1. Look up: A great way of creating the illusion of higher ceilings is to paint the walls, trims and ceiling in similar shades of one colour. Hanging curtains closer to the ceiling as well as extending the curtains rod beyond the window can trick our eyes into thinking that the window is larger and the ceiling higher.
2. Keep things slim: Avoid low sofas with heavy legs and wide arms as they visually constrict a space. You can always swap your sofa for two chaise lounges or a loveseat, which – paired with some armless chairs – will give you enough seating without it feeling overcrowded.
3. Keep the flooring flowing: A continuous floor is one of the easiest tricks to make spaces appear larger and airier, while breaking up rooms with different flooring materials can achieve the opposite effect.
4. Smart use of glass and mirrors: Replacing wooden doors with glass-panelled or French doors can visually open the space and let the light in. Generous-sized standing mirrors are another great way to bounce light around your room.
5. Accessorise smart: Don’t feel like you have to fill up every surface, shelf or corner with accessories – let the room breathe.
6. Don’t be afraid of black: Black can blur boundaries so finite edges aren’t as clear. Be careful not to overdo the shade, but a black wall, floor or ceiling can give the illusion of space because it’s more difficult to see where the room finishes. Black fences are fantastic in small planted gardens, as you can’t see where the garden ends.
7. Frame views of small spaces carefully: If you have a small courtyard, don’t install huge open glass windows overlooking it as it will make the edges of your site obvious. Select views to highlight the garden and edit out your fences.
8. Layer space: Lining up windows and doors so you can see through to other rooms and gardens gives you a sense of extended space and connection with the outdoors.