5 Genius Hacks to Fake Your Way to a Brighter Room

published Sep 8, 2019
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Credit: Minette Hand

As most design enthusiasts know, good lighting—or lack thereof—has the power to make or break your space. But what’s an amateur decorator to do when your home is unusually dark?

Whether your space is running short on natural light or you’re stuck with super moody walls, living in uncharacteristically dark quarters can be a little unsettling. One false design decision and you’re living in a real-life Doomsville. Ugh.

The good news is it doesn’t have to be that way. That’s right, just because you have a dark space doesn’t mean you have to live in gloom. To help, we’re sharing five fresh ways to brighten up your home.

Decorate with White Accents

Don’t get us wrong, we love the look of dark furniture. However, this design decision usually works best when the space in question has plenty of natural light. If you only have one window and dark walls, you may be better off purchasing furniture and accessories in a lighter color palette.

In this brick-clad East Village apartment, the use of white accoutrements gives the room a light, airy feel, which is a bonus if you’re also working with a small space.

Credit: Minette Hand

Ditch the Drapes

Sorry, curtain enthusiasts: Drapes can add a certain heaviness that isn’t always necessary. In fact, we actually think this Brooklyn bedroom looks just fine without ’em because it helps bring more natural light into the place. Though the dark accent wall does most of the talking, a delicate white light fixture also helps brightens up the space.

Credit: Julia Steele

Seek Enlightenment With Edison Bulbs

Edison bulbs are everywhere right now—and we are totally here for it. How cool is the display seen above in this Nashville bungalow? Not only does it arm your room with plenty of light, but it also offers a punch of personality.

Credit: Minette Hand

Work Wonders With Wallpaper

We truly believe that removable wallpaper can do wonders! If you can’t paint over the dark walls in your rental, it’s still possible that you’re able to add some removable wallpaper in a lighter print. As this Brooklyn home proves, a single accent wall can make a world’s difference.

Credit: Minette Hand

Embrace Your Green Thumb

Is there anything plants can’t do? To make your home feel warm and inviting, go ahead and grab a couple of green friends—or just one a la this Virginia house tour. Plus, the vibrant green will be a sunny contrast to your dark walls.

Psst…if your space is slacking on the natural light factor, pick up some lifelike faux plants.