Windowless spaces such as basements and bathrooms can pose a tricky decorating challenge. Simply adding a few lighting fixtures is not always an adequate solution for making these dark rooms as functional as they need to be in the home. Fortunately, there are a few design tricks that can transform any windowless room from dim to radiant.
The first basic step is to choose a light wall color. Dark tones will absorb what light there is and make the room feel smaller. Painting the walls a light shade will instantly brighten the room and create a more open appearance to the space. To enhance the use of the walls, opt for gloss or semi-gloss paint. The shine from the paint will help reflect light back into the room and make it seem brighter.
This same principle can be applied to the room’s furnishings and décor. Furniture in deep tones looks heavy and adds a sense of weight to a room. The best thing to do is look for surfaces and materials such as glass or metal that has a reflective quality to them. Place items all around the area that catch light and send it back into the space. Lamps with metallic stands are the perfect accessory for windowless rooms as the light from the lamp is immediately amplified. Decorating with mirrors is an easy and ideal way to manipulate light and give the illusion of a bigger area as well. For best results, hang mirrors on opposite walls so that the light will bounce back and forth across the room. Tables with glass tops and metal legs, sofas and chairs with metal stud detailing, and fabrics with sheen or metallic thread are excellent for subtly maximizing the light in a room while still providing functionality to the space.
One of the main issues of not having windows is the lack of focal point and depth they provide. Artwork can provide a view that perhaps a window could not. Choosing bright artwork for the windowless space is the simplest way to create a similar experience. The bright colors will not only draw the eye’s attention, but will add lightness and depth of perception to the room. Installing gallery lighting over the art piece is a wonderful way to make the most of the art and add another light source to the room.
No windowless room is doomed to feel like a cave. The key is to take advantage of available light sources with the materials that furnish the space. Light colors, shiny surfaces, and vibrant accessories are the winning combination for bringing a home out of the dark ages and into the light.