Making Smaller Rooms Feel Larger

People sometimes think we only work on very large houses or large rooms, but that is not always the case. We are sometimes tasked with working in smaller spaces such as compact office spaces or townhomes.   As a professional interior designer we are expert at designing three-dimensional spaces for a living and are adept at manipulating space to make smaller spaces feel larger than they really are.  How do we do it?  Here are six tips.

Light Walls

The lighter the walls, the larger the space will feel.  Light walls reflect light, which helps smaller rooms feel larger.  With the abundance of white or off white paint colors available you are sure to find one that is perfect for your project.

Six Sides Alike

Remember, each room has six sides, not four.  Don’t forget the floor and ceiling.  By having all six sides either light or dark helps to keep the room from looking chopped up. Good design will use either all light colored walls, floors and ceiling or all dark colored walls, floors and ceiling.


This is a fairly obvious tip since we all know that mirrors can make a room feel larger.  However you need to consider what the mirror will be reflecting.  If it is not something you want to see, then don’t use mirrors.

Simplify Your Materials and Finishes

Use a limited number of materials to make your space feel larger. The more surfaces in a room, the more the room will feel chopped up. Each time you change materials you define where one surface ends and the next begins, which can make the space feel smaller.


Remove oversized furnishings.  In small rooms, small-scale furniture will make a small room feel much larger.

Good Lighting

Good lighting has an enormous impact on the feel of your rooms.  Sadly it is often cut from the budget.  Plan to include 10% of your budget on lighting, especially in small rooms.

High Contrast Color Palette Trending in 2018

Interior designers know the importance of a room’s first impression. There are some spaces that, upon first glance, make your breath catch because its elements are so visually striking, yet still fit together. Other rooms seem to fall flat, almost like something is missing.

As always, one of the most important attributes to any space is the color scheme. In 2018 especially, color will undoubtedly play a crucial role in any space.

The use of high contrast color palettes is one of the secret ingredients that give memorable spaces big impact. When used correctly, this foundational design principle can add a huge dose of visual interest to your interiors while simultaneously pulling it together. Many consider it an essential component to any successful interior design.

In 2018, the use of bold and contrasting colors in any room will be trending upwards. Giving a room a complimentary color scheme or one that utilizes two shades on opposite ends of the color wheel — will create the strongest impact.  The use of white with any deep or vibrant hue, including timeless black and white, will certainly be a recurring theme. Some designers suggest the use of dark blue with milky white will be one of the most popular contrasting color schemes. This trend can be implemented in such a large variety of ways that it can be adapted to fit in almost any style of décor.

As with any design, keep in mind that in these spaces, one color needs to take a dominant role while the other accents it. Consider choosing one shade for the walls while the other is used in textiles, furniture and accessories.

For those who aren’t quite ready for their spaces to be that high contrast, there is a way to tone things down. You just need to add in additional neutrals. Doing so will give eyes a spot to rest while also providing a quiet background for your contrasting colors to pop out against.

We invite you to schedule a consultation to discuss your next interior design project and discover how Carole Lee Interiors can keep your interiors on trend.

Freshen Up for Spring

Following a long and lingering winter, the first few weeks of spring breathe fresh air into our outdoor surroundings. Concurrently, the beginning of spring is an ideal time for homeowners to step outside and attend to the exterior surfaces of their homes, outdoor living spaces, and gardens. Outdoor “spring cleaning” projects can unfold in various forms: essential home maintenance efforts, design updates and improvements, and garden makeovers.

Essential home maintenance tasks ensure that the exterior surfaces of your home remain safe, preserved, and functional. A spring checklist of items includes: examining the roof for missing or damaged shingles, cleaning the gutters, servicing the air-conditioning unit, cleaning the windows and their screens, and power washing the deck and patio surfaces. Exterior design updates, such as a fresh coat of facade paint, will also enliven your home’s curb appeal. This season, a few trending façade paint combinations include: slate grey/white/deep turquoise, and white putty/taupe/olive green. In addition, installing new rail planters, and lush greenery like ferns and vine covers will accentuate your garden.

The Benefits of Whole House Standby Generators

Standby generators are smart and effective pieces of equipment for homeowners to consider purchasing in order to avoid the effects and inconveniences of power outages.

What is a standby generator?

Standby generators are back up power sources that are permanently installed on a platform in your yard. Their size and build are comparable to a central air conditioning unit. Standby generators automatically detect an outage within the municipal power grid and subsequently provide seamless backup power to your home for an extended period of time.

How does as standby generator work?

Standby generators are equipped with two primary components: an automatic transfer switch (ATS), and generator. ATS technology identifies an outage in the municipal power grid, disconnects your home from the grid, and promptly connects the generator to your home’s electrical panel. The generator is powered by a local natural gas supply and will deliver high-quality power for an unlimited amount of time. Once the municipal power has been restored, ATS technology prompts the generator to disconnect and shutdown.

What are the positive attributes of standby generators? 

Standby generators protect the functionality of your home’s heating and cooling systems during a power outage. In addition, they allow vital home systems to operate during an outage to include sump pumps, well pumps, large appliances and security systems. Standby generators are ideal for families with small children or family members who rely on electricity to power medical devices, as well people who run a business out of their home.

Carole Lee Interiors provides comprehensive electrical services to include the installation of standby generators. At Carole Lee Interiors, we work with sophisticated contractors to help our client’s select a standby generator that is compatible with their home and ensure a seamless installation process.

12 Steps For A ‘Light & Airy’ Feel

If the light and airy look is what you’re aiming to achieve, a large open space makes it easy to obtain breezy. But if your home or room is smaller, you’ll need the following interior design tips to trick the eye:

Use lighter colors on the floor and ceiling. Light oak or a light-colored carpet can make a room appear more open. White ceilings “open up” the space overhead – be sure your ceiling is lighter than the walls.

Select a light design palette, as opposed to bright or dark. Cool colors (shades of blue, green, and purple) generally make a room look larger than warm shades (red, orange, and yellow). However, warm hues will work if they are very pale.

Go monochromatic for furniture, rugs, and walls. Match the wall color to your floor or carpet color to blend the edges of the room together and visually enlarge the space. Think whites, beiges, and neutrals. Select different shads and textures of your single color.

All-white doesn’t have to be boring or sterile. Mix and match finishes to keep it interesting. Try a blueish-white with a matte finish on the ceiling and a creamy ivory with satin finish on the walls. A white wall paint with a warm, pinkish cast keeps the space open while delivering a warm look. Finish tonal layering by giving doors, windows and trim a fresh coat of high-gloss white. Even just a touch of tint in a white paint can give you perceived spaciousness!

Lots and lots of lighting! Recessed spot lighting is ideal for small spaces. Skylights and solar tubes are also helpful, if you can install them.

For impact or statement pieces, use throw pillows and accessories, but keep them limited to avoid a cluttered feel.

Add one large piece of artwork for a statement piece. This is better in a small space than a group of small paintings. Just be sure the piece isn’t oversized for the area.

Glass or lucite keeps the appearance of an open and free space. Incorporate it as a dining table, end table, or coffee table. Or consider glass as your tile backsplash.

Visual balance is imperative – don’t overwhelm a tiny room with a large or too-bright or overly patterned element.

Metallics reflect and help rooms feel larger. Consider using a metallic paint color as an accent wall or use metallic accent pieces or furniture.

Add wall mirrors to increase the appearance of the size of the room. They reflect light and color for added ambiance.