5 affordable ways to brighten a dark space

1 • REFLECTIVE MEDIUMS

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Use reflective mediums to magnify the light you have. In addition to wall and floor mirrors, consider mirrored furniture, picture frames, boxes and sconces – candle sconces require no electrical wiring! If possible, try to place reflective surfaces parallel to a natural light source.

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West Elm Faceted Mirror Side Table $199 // Ballard Atoll Mirror $199 
Target Mirrored Demilune Console $189.99 // Z Gallerie Mirrored Sconce $79.95

2 • HOUSEPLANTS

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Houseplants have so many benefits: purifying the air, increasing oxygen and humidity levels and they add color and texture to a room! Use low-light varieties where natural light is limited, including: snake plants, philodendron, zeezee succulent, arrowhead vine, pothos, cast iron plant, dieffenbachia, peperomia and chinese evergreen.

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Philodendron $16.98 // Snake Plant  $16.96 // Pothos $18.96

3 • GLASS AND LUCITE FURNITURE

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Referring back to my Small Space Living posts (here and here), lucite and glass furniture take up less visual residency making the room feel lighter.

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Overstock Clear Acrylic Chairs $270.29 for 2 // Pottery Barn Tanner Console $399
CB2 Peekaboo Coffee Table $279

4 • PAINT

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Floors: Paint floors with a quality deck paint containing polyurethane, or use light-colored area rugs.
Walls: Keep in mind dark walls tend to absorb light where bright-colored walls reflect it. In addition to color, lacquered walls bounce light beautifully and are usually best achieved by a professional (which can be costly). I used Fine Paints of Europe Hollandlac Brilliant in a small bathroom recently and the results were very close to a true lacquer.
Ceilings: Choose a shade of white with a slight hint of light blue, green or yellow in a flat finish to warm up the room.

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Benjamin Moore Arborcoat Solid Deck Paint $45
Fine Paints of Europe Hollandlac Brilliant $35 // Farrow & Ball Cabbage White $39.50

5 • LIGHTING

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Combine multiple lighting sources – table and floor lamps, ceiling pendents, sconces, etc. – to evenly distribute light throughout the room.

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Ikea Maskros Pendant $49.99 // Pottery Barn Lotus Table Tamp $199 (on sale!) 
West Elm Branch Floor Lamp $399

What do you do to brighten a dark space? Any tips I need to know?

Images: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8

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