Cre­ate the per­fect space

Bray People - - View From The Street -

DID you know that with just a touch of colour, you can per­form vis­ual mir­a­cles? Small spa­ces can be ex­panded, large spa­ces can be made more in­ti­mate, ceil­ings can be made to look higher or lower, and im­per­fec­tions can be hid­den in plain sight!

All you need is to pick up a paint­brush —and fol­low th­ese sim­ple guide­lines.

Mak­ing small spa­ces look larger

Pale colours tend to re­cede vis­ually (move away from you), so the lighter the colour you choose for your walls and your floor, the larger your space will ap­pear.

Cool colours such as blues, greens and pur­ples also ap­pear to re­cede, mak­ing small spa­ces vis­ually ap­pear more open and spa­cious.

Shiny sur­faces can help you ex­pand space even more, which is def­i­nitely some­thing to re­mem­ber when se­lect­ing paint sheens.

Tip: Use a semi-gloss sheen to vis­ually ex­pand a small kitchen or bath­room. Use a softer sheen, such as satin or eggshell, in bed­rooms (th­ese are es­pe­cially great for kid’s rooms) and liv­ing ar­eas to of­fer a more sub­tle fin­ish.

Mak­ing large spa­ces look smaller

Deep, dark colours ap­pear to vis­ually ad­vance (move to­wards you) so they’re the choice if you need to re­duce the sense of space in one, sev­eral or all di­rec­tions. Warm colours such as reds, or­anges, and yel­lows also ap­pear to ad­vance, mak­ing large spa­ces painted in th­ese types of hues ap­pear more warm and cozy. Soft, non-re­flec­tive colours also di­min­ish the sense of space, so choose matte sheens for the walls of an over-large room.

Tip: Use deep, warm colours to make a large, life­less din­ing area (see En­ter­tain­ing Dé­cor fea­ture) seem more in­ti­mate. Warm colours not only make large rooms ap­pear cosier, but also can help to stim­u­late the ap­petite!

Pat­terns are a wild card

Pat­terns with a strong di­rec­tional feel (stripes, for ex­am­ple) can also help to vis­ually ex­pand your space.

Vertical stripes tend to make rooms seem taller, while hor­i­zon­tal stripes make rooms ap­pear longer.

On the other hand, small dense pat­terns (es­pe­cially in dark colours) can make a room feel smaller.

Trim, mold­ing and even fur­ni­ture placed at var­i­ous heights can af­fect our per­cep­tions of space.

Max­i­mum space s-t-r-e-t-c-hi-n-g. Fur­ni­ture kept at the same height level can help make rooms ap­pear more spa­cious. Tip: Add a few sim­ple level break­ers to avoid dec­o­ra­tive bore­dom, such as a tall plant, some wall art, or an at­trac­tive floor light.

The same pal­ette trick. To make a small apart­ment or home seem larger, use the same pal­ette of colours through­out, but vary how you use them.

Tip: If us­ing two dif­fer­ent colours for your walls and trim, try re­peat­ing the colours in the con­nect­ing room, but use the trim colour on the walls, and the wall colour on the trim.

Corridor clip­per. Do you have a long, bor­ing corridor that seems never-end­ing? Paint the far wall in a deep, warm colour and it will mag­i­cally ap­pear to shorten.

Tip: To give a corridor a more spa­cious look, paint it with light, cool colours. To make it look even longer, mount a tall mir­ror at the end, mak­ing the space ap­pear to go on for­ever.

Low­er­ing ceil­ings pain­lessly. To lower a high ceil­ing, paint it a darker colour than the walls.

This gen­er­ally works even if the colour dif­fer­ence be­tween the two is fairly min­i­mal.

Tip: Try adding a chair rail at waist level around the perime­ter of the room, and paint both the rail and the wall be­low it a darker shade than the wall above.

Or, you can add a pic­ture rail about 18” or so be­low the ceil­ing and paint the rail in a darker shade to lead the eye down.

Rais­ing the roof. Got a ceil­ing that’s too low for com­fort?

Paint it a shade or two lighter than the walls.

Tip: In­stall crown mold­ing around the perime­ter of the ceil­ing, and paint it in a darker colour than the ceil­ing. It will help to draw the eye up­wards.

Hid­ing things you don’t like

Dark colours are great for dis­guis­ing things you want to hide — or ex­am­ple, clus­ters of pipes or met­al­work, ducts, vents, and doors or win­dows that are off-cen­tre, asym­met­ric, or just plain ugly.

Paint­ing ev­ery­thing in the area in the same deep shade can help to cam­ou­flage unattrac­tive fea­tures, mak­ing ev­ery­thing ap­pear to blend to­gether.

Try adding a chair at waist level.

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