Interior Decorating Inspiration: Brightening up Dark Spaces within Your Home

In current interior decorating inspiration trends, you will find that spaces are featuring a bright minimalist design aesthetic. This is because a dark home can feel claustrophobic and uninviting. By brightening up your home, you and your family will be able to enjoy a space that seems more ventilated, spacious and homely.

To help you brighten up your home we have created this simple guide, outlining interior design techniques used by experts that are suitable for all budget ranges. Even those of you who may live in a rental will find some of these tips valuable for creating a lighter, brighter space.

Get rid of clutter

uncluttered kitchen space

Clutter can obstruct the light flow within your rooms. By giving your house a good spring cleaning and ditching the items you don’t need, you can open up your space and get rid of dust collecting objects.

Using lightly coloured floor to ceiling shelving will create the illusion of taller ceilings and will eliminate unused space above shelves. Place messy clutter that you want to keep, such as old magazines, tennis balls, pet toys, paperwork, crafts and children's books into storage boxes that can be neatly stacked in your shelving.

Paint the walls

white wall with wall painting roll

Dark walls will absorb light and make your rooms look small. If you have dark walls in your home, consider giving them a fresh coat of paint in a light tone. Using light tones will allow light to bounce from these surfaces. The best colour to achieve evenly distributed light is Matte white, avoid glossy paints as this will pinpoint the lights reflection.

If you have white furniture and want to create contrast, simply choose a light grey or beige toned paint  for light to reflect off of the surfaces.

Use light curtains

sheer light coloured curtains in living room

Heavy curtains are good for keeping in warmth and keeping out light in bedrooms.  For other rooms in your house, we recommend installing sheer, lightweight curtains in light coloured tones. This will give you privacy when the curtains are closed, but enable light to filter through and create a more open space.   

Change to light coloured furniture

room with light coloured curtains and bleached wood furniture

Dark furniture could be the culprit for creating the dark appearance of your home. To create a brighter space, consider selecting lighter pieces of furniture or giving your furniture a coat of white paint. If you want to go for a more rustic look, you can sand back a little of the paint on the edges.

Selecting furniture with glossy or metallic detailing, for example, metallic knobs and gloss finishing are little additional details to look out for in finding furniture that will add to the brightness of your home.

Install skylight windows

skylight windows

Installing skylights can work wonders for brightening up your spaces that have no access to natural light. Although this renovation can seem expensive, installing skylights will save you cash on your electricity bill from not having to run your lights during the day.

Put glass panels on doors

turquoise glass panelled door

Glass panelled doors are an excellent way of distributing natural light throughout the home. This is also fantastic for confining cooling or heating to one place, while letting you enjoy the natural light during the day.

You can apply this to your front door as well to light up your entrance hallway. We recommend painting your doors in a light tone, as darker wood doors tend to absorb light and make entrance areas look dark.

Add a bright floor rug

living room with bright patterned floor rug

A brightly coloured rug can do wonders for a dark room. Try to select a floor rug that has solid blocks of bright or light colours to get the best results. If you have dark coloured tiles or floor boarding, this is a cheaper way to add light to your rooms without having to replace your floor covering. A bright rug will also add a pop of colour to a plain looking room.

Install quality lighting

quality pendant light

Installing the right lighting is essential for brightening up your home. Ensure you are purchasing high-quality lighting as this can serve as an investment. LED light bulbs are ideal as they are long lasting and energy efficient.  

We suggest using pendant lights and upwards facing torch lights to reflect off of your rooms surfaces. Using multiple lights in each room is also recommended as this will help in distributing the brightness evenly throughout the space.

Choose the right coffee tables

designer coffee table


You can add light to your living room by selecting a glass or reflective coffee table. Try placing the coffee table directly beneath your pendant light to get the best reflection. By using this technique, you can maximise the brightness in rooms that may not have enough natural light.

Add mirrors

mirror with light wooden frame in dressing room

Mirrors can be an inexpensive and stylish way of brightening up your home. It’s a good idea to shop around for second-hand mirrors online as you can save a lot of money and find some interesting retro-vintage designs. Place these facing windows that emit natural light, you’ll be surprised at how much these can help add light to dark rooms and give an illusion of greater space.

Decorate with plants

indoor planting in studio

Last on our list of interior decorating inspiration tips to brighten up your home, is to add some plants. Plants help brighten up rooms by adding their vibrant colour. They also come with other benefits including improving your well-being, producing better air quality and making your rooms look more lively, and nature inspired. They can be placed anywhere, and if you are lacking floor space, you can always hang them from the ceiling or the walls.

Smith&Smith is an Australian owned company that specialises in providing customers with high quality, vintage-retro lighting for any office or home interiors. All products come with a generous 3-year warranty that is above the Australian standard of only 12 months.

All of Smith&Smith products are handmade by expert craftsmen who produce high-quality and aesthetically pleasing LED light bulbs and pendant lights. All lighting products are thoroughly tested to meet the Australian electrical safety compliance requirements.  

You can see the full range here or if you have any questions contact us today!

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