10 Tips to Make a Small Bedroom Look Great

Bedroom / Last Updated - June 21, 2021

A small bedroom can feel surprisingly overwhelming. Without room for everything, it can be challenging to determine what belongs and where to arrange it. But small bedrooms have great potential! From color schemes to furniture arrangement, we’ve got ten tips to make a small bedroom look great! 

Ten tips to make a small bedroom look great

1. Let in the Light 

let light in

Not only does a well-lit room look more spacious, but letting in the light also makes your bedroom and everything in it look cleaner and brighter. If you can, skip the drapes and blinds altogether. If that’s not an option -- for privacy reasons, perhaps -- then outfit your windows with only a Roman- or bamboo-style shade that can be rolled up during the day. If they don’t look too cluttered, add a lamp or two on a nightstand or dresser. Rooms look bigger when they are well lit.  

2. Clear the Clutter 

bedroom organization

The easiest thing you can do to make your small bedroom look great is to clear away any clutter. Hide collections and smaller items in attractive baskets either underneath the bed or on a bookshelf. Next, make sure the top of the dresser and other catch-all surfaces are clear of everything except a lamp, a photograph or small plant, and maybe a book or two. Once you’ve ensured everything is off the floor and only the necessities are left on shelves, you are likely to find your bedroom already looks bigger and better organized. 

3. Put Your Furniture to Work 

small bedroom 2

Nothing makes a bedroom look small and chaotic with too much furniture. A great way to cut down on unnecessary pieces is to make sure your furniture can handle the double duty. For example, is your bed just a bed, or does it have space underneath to hold some baskets or totes? Can your dresser double as a nightstand? Utilizing double-duty furniture means fewer large pieces taking up valuable bedroom real estate. 

4. Go Light or Go Dark -- They Both Work!

dark room

White is reflective, so a small bedroom painted white will feel bright, airy, and calm. But contrary to popular belief, a small bedroom painted a dark color like navy or charcoal can also look great. Whether you choose to go light or dark, make sure you paint both the walls and the trim the same shade. This will prompt the illusion of a larger space. 

5. Make the Bed the Focal Point 

bedroom focal

Whether your room is small or palatial, the bed should be the focal point of a bedroom. First, identify the space’s main wall, then center your bed right in the middle. A headboard is a great way to anchor the bed to its space, while a small collection of decorative pillows will draw the eye. A properly sized piece of artwork above the bed can also add a nice touch.  

6. Add a Mirror 

bedroom light
If you add just one decorative element to your small bedroom to make it look great, then add a mirror. Mirrors reflect both light and the view and give the perception of more space. For maximum effect, angle the mirror towards your focal point to create an illusion of depth. Natural places to add a mirror include above a dresser, a bookshelf, or a headboard. 

7. Arrange Thoughtfully 

A thoughtful furniture arrangement is important for any room, big or small, but it’s especially important for a small bedroom. First, the more floor you can see, the larger your room will feel, limiting your furniture to just what is necessary for you. Second, as you are arranging, keep two to three inches of space between the wall and pieces like nightstands, dressers, desks, and chairs. 

Finally, arrange your bedroom as if you are creating a pathway through half of your room. Besides your centered bed, leave half of the room nearest the bedroom door free of any other large furniture pieces. Then arrange any other furniture, like a dresser and bookshelf, on the other side of the room. It may seem counterintuitive, but this unbalanced layout will make your bedroom look larger.  

8. Think Vertically

small bedroom
Rooms that seem larger and taller tend to appear more interesting. In your small bedroom, entice your eye upwards with an eye-catching vertical component. A tall (but uncluttered!) bookshelf is a great option for something vertical, as are curtains with the rod placed as high as where the wall meets the ceiling. If you’re a shiplap fan, situating each board vertically on a focal wall can also achieve the effect of making a room look bigger.    

9. Stick to a Color Scheme 

bedroom color
Accessorize your small bedroom with linens and decor of the same color family, such as blues and white, reds, oranges, and natural wood tones. Keeping cool colors with cool and warm colors with warm will create a sense of calm and continuity in your space and is an easy way to make your small bedroom look great.  

10. Anchor the Room with an Area Rug 

area rug
Even in a small bedroom, an area rug can add a sense of warmth and interest. And it’s worth taking the time to find the perfect rug. Choose an area rug that complements your chosen color scheme without being too distracting. The rug should be part of the room’s interest, not the only interest. When placed perpendicularly under the bed, there should be enough space on the bed’s sides and front to rest your feet comfortably. A coordinating area rug of the proper size will act as an important anchor and can be the key to making your small bedroom look great!  

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About the author

Bella has a Bachelors degree in interior design, is a master gardener. She designs nourishing outdoor & indoor spaces guided by the practice of Feng Shui.


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