How to Make a Narrow Room Look Wider with Paint [2024]

Sep 11, 2023 | 0 comments

Are you tired of feeling cramped in your narrow room? Do you dream of a more spacious and inviting space? Well, the good news is that you can achieve the illusion of a wider room with a little paint magic! In this article, “How to Make a Narrow Room Look Wider with Paint,” we will guide you through the process of visually expanding your space and transforming it into a more open and airy environment. You’ll discover practical tips and examples that will help you bring your vision to life. So, let’s dive in and explore how you can create a wider and more welcoming room using the power of paint!

Imagine stepping into your cozy bedroom and instantly feeling a sense of openness and tranquility. The walls are bathed in soft, light hues that reflect natural light, making the room feel more spacious. The narrowness of the space seems to melt away as your eyes are drawn to the subtle vertical stripes on one wall, adding height and elongation. As you walk around, you notice the trim and moldings painted in the same color as the walls, seamlessly blending in and creating an uninterrupted flow. The accent wall, strategically painted in a contrasting shade, adds depth and character without compromising the sense of width. The glossy finish on the walls reflects light, casting a radiant glow throughout the room. And finally, the flooring, carefully chosen to complement the paint colors, enhances the overall illusion of a wider space. With these paint techniques, you have successfully transformed your once-narrow room into a haven of openness and comfort.

In the following sections, we will delve into the step-by-step process of making a narrow room look wider with paint. From color selection and stripe painting to coordinating with trim and moldings, we will cover it all. So, get ready to unleash your creativity and embark on the journey of transforming your narrow room into a visually expansive oasis. Let’s begin!

Why Should You Consider Making Your Narrow Room Look Wider?

Making a narrow room look wider can have a significant impact on the overall ambiance and functionality of the space. Here are a few reasons why you should consider transforming your narrow room into a visually expansive environment:

  • Enhanced Comfort: A narrow room can often feel cramped and confining, limiting your ability to move around freely and enjoy the space. By making it look wider, you create a more comfortable and inviting atmosphere, allowing for better circulation and a sense of openness.
  • Improved Visual Appeal: A wider room creates a more aesthetically pleasing environment. It gives the impression of spaciousness and balance, making the room appear more proportional and visually appealing. This can greatly enhance your overall satisfaction with the space.
  • Increased Functionality: Narrow rooms can present challenges when it comes to furniture placement and functionality. By visually expanding the space, you open up possibilities for better furniture arrangement, storage solutions, and the inclusion of additional elements that may have been previously impractical.
  • Positive Psychological Impact: Our environment plays a significant role in our mental well-being. A narrow room can feel constricting and may even evoke feelings of claustrophobia or unease. In contrast, a wider room promotes a sense of calmness, relaxation, and improved mood, contributing to a more positive and enjoyable living experience.
  • Versatile Design Options: When a room appears wider, you have more design flexibility. You can experiment with different decor styles, play with color schemes, and incorporate various elements without overwhelming the space. This opens up opportunities for creativity and personal expression in your interior design choices.
  • Increased Property Value: A visually wider room can add value to your property. Potential buyers or renters are often attracted to spaces that feel spacious and well-designed. By investing in making your narrow room look wider, you can potentially increase the appeal and marketability of your home.

How to Make a Narrow Room Look Wider with Paint?

Making a narrow room look wider can be achieved through clever paint choices and techniques. By employing the right strategies, you can visually expand the space and create a more open and inviting atmosphere. Here are some tips on how to make a narrow room look wider with paint:

1. Choose Light Colors: 

Choose Light Colors

Opt for light, neutral paint colors for the walls and ceiling. Light shades, such as whites, creams, pastels, or soft grays, reflect more natural light and create an airy feel. These hues help to visually push the walls outward, giving the illusion of a wider space.

For instance, selecting a soft, pale blue for the walls and a creamy white for the ceiling can work wonders in making your narrow room appear wider. These light colors reflect natural light, brighten the space, and create an open and airy atmosphere. The walls and ceiling will recede visually, creating the perception of a broader area.

Read More:How To Design A Warm And Minimalist House?

2. Use Monochromatic Schemes: 

Use Monochromatic Schemes

Consider using a monochromatic color scheme by selecting different shades of the same color for the walls, trim, and ceiling. This approach creates a seamless flow and avoids visual breaks, making the room appear more expansive.

For example, you can opt for a monochromatic color scheme using various shades of light gray. Paint the walls a soft gray, choose a slightly lighter shade for the trim, and continue with a pale gray for the ceiling. By maintaining a consistent color palette throughout the room, you eliminate visual distractions and create a cohesive look. The absence of contrasting colors or breaks visually expands the space, giving the impression of a wider room.

3. Paint Vertical Stripes: 

Paint Vertical Stripes

Vertical stripes can add height and create an illusion of elongation. Paint thin, vertical stripes on one or more walls using colors that are slightly lighter or darker than the base color. The stripes draw the eye upward, creating a sense of height and width.

For instance, if you have a narrow living room, you can paint vertical stripes on one of the longer walls. Choose a light gray as the base color and select a slightly darker shade of gray for the stripes. Use painter’s tape to create thin, evenly spaced vertical stripes from floor to ceiling. When you step back and view the room, the stripes will visually elongate the wall, giving the perception of increased height and width. This simple technique adds a touch of visual interest while making the room look wider.

Here are a few additional techniques to create an illusion of height and width in a room:

  • Hang Curtains High and Wide: Mount curtain rods closer to the ceiling rather than directly above the windows. Hang curtains that are wider than the actual window frame. This draws the eye upward and makes the windows appear larger, giving the illusion of higher ceilings and a wider space.
  • Use Mirrors Strategically: Place mirrors on walls opposite windows or sources of natural light. The mirrors will reflect light and create the perception of depth, making the room appear larger and more spacious. Additionally, choose oversized mirrors or arrange multiple smaller mirrors in a gallery-style arrangement to further enhance the illusion.
  • Opt for Low Furniture: Choose furniture with lower profiles, such as sofas and chairs with shorter legs. This allows for more visual space above the furniture, making the ceilings appear higher. Additionally, consider furniture that is narrower in width to create a sense of openness and maximize floor space.
  • Embrace Vertical Elements: Incorporate vertical elements in your room design, such as tall bookcases, floor-to-ceiling artwork, or vertical paneling. These elements draw the eye upward and create a sense of height, making the room feel more expansive.
  • Keep the Space Clutter-Free: Clutter can make a room feel smaller and more cramped. Keep the space organized and minimize unnecessary items. Use storage solutions to keep belongings out of sight, allowing the room to feel more open and spacious.
  • Utilize Lighting Techniques: Adequate lighting is essential to create an illusion of space. Use a combination of natural and artificial lighting to brighten the room. Consider recessed lighting, track lighting, or wall sconces to direct light upwards and create a sense of height. Avoid heavy or dark window treatments that block natural light.

4. Create an Accent Wall: 

Create an Accent Wall

Choose one wall, preferably the farthest or shortest wall in the room, and paint it with a bolder, contrasting color. This draws attention to the depth of the room rather than its width, giving the perception of a more balanced space.

For example, in a narrow bedroom, you can choose the wall behind the headboard as the accent wall. Paint it with a deep, rich navy blue while keeping the other walls a lighter shade of gray. The contrasting color of the accent wall creates visual interest and draws attention to the depth of the room rather than its width. This focal point adds a sense of dimension and balance, making the room feel more visually appealing and less narrow.

Here are a few color options that can work well for an accent wall in a narrow room:

  • Warm Earth Tones: Consider using warm earth tones like terracotta, burnt orange, or deep mustard yellow. These colors add warmth and depth to the space while creating a visually striking accent wall.
  • Rich Jewel Tones: Jewel tones such as emerald green, sapphire blue, or amethyst purple can create a luxurious and dramatic accent wall. These vibrant colors add depth and character to the room, making it feel more visually expansive.
  • Dark Neutrals: Deep, dark neutrals like charcoal gray, espresso brown, or navy blue can create a sophisticated and modern accent wall. These colors add depth and create a focal point without overwhelming the space.
  • Vibrant Pops of Color: If you prefer a bold and energetic look, consider using vibrant pops of color like electric blue, lime green, or vibrant coral for your accent wall. These colors can add a playful and lively touch to the room, making it feel more vibrant and visually interesting.

5. Extend Paint to Trim and Moldings: 

Extend Paint to Trim and Moldings

Paint the trim, moldings, and baseboards in the same color as the walls or a lighter shade. This technique blurs the visual boundaries between the walls and trim, making the room feel more expansive.

For example, if you have a narrow dining room, you can paint both the walls and the trim in a soft, creamy white color. By extending the paint color to the trim and moldings, you create a seamless and unified look. The lack of contrasting colors between the walls and trim blurs the visual boundaries, giving the illusion of a wider space. This technique creates a cohesive and open atmosphere, making the room feel more expansive and inviting.

6. Utilize Glossy Finishes: 

Utilize Glossy Finishes

Consider using glossy or semi-gloss paint finishes on the walls. These finishes reflect light, creating a brighter and more open ambiance. Avoid using flat or matte finishes, as they tend to absorb light and can make the space feel smaller.

For instance, in a narrow hallway, you can opt for a glossy or semi-gloss paint finish on the walls. Choose a light, neutral color such as a pale beige or soft gray, and apply a glossy paint finish. The glossy surface will reflect light, creating a brighter and more open ambiance. The reflective quality of the finish helps to bounce light around the space, making it feel larger and more inviting. Avoid using flat or matte finishes in narrow areas, as they can absorb light and make the space appear smaller and more confined.

Here are a few types of paint finishes that are commonly used and recommended for small spaces:

  • Satin Finish: Satin finishes have a subtle sheen that falls between matte and semi-gloss finishes. They provide a smooth and easy-to-clean surface while offering a moderate level of reflectivity. Satin finishes are often used in high-traffic areas and can work well in small spaces like bathrooms or kitchens.
  • Semi-Gloss Finish: Semi-gloss finishes have a higher sheen and reflectivity compared to satin finishes. They offer a durable and washable surface that is resistant to moisture and stains. Semi-gloss finishes are commonly used in trim, moldings, and doors, but they can also be applied to walls in small spaces to enhance light reflection and create a visually open environment.
  • High-Gloss Finish: High-gloss finishes provide the highest level of reflectivity and shine. They create a smooth and mirror-like surface that can make a small space appear more expansive. However, it’s important to note that high-gloss finishes tend to highlight imperfections on walls, so proper surface preparation is crucial. High-gloss finishes are often used on doors, cabinets, and furniture accents.

When selecting a specific brand or type of glossy paint finish, it’s recommended to consult with your local paint store or professional painters. They can provide expert advice based on the available options in your area and your specific needs and preferences. Additionally, consider reading customer reviews and checking for paint products that are specifically designed for small spaces or offer features like enhanced light reflection and washability.

Read More:How To Add Value To Your Home Before Selling It?

7. Coordinate with Flooring 

Coordinate with Flooring 

Choose flooring that complements the paint colors and enhances the sense of width. Lighter flooring, such as light-colored wood or pale tiles, can visually expand the room and create a cohesive look.

For example, in a narrow living room, you can choose to install light-colored hardwood flooring. Opt for a pale oak or maple with a natural or whitewashed finish. The light tones of the flooring will visually expand the room, making it feel wider and more open. This choice of flooring complements the paint colors on the walls, creating a cohesive and harmonious look. The combination of light flooring and coordinating paint colors enhances the sense of width and creates a visually pleasing environment in the room.

Creating a cohesive look between the flooring and the paint colors in a room involves considering the following factors:

  • Color Harmony: Choose colors that harmonize with each other. If you have light-colored flooring, consider selecting paint colors that complement or coordinate with the tones of the flooring. For example, if you have light wood flooring, you might opt for paint colors in a similar color family, such as soft beige or warm taupe.
  • Contrast or Monochromatic Approach: Decide whether you want to create contrast or a monochromatic look. Contrasting colors can create visual interest and definition between the flooring and walls. For instance, pairing light-colored flooring with a deep, rich wall color can create a striking contrast. On the other hand, a monochromatic approach involves using similar or complementary shades for both the flooring and walls, resulting in a more cohesive and seamless appearance.
  • Undertones: Pay attention to the undertones in both the flooring and paint colors. Undertones are subtle hints of color that can affect how colors interact with each other. For example, if your flooring has warm undertones, consider selecting paint colors with similar warm undertones to create harmony. Similarly, cool-toned flooring can be complemented by paint colors with cool undertones.
  • Light Reflectivity: Consider the light reflectivity of both the flooring and paint colors. Lighter flooring and paint colors tend to reflect more light, creating a brighter and more open space. If you want to enhance the sense of width and openness, choosing light-colored flooring and paint can help achieve that effect.
  • Samples and Visualizing: It’s important to obtain samples of both the flooring and paint colors to see how they interact in the actual space. Test them side by side and observe how they look in different lighting conditions throughout the day. This will allow you to make informed decisions and ensure that the flooring and paint colors work well together.


In conclusion, by utilizing the power of paint and implementing specific techniques, as outlined in the article “How to Make a Narrow Room Look Wider with Paint,” you can create the illusion of a wider and more welcoming room. Through the strategic use of light hues, vertical stripes, coordinated trim and moldings, contrasting accent walls, glossy finishes, and complementary flooring, you can transform your narrow space into an open and airy environment. These paint techniques, coupled with the step-by-step process provided in the article, allow you to achieve a sense of spaciousness and tranquility, ultimately creating a visually expansive oasis within your own home. So, get ready to unleash your creativity and embark on the journey of transforming your narrow room into a haven of openness and comfort. Let the power of paint guide you in achieving your vision!

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