Design Dilemma Solved: 7 Ways to Add Visual Height to a Room

published Mar 8, 2014
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(Image credit: Le Belle Photographie )

Something feeling “off” about one of your rooms? It could be the space is a little too heavy on the low-end. You might need a visual weight adjustment. Relocating certain design details high-up in a space can create a more sophisticated, balanced room. There are ideas you can try that will take only a little time to tackle, and there are some that might take the afternoon. You decide what your room might need and how much time you have this weekend!

(Image credit: Apartment Therapy)

Do in a few minutes: Raise the height of something
An easy way to do this is to move a big plant from the floor to a (sturdy) table top. Or add a few (shade-loving, if it’s not near a window) plants to an existing shelf. Lean a tall or narrow art piece on a table top or shelf. Spotted via Yellow Trace.

(Image credit: Emil Evans)

Do in under an hour: Make a mobile
It’s a simple fix! Hang a graphic mobile from the corner of a room and watch as your room becomes more visually balanced. Not in the DIY mood? Consider a cluster of colorfully hung paper lanterns to grab attention.

(Image credit: Arthur Garcia-Clemente)

Do in an hour or so: Add (high) curtains
If you’ve already got curtains, this may be tough if you measured them perfectly to hit the floor just right. But if you don’t have any yet or yours have room for adjusting, hang curtains and curtain rods at a height that will draw your eye upwards in a room.

(Image credit: Adrienne Breaux)

Do in under an hour or two: Rearrange existing art
If you’ve got a wall art collage, consider a rearrangement that might have it take up higher real estate. If you don’t have any wall collages, think about stacking a few art pieces on top of one another vertically to reach new wall heights.

(Image credit: Jason Loper)

Involves buying something: Add a bookcase, tall lamp, bold ceiling light
If your room has room for it, a nice bookcase (we’ve got the best of 2014 right here) or other tall furniture piece (hey, ladders work, too) is a great way to add some height to a room. But the same look can be achieved with lights, too. Go for floor lamps like arc lamps that reach up tall, or finally add in a bold hanging ceiling light if you can to grab attention.

(Image credit: Le Belle Photographie )

Do in an afternoon: Consider a wall paint or pattern for the ceiling
Yes we’ve suggested it before, but it’s the cure-all for all manner of design ails (including boring rooms, low ceilings and this, a too bottom-heavy space). Adding color to a ceiling — or if you’re feeling wild, pattern like a wallpaper or wall stickers — will add some visual weight to the top of a room.

(Image credit: Apartment Therapy)

Do in an afternoon: Install wall shelves
Not only will they boost the visual height of your room, they’re mega functional too! And look good in any type of room. We’ve got the Ultimate Shelving Shopping Guide if you’re feeling ambitious today.

How have you spread your design up high in your home? What elements delight from the top half of your rooms?