YOU might be surprised by just how radically a fresh coat of paint can change the appearance of your home.
Pro tips from interior designers demonstrate how experimenting with finishes, placement, and application techniques can make rooms look bigger and decor seem more expensive.
Interior design experts who spoke to Homes and Gardens shared their favorite tricks for elevating a living space with just paint.
MAKE A ROOM LOOK BIGGER
Using paint to make a room appear larger is much simpler than you may expect. Being mindful of color is the key, said designer Irene Gunter.
Try painting a wall with a warm, cozy color, like dark pink, and switching to a lighter tone towards the top of the wall – mixing the main color with white paint will achieve the effect.
"This paint technique not only adds interest but also blurs the edges of the room, making the ceiling look higher and the room look bigger," Gunter said.
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Or, if you're applying a bright color to your walls, continue it on to the ceiling, an often-overlooked part of the room.
"All too often they are an afterthought," designer Nicola Harding told the outlet.
She recalled a client's dining room, which was very small but had plenty of natural light. A coat of vibrant blue paint on the walls and ceiling made the space seem larger.
"Using statement paint tricks and ideas on the ceiling helped extend the walls in this dining room," Harding explained.
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Pale colors are also a great way to expand a room with high-use workstations, like a kitchen.
Try applying a light color over your sink or prep counter, which will keep the space from feeling cramped as you cook.
FAKE FINISHES AND TEXTURES
You don't need to pay for luxe elements in your home, as long as you have access to paint that can complement your rooms' decor.
For example, textured paint on the walls, applied with a sponge or mixed with materials before application, can create depth, which is especially helpful in narrow hallways.
A coat of detailed trim around your fireplace can emulate the look of expensive marble.
And fresh paint can update your old bedroom headboard, said designer Sarah Stemp, founder of Sascal Studio.
Stemp refurbished old canvas to give a client's headboard a new color scheme and match the walls.
Try painting your headboard, using similar tones to the walls, and layering slightly paler and darker shades with textured brushstrokes.
UPDATE OLDER HOMES
If you live in an older home, paint can make it look more modern and cover up any aesthetic flaws in the construction.
White paint, for example, acts as an eraser when used correctly, making old ceilings with exposed beams look soft and intentional.
"Decorative paint finishes are becoming increasingly popular," said interior designer Kate Guinness, and you might even see them instead of things like plaster.
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"We are continuing to introduce paint details in place of solid moldings, for example, or to incorporate extra points of interest and disguise architectural flaws," Guinness said.
If the molding or other details in your home look dated, try giving them a fresh coat of paint to add a contemporary touch. This is especially effective on paneled walls or slim borders that would otherwise clash with the style of the room.
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