If you were to ask a realtor what the most commonly complemented features are when clients tour houses, I bet an abundance of natural light would rank in the top five! Listen, most people don’t want to live in a dungeon. Being connected to nature has so many amazing benefits. Natural light from the sun has been proven to improve sleep quality, boost vitamin D levels in the body, and even help bone health and mood! In short, there are scientific reasons for sun-chasers like me! I love incorporating natural elements in design, but you can’t exactly “fake” sunlight! So, what can you do if you have a dark space that desperately needs light? Let’s talk about it in today’s blog. 

Go Light With Paint

This one is a no-brainer, but if you wish to lighten up a dark room, you definitely want to make thoughtful paint choices. Lighter colors will instantly make a space feel not only brighter, but also more open. White is probably the easiest and more likely option to select, and it’s a favorite of mine. It’s extremely versatile, which means you’ll never be limited in your style or decor choices. White paint as a backdrop truly allows all the other pieces in the room to shine, and any ambient sunlight will reflect off of it to maximize the natural brightness.

We’ve established that a bright color like white can add light to a room, but have you visited a paint store recently? There are thousands of various shades of white to choose from. Be sure to consider whether you want a warm or cool white. Go too cool and your space can appear sterile and cold. Too warm and you risk the rooms looking dingy and dull. See why hiring a designer is key? We can guide you through that process.

Materials Matter

As you move to find ways to add light to your spaces, don’t forget about the ways you can use materials to enhance the natural light you already get from windows. I opted for antiqued tiles in my kitchen space. The wall on which they are installed faces huge doors and windows. So when the sun shines, the rays bounce off the mirror-like surface of the tiles. As I’m sure you can imagine, that was by design. If you aren’t in the market to redo your tiled surfaces, that’s okay. Instead, take advantage of mirrors! Mirrors placed strategically in a room will reflect light similarly, and make a space feel brighter and bigger. That’s absolutely a win!

Any space with larger surfaces will benefit from lighter colored materials. White stone for countertops—both in bathrooms and kitchens, white, cream or tan area rugs for your floors, and even light, neutral colored backsplashes will all add that gleaming quality to your spaces. Don’t overthink it. Utilize materials in light colors to attract and reflect light in any room.

Chase the Sun

Perhaps the easiest way to bring more light into your home is to prioritize your windows. If you are lucky enough to have large beautiful windows, structure your seating and layout around them. One of the things I always advise clients to do is visit their new home at different times of the day. Why? Because if you desire to enjoy a cup of coffee while you watch the sunrise in the morning, you need to know where to position your nook. If you want a bright and sunny workspace because that makes you more productive, you need to know which room to make your office. In short, take advantage of the ambient light in your home.

Both my last home and the one I’m currently building feature skylights in the bathrooms. Despite contractors suggesting I get rid of them, I knew immediately that I wanted to create a spa-like space and bathe under the stars. I planned my blueprint around that. You might not have floor-to-ceiling windows, and you may not have skylights, but even small windows will emit light. Plan accordingly.

Bringing light to your home can be challenging when your rooms don’t get a lot of sunlight. Often, a few small changes like paint color, cabinetry choice or even just floor coverings can truly make the biggest difference! Use these tips and brighten up!

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