Contrary to what some might think or say, wide plank flooring does NOT make your space look smaller. It's interesting, even though the planks are wider, because of the visual tricks wide plank plays on your eyes, the room often appears even larger than it is…not the other way around!
Wide planks in a small room can have the same effect as broad stripes on a person—they can make the room look bigger. Fewer seams means the space is less visually complicated and therefore less crowded.
Small Room: In a small room, narrow planks can create an elongated linear look which can make a small room look longer and formal. Whereas wide plank floors can make a small room feel cramped as a wide plank tends to have more grain and knots which can interfere with the poised ambiance of the room.
The key to making rooms look bigger with flooring starts with the diagonal rule. Diagonal lines work to create the illusion of more space, because when a person enters a room, their eyes are drawn to the widest part of a pattern—the same is true in art.
Light-colored flooring, such as white or light grey carpet, and even white-washed wood can give the appearance of a larger room. This is because light colors reflect light rather than absorbing it. Therefore, the lighter the flooring, the wider the room appears.
Wide plank flooring, lighter shades, in particular, are also gaining popularity in contemporary spaces. In large spaces, the wide planks and light wood can give an airy, open feel. Wide plank flooring also means fewer seams between boards and thus fewer interruptions of the natural lines of both the wood and the room.
Many home experts agree that the floor color should be darker than the walls. The rule generally applies because lighter walls and a dark floor make the room seem larger. Most homeowners prefer a spacious looking interior. However, the rule can change with low ceilings.
A light-colored flooring such as light oak or a light-colored carpet will make the room appear brighter and more open. The same applies to the ceiling—use a light color or white to "open up" the space above. Increase the appearance of the size of the room by adding wall mirrors.
Use contrasts and light colors that make rooms look bigger
Light and bright walls are more reflective, making a space feel open and airy, which helps maximize natural light's effect. Dark shades tend to absorb light, making rooms feel smaller. Accent walls to make a room look bigger is another way to go.
In the last 3-5 years, 5” boards have become the new “wide” standard. But even that won't do if you want the best looking floor. If you want an authentic rustic look, or an upscale modern feel, even wider planks will elevate the overall value and aesthetic of your room.
In big rooms you can normally get away with either narrow or wide wood floor boards, but ironically, while wide boards will make a small room look bigger, they can also make a big room seem smaller.
The simple answer: no wide plank floors aren't out of style. The long answer: other widths are making a comeback and with that, the feeling that wide planks might be the next thing to go seems reasonable.
These days, the standard width in hardwood flooring is the 4- or 5-inch wide plank. Curious minds may know that the standard has grown wider with time. These widths are often the go-to because the boards can fit nicely and effectively in most rooms.
Dark floors will not automatically make your room look smaller. While overloading a small space with dark colors will absorb light and make the space feel even smaller, dark floors can actually help to open a space up, if done correctly.
While some people think that they should match the floors throughout their homes for a sense of uniformity and space, it is unnecessary to do this. At Classic Floor Designs, we recommend that you consider mixing different types of wood on the floors throughout your house for a stunning result.
Which do you prefer – light or dark hardwood? Both dark and light floors work very well, and only you can choose which is best for you and your home. Dark floors tend to be more stylish and hide imperfections while light floors tend to show dirt less and last longer.
Decorating Tips for Color
Light and bright colored walls are more reflective making a room feel open and airy, and maximizing the effect of natural light. Dark colors, on the other hand, absorb light, making a room look smaller. Soft/bright color tones tend to make a room not only look bigger, but also more inviting.
Light color flooring tends to brighten up a space and make it feel larger. Bright and creamy floor tones can help modernize a small room, adding an element of airiness. Be sure to snag as much natural light as you can or install warm artificial lights to make your small space as attractive and inviting as possible.
Stripes—both vertical and horizontal—can create the illusion of more space. Vertical stripes help to draw the eye upward and horizontal stripes help to make a room seem wider.
If you paint the ceiling a darker color than the walls, it will make the ceiling feel closer and the room feel smaller. But if you paint the ceiling a lighter color than the walls, it will make the room feel bigger, even if you are using dark shades on the walls.