A windowless room lacks light, something every room needs. Or at the very least, the space needs the feeling that natural light generates. Often windows can’t be included in additions, finished basement rooms, garage attachments, attics or bathrooms. Although, the natural light will be missed, the situation can be remedied in a number of ways. Selections of light, paint color, furniture and accessories can easily transform the space into a striking, appealing room. When it’s done right, nobody misses the windows. So here are nine tricks to brighten up a windowless room:
1. Use mirrors
Strategically placed mirrors make a space appear larger than it is, and more open. Position the mirror so it reflects the most light. When you’re working with a low ceiling, use a large mirror and hang it within a few inches of the ceiling line for the best results.
2. Choose the right paint
Select a single shade of white or a very light color for the walls and ceiling to blur the edges and shed more light on the area. Texture also makes a difference in the airiness so choose satin, semi gloss or high gloss paint.
3. Hang drapery
Cover one of the walls with drapery material to give the illusion that a window is behind those drapes. This technique works well in a bedroom where the drapery material creates a background for the bed.
4. Install a glass door
For rooms other than bedrooms, swap a solid wood door for a glass paned one. This lets in the light outside the room that comes from the hallway or nearby rooms. As a bonus, the glass door also makes the room appear more open.
5. Scale down the furniture
Keep furnishings simple and to a minimum. You want to see as much open area as possible. Buy light colors to create a fresh, airy feeling. Opting for multipurpose furniture will give you more storage and more seating, but not take up extra space.
6. Minimize accessories
Place a single focal piece in the room like a sculpture, piece of art or picture frame. A large, healthy houseplant looks better than a huge grouping of small plants. Add lamps for more light sources and put them behind the sofa or near a bookcase to simulate light coming from a window. Lamps should also give off light that’s evenly distributed through a room to mimic daylight.
7. Add under-cabinet lights
In a windowless kitchen, installing lights under the cabinets only brightens the room. Those lights also make the food preparation area brighter and the room appears deeper.
8. Paint a mural
Create your own view by painting a landscape, beach scene or blue skies across one wall. Wallpaper depicting scenery can also be used as a faux window.
9. Add reflective surfaces
Mount pictures in metallic frames and spread them gallery style on one wall. Or frame one large photo or print in a metallic frame and hang it in place of a window. The reflection of the frames gives off light and breaks up the wall like a window would.
“Selections of light, paint color, furniture and accessories can easily transform the space into a striking, appealing room.”
“Opting for multipurpose furniture will give you more storage and more seating.”