How to bring more light into your home
Last updated: 29/04/2022
If you have a dingy, gloomy room in your house, then don’t just give in to the darkness! Instead, welcome in the light by taking some of these steps that may just help you create a brighter, sunnier living space.
Paint the walls and any other features, such as skirting boards and any other mouldings, in lighter colours.
That might mean doing away with statement wallpaper or now-fashionable shades of brown, but in a dark room, lighter shades are essential as they’ll reflect the natural light entering the room, rather than absorbing it.
You don’t have to go for a plain white paint, and could opt for an off-white or light grey shade.
You want to make the most of your windows, so make sure they aren’t obstructed by furniture. You should even avoid putting bookshelves parallel to a window, or they’ll obstruct the light.
Consider flooring too. If your floor is carpeted, then neutral, light shades are best.
Otherwise, wooden, ceramic or stone floors with a polished finish will reflect much more light than carpets.
However, if you can’t do much about your existing flooring, it can help to add a light coloured rug.
If you have any large, dark paintings, then save them for other rooms that are more naturally light.
As well as just generally adding to the sombre look of a room, darker paintings absorb the light coming into your room rather than reflecting it.
If you can, swap a solid door for one with a window in it. Or do away with a door altogether.
Put up mirrors to help spread out whatever natural light there is. The best way to do this is by placing a large mirror directly across from the largest window in your room.
How about a mirrored coffee table too?
If you don’t regularly clean your windows, it can be really surprising what a difference it makes. Suddenly, so much more light comes flooding in.
Some of the handheld window vacuums on the market now are great, enabling you to very quickly clean windows without leaving watery streaks.
Not surprisingly, the best way to increase the natural light in your home is to install large new windows and doors. Bi-folding doors in particular can make a huge difference.
But of course, not everyone has the budget to do this.
If your room is full of dark furniture, then it hasn’t got much hope of appearing light and airy.
So banish dark furniture in favour of lighter shades. And don’t cram too much in.
The same goes for curtains: heavy, dark curtains absorb light. Light, translucent shades, on the other hand, let the sunshine through.
However, you may need to compromise somewhere in the middle, as thick curtains will help keep your room warmer on winter evenings.
Consider the outside too. If branches and leaves grow across the windows, then they’ll block the light and make the room darker. So get trimming.
On the other hand, having some plant life can make a room feel more airy and less enclosed.
So try adding a couple of vibrant house plants to bring a bit of the outside into your gloomy room.