambience which allows light to bounce off the walls. Light grey also helps your living room stay feeling cool, as opposed to the warmth that a taupe would infuse.

Blush Pink For A Cheerful Ambience

Uplift a small living room by infusing it with a cheerful and airy ambience by choosing a shade of blush pink.

Blue pink works particularly well in west-facing rooms with ample natural light, especially during sunset hours, and pairs beautifully with light, warm neutral tones like beige, sand, and ivory. Consider painting the ceiling in the same hue for a cosy atmosphere.

Pink is more than just a feminine tone, and Raf believes it can work well in various settings, including as a complementary colour to masculine woods, modern metals, and luxurious velvet or leather furniture.

Navy For Luxury

Rich colours infuse a room with drama, evoking a sense of grandeur and luxury while visually expanding the room.

Raf recommends choosing a navy blue so deep that it almost resembles black. When combined with lighter walls or accessories, warm wood tones and ample natural light, navy blue creates something timeless, comforting, and spacious.

Sea Green For Nature

For those seeking an earthy ambience, green is often synonymous with the beauty of nature and botanical elements, and sea green is an excellent option.

Soft green tones can make a small room feel larger, and transform a dull space into a tranquil sanctuary.

Zara recommends embracing the calming power of green to infuse your environment with a soothing and rejuvenating atmosphere. In well-windowed rooms, sea green walls naturally guide the eye towards the outdoor greenery, creating a seamless blend between the room and its surroundings.

7.   Soft Black For Drama

White isn’t the best choice for rooms with limited natural light. Without light bouncing off the walls, the colour could have an adverse effect on the space. However, if you embrace the lack of sunlight and choose darker hues, can create a captivating and cosy atmosphere. 

Dark hues like charcoal or black evoke an intimate and grand atmosphere in the space, especially when you paint the ceiling and trim in the same hue to create contrast and depth, making your walls recede and your ceiling appear higher.

Raf explained that using dark colours on an accent wall, ceiling, or floor can achieve this striking effect.


If you have a small living room, like me, I hope this guide has given you some useful hints for how you could make it feel bigger, brighter, or just more fabulous! I’m definitely not bold enough to opt for a black or navy blue, but some bright accessories and green shades would suit me perfectly.

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