Unfortunately, once you finally move into your new pad, you start to notice some unpleasantries. In most cases, they have something to do with the lighting.
Perhaps the rooms seem somehow smaller and darker now that you’ve added your furniture? Or, maybe you failed to notice how little natural light there is in your new living room? At some point, you may even ask yourself, “Wasn’t there a window in this room when I bought the place?”
If a windowless room has got you down in the dumps, don’t get discouraged. When it comes to brightening up a room, the possibilities are endless, and you can find some of the best solutions right here!
A Few Considerations Before You Start
First things first — you need to consider your budget.
If you’re looking for cost-effective solutions, then shopping for new furniture probably isn’t the best option. However, painting your walls and adding some well-placed lights and decorations are both simple and practical solutions. More importantly, they can make a huge difference when it comes to your room’s lighting.
On the other hand, if you’re willing to go all out, you’ll find some great furniture and carpeting suggestions that can help brighten up your dull room.
6 Ways to Brighten a Dark Room Without Windows
1. Choose Your Paint Wisely
Finding the right paint can be frustrating, especially with so many colors and shades at your disposal. However, since the goal is to brighten up your room, there are a few fantastic choices that can turn your dreary den into a bright living space!
Painting your walls white is the obvious choice. However, if you’d like to give your room some personality, these alternative colors will help you do just that:
- Pastel Pink: Pastel pink can make any room look cute! This color is perfect for brightening up a dark room and also making it look larger than it is. However, avoid using hot pink shades, as they can have the opposite effect.
- Pale Yellow: Painting your room pale yellow will add a touch of warmth to the area without overwhelming you with its vibrance. This color is perfect for kitchens and even bedrooms, if you don’t have any natural light coming in. A bright yellow is also a good option. However, it requires plenty of artificial lighting to be effective.
- Powder Blue: Powder blue is well-suited to small windowless areas such as bathrooms, dining areas, pantries, etc. However, painting any room this color will give it a homely yet spacious look. Furthermore, pairing powder blue with white furniture will add a touch of sophistication, if that’s what you’re going for.
- Apricot Orange: Orange shades radiate warmth, and when paired with the right artificial lighting, apricot orange can make your room look spacious and luminous. You can also opt for bolder shades such as tangerine or pumpkin, as they will have the same radiant effect.
- Dusky Lavender: Dusky lavender may not seem like an obvious choice. However, paired with pastel-colored furniture, it can work wonders toward making your room brighter. What’s more, there are several gorgeous lavender shades to choose from, which gives you plenty of fun options to play around with.
Note: If you’re planning on painting the room yourself, don’t forget to cover your furniture and floors beforehand!
2. Use Mirrors to Your Advantage
Adding mirrors in the right places can help capture and project light even into the darkest corners of your room. Furthermore, mirrors will create the illusion that the room is more spacious than it actually is.
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The trick is to place your mirror at an angle that will help reflect the light onto other areas of the room.
Since you don’t have any natural lighting coming in, you’ll need to angle the mirror toward your ceiling light or other artificial lighting sources. For this to work, you’ll need to purchase a floor mirror, since it’s easier to adjust.
However, if you’re looking to brighten the room and add some depth to it, consider purchasing more than one mirror. Hang a few small ones on your walls, add a full-length mirror on the opposite side; go crazy! Remember, you can’t go wrong with mirrors!
Pro tip: Did you know you can simulate the look of a window by simply hanging some drapes over a large mirror? All you need to do is hang a large mirror on your wall, add the drapery on a rod over it, and voilà ― you now have a faux window!
See also: How to Hang Heavy Mirrors Without Nails
3. Add Artificial Lighting to Every Corner
If there’s one thing a windowless room needs, it’s plenty of artificial lighting! You’d be amazed at what proper light fixtures can do to make your room look stunning.
For starters, consider buying some spotlights, as they can be easily adjusted to light up any area. It’s best to place them in each corner of the room and direct them toward the center.
Next, it’s time to decide on a chandelier that will add some personality to the room. At this point, you need to consider what kind of aesthetic you’re hoping to achieve. For instance, if you want to create a modern aesthetic for the room, look for a chandelier with a chrome finish.
On the other hand, to achieve a rustic ambiance, opt for a chandelier made of wood and iron elements.
Finally, don’t forget to add a few table lamps as well. These will not only provide more light to the room but also add some coziness to your home.
4. Find the Right Furniture
If you’re starting from scratch, and you plan on purchasing all new furniture, you’re probably feeling a bit overwhelmed with all the options. But don’t think of that as a bad thing! You basically get to reinvent your home by turning a dull windowless room into a chic, colorful living space.
When it comes to buying furniture, here’s what you need to consider:
It’s always a good idea to make a list of your preferences before you go shopping. That way, you won’t be wandering around the store cluelessly. Moreover, it’s always easier to ask a salesperson for help if you know what you’re looking for.
You may not know this, but you can create the illusion of more space by opting to buy low-to-ground furniture! Not only that, but you can also make a room appear brighter.
Buying regular-sized or overstuffed furniture will make your dimly lit room look incredibly small. What’s more, it will cast plenty of unwanted shadows in every corner.
Also, don’t think for a second that a low-to-ground sofa is any less comfortable than a regular-sized one!
When choosing a color, you need to take into account the rest of the room. For instance, if your walls are white or beige, it’s best to choose furniture with colors that pop. Royal blue and red are good options, but you can also go for some muted shades of orange or possibly dark brown.
On the other hand, if your walls are colorful, you can opt to tone things down by choosing white or beige-colored furniture.
5. Brighten Up the Area With the Right Carpeting
Dark hardwood may look chic and polished, but it won’t do much to brighten up a room. In fact, it can often draw light out. On the other hand, light-colored laminate can open up the area and make it appear significantly bigger than it is.
But if you really want to make your room look stunning, I would recommend adding a carpet (or two, if you’re up for it).
Carpets are fantastic statement pieces, and they can help draw light into a room.
You can opt to cover the area with a room-sized rug if you don’t want to create sections in the room. However, runner rugs are also a good choice if you’d like to add more than one and create a fun floor design.
Once you decide on a size, choose a color that will complement the walls and help brighten up the room.
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Color-wise, I would recommend the following:
- Pink: If you chose to go with neutral-colored furniture, adding a splash of pink to your floor will make the room visually pop. Furthermore, pink will also make the room appear larger and brighter since the pink carpet will soak up the artificial lighting.
If you’re feeling bold, I would recommend going for a light hot pink, possibly cotton candy shade.
- Orange: If you’re not a fan of pink, orange is also a great choice. I would recommend a peach or apricot shade, as they are easier to color-coordinate with. However, if you’re ready to step it up a notch and really make the room light up, try out a pumpkin shade!
- Beige: Beige is an understated choice, but a good one nonetheless. Adding a beige carpet is a brilliant idea if you have brightly-colored furniture, as it will tie everything together nicely.
- White: Most people are scared of adding white carpeting, but hear me out. By adding some white to your floors, you can practically make the entire area look twice as big, and white is a major light-magnet!
If you’re hesitant about it, I recommend buying a small white area rug, just to test it out. Trust me, you’ll be amazed at the results!
- Multi-Color: If you’re having a hard time deciding on just one color, why not go for a multi-color carpet? There are so many fun patterns and designs to choose from, and you won’t go wrong with any of them!
Multi-color carpets can do wonders to brighten up a windowless room, and they go great with all types of furniture.
6. Add Decor to Tie Everything Together
There are two ways you can go about decorating your room: minimalistic or over the top. Personally, I say go all out!
Add plants, family photos, artwork, and anything you feel will express your style. Most people think that over-decorating a room will make it appear smaller and darker. However, the trick is finding the right placement for everything.
Artwork and Photos
When adding photos to your walls, make sure you lay them out in a clustered configuration. Also, if you want to draw attention to a specific piece of furniture, you can hang the photos just above it.
As for hanging artwork, I would recommend going for the salon-style configuration. This way, you can showcase your collection of differently-sized art neatly.
Adding a few plants here and there can really freshen up the look of your room. Make sure to place larger plants in the corners, while adding a few smaller ones to bookshelves and credenzas.
String lights can add a touch of magic to your windowless room and accentuate the decor. Hang them on your wall, or wrap them around an object you especially want to showcase.
I chose to highlight my artwork by hanging some string lights above each piece, and it looks stunning!
From choosing bright colors that will absorb the artificial lighting to simulating windows by hanging drapes over a mirror, when it comes to brightening up a windowless room, you have plenty of options.
The bottom line is that just because your room doesn’t have any natural light coming in, doesn’t mean you’re destined to live in perpetual darkness.
Ultimately, if you think about it, the fact that there are no windows means you have an extra wall at your disposal! That means you can go crazy with the decoration and show off your style.