Save on Pinterest

Vintage Family Handyman Project from 1988: How to Make a Small Room Seem Larger

Family Handyman has helped DIYers improve their homes since 1951. As we celebrate our 70th anniversary, here are some vintage tips from 1988.

1 / 6
Vintage 1988 Family Handyman project on making a room look biggerFamily Handyman

Simple, Inexpensive Ways To Make a Room Seem Larger

As Family Handyman celebrates its 70th anniversary, we’re sharing vintage tips from past issues of the magazine. This piece from 1988 explains how to make a small room look larger — a goal we still chase today. The first tip: Skip boring white walls.

2 / 6
Vintage 1988 Family Handyman project on making a room look biggerFamily Handyman

Using Color To Set a Mood

The handy chart on this page helps homeowners pick a paint color based on the mood they wish to convey. It also explains the risks of overuse and offers room suggestions. Light paint colors are best for a small room unless it has lots of natural light.

3 / 6
Vintage 1988 Family Handyman project on making a room look biggerFamily Handyman

Tasteful Finishing Touches

Use lines to trick the eye. Create lines with paint, wainscoting or moldings, as shown above. It’s easy to install molding and trendy wood trim yourself.

4 / 6
Vintage 1988 Family Handyman project on making a room look biggerFamily Handyman

Choose Paint Wisely

This vintage Family Handyman piece recommends painting trim in a satin or semi-gloss enamel. Glossy paint gives the illusion of more light, making your room look bigger and brighter.

5 / 6
Vintage 1988 Family Handyman project on making a room look biggerFamily Handyman

Smart Storage

Busting clutter is the most effective way to make a small room appear larger. Smart storage solutions will help you keep your stuff organized and out of sight. This piece suggests starting with a closet storage system.

6 / 6
Vintage 1988 Family Handyman project on making a room look biggerFamily Handyman

Mirrors as Decor

Mirrors aren’t just for the bathroom. They are an elegant piece of decor that makes any room feel bigger. Hang a mirror in the entryway, opposite from a window or anywhere you might hang artwork.

For more of our amazing vintage Family Handyman content, visit our 70th Anniversary Page.