Do you cherish your outdoor space but feel like it is a little small? A common complaint for those in condos and apartments is that their balcony feels small and cramped, keeping them from enjoying it to the fullest. While you probably can’t expand your balcony, you can make it feel bigger and therefore be more enjoyable, even for a guest or two. Here are some ways to boost how big your balcony feels.
The first mistake people make is buying furniture that is too big for the space. You might feel like you’re maximizing the space, but you’re really making it feel even smaller. Try to buy appropriately sized furniture that will leave you with enough room to walk one side of it. If you’re having trouble, limit the number of objects on the balcony. Some smart furniture options for small balconies include:
- A single recliner or large chair
- Two small chairs and a small table
- A single hammock
- A folding table and two chairs
- A chaise lounge
- One couch
- One small couch and a stool
- One small couch and a table that can tuck under it
Mirrors can make a space feel larger by simply visually tricking you into feeling like there is more space than there is, thanks to the reflection. On balconies, they are most effective when you can hang them on any side walls you have, which you can look at while sitting on the balcony. Still, mirrors on the back wall, behind you, might also help.
Balconies that are limited in a horizontal sense might be larger in a vertical one. If you have plenty of room above your head,then drawing attention upwards can help the whole space feel larger. There are several things you can hang to do this:
- Small potted plants
- Ivy or other vines
- Paper decorations
- Fabric awnings
When the eyes see stripes pointing in a direction, that direction is exaggerated. This is a mild visual trick that you can use to make your space look larger. Lay down a striped rug, and your eye will be drawn the full length of the balcony, making it seem longer. Or you can lay the stripes horizontally, drawing the eye out to the view beyond the balcony. That will work to make it feel larger too.
Choose rugs with high contrast stripes to make the effect more prominent. Think more a combination of black and white than shades of grey.
Plastic and Glass
Transparent objects help to make the space feel larger. When possible, choose clear plastic and glass tables and chairs for your space. They will also allow light to spread across the balcony better, which can be great if you’re also growing plants on the balcony.
Speaking of plants, overwhelming small balconies with lots of plants can make it seem smaller. To add greenery without taking up space, choose hanging baskets that sit outside the railing, not inside it. Choose pots that are thin and tall. Or use trellises and add plants that don’t need much space for roots.