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Inspire me - 17 February 2018

Art: For Big or Small Spaces

Homes, like art, come in all sorts of shapes and sizes. And often, whilst we may fantasise about moving into lofty mansions or stunning penthouses, the reality is that we tend to live in either a smaller space than we'd ideally like, or a slightly awkward one!

How do I decorate my small space?

If you live in a small space you may automatically think of the downside: tight spaces, not enough storage and of course, less wall space to fill with glorious art. But in actual fact, a few well-placed prints, paintings or sculptures can really maximise your space, and make it feel roomier, lighter and bigger than before.

Just because your space is on the small side, doesn't mean that it's not designed to house beautiful pieces of original artwork.

How do I make my large room feel cosy?

On the flip-side, perhaps you've found yourself somewhere a little larger than you ever thought possible, and need some help injecting it with cosiness, intrigue and creativity. Likewise, sometimes having a particularly large room but a smaller budget, can be tricky in terms of literally filling the walls and making the room feel homey.

With these common dilemmas firmly in mind, here's our definitive list of ways to really make the most of your space, whatever its size. Read on to discover what works best in different sized homes.

Decorating large spaces

Decorating large homes and creating a sense of comfort and cosiness in big spaces can be tricky. But art is a great way to add some impact, whatever your budget.


A post shared by ELLE DECOR (@elledecor) on

Bold is Best

It may sound simple, but a great trick is to break up large expanses of wall with a bold art display. Going with one single statement piece helps bring the whole room into proportion and make the space feel balanced, even if it's feeling a little empty. Anchoring your room with a statement piece really helps avoids the feeling of having lots of disconnected elements or clutter. Whilst for many, this might be using a large piece of furniture, we believe that a bright piece of art is the perfect anchor, and a great focal point to design a room's interior around.


We know that in a perfect world, you'd be able to fill a large wall or airy room with canvases, prints and paintings galore. But there are some great, affordable tricks to fill up wall space without breaking the bank, with a couple of carefully invested pieces of art incorporated into a salon hang.

Take one or two key pieces, place above a sofa or large piece of furniture, add a bright wall-colour, and surround with plants, fabric wall-hangings, home photographs, ceramics and anything else that may inject a little life into your salon hang. Surrounding one piece with different elements will expand and intensify its impact, perhaps accentuating different colours and textures within the piece, and creating a beautiful, statement hang - whilst adding a sense of cosiness to your space.

Invest in some perfect prints

Cool Blues by Vicky Oldfield, hand coloured collagraph print

A salon hang with lots of prints is a brilliant, affordable way to bring a room together, and make it feel more homey. Our online shop has plenty of examples of photographs or limited edition prints which are bound to inject some intrigue into your larger space. And don't forget - there's lots of different ways to display unframed prints too, if you'd rather not frame your work. Check out our blog post on unusual ways to display artwork.

Be creative with your framing

Or, if you find a beautiful unframed print or photograph, then why not take framing into your own hands and choose something a little wacky and original? A bold and alternative frame, particularly if you opt for something substantially larger than the original artwork, will help fill a wall in no time, adding some of your personality to your space.

Decorating small spaces

Perhaps you live in a studio flat the size of a shoebox, have one room of your own to decorate, or want to revitalise a cosy nook in your home? Whatever the size, there's plenty of ways to revitalise your space using art work.


A post shared by MySmallSpace (@mysmallspace) on

Create Zones

An excellent way to help compartmentalise a smaller space, is creating specific "zones" within it. With this in mind, divide your space into different segments depending on how they're used - work, sleep, relax or eat, for example. Art seems like a great way to reinforce this idea, adding a few framed monochrome prints in one corner perhaps, juxtaposing with a statement painting in another area of the room.

Use Colour

Furthermore, using colour creatively is a great way to differentiate separate spaces; We love the idea of using bright colours such as oranges or reds in one area, and something a little more soothing, like greys or greens in another, making the space seem larger and less claustrophobic. Specific "colour" areas can be supplemented with flowers and fauna, or home accessories - the sky's the limit!

Go vertical

A great way to give the illusion of space is to accentuate the higher spaces in your home. Displaying a collection of artwork above eye level is a great way to give a sense of height to a room and some extra space. Adding a pretty print or canvas above a door or within a set of shelves is a brilliant way to add an illusion of depth and some extra space to a room, and likewise a vertical gallery hang can suggest a higher ceiling.


And Remember…

Whether a space is small or big is, of course, subjective - so one person's mini space might feel like a castle to another! Either way, if you're feeling like your space isn't quite the right size for you, don't underestimate how adding some art of your own choosing along with some careful placement can make a big difference, and add some of your own personality to the space.

Why not browse art online to see what calls to you, click here to visit our online shop »

Did you know that we hold fairs in 10 cities worldwide? To browse art in person click here »


Main Image:
Art-lovers selecting artwork at the 2017 Battersea Autumn edition.

Images from first to last:
@ElleDecor, a stunning bold print in a large living room.
Vicky Oldfield, Cool Blues, Hand coloured collagraph print on paper, £325, Wychwood Art.
@MySmallSpace, what a lovely vertical hang, within a small dining room space.

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