Interior Bedrooms

21 Ways to Make a Small Bedroom Big

Do you covet a larger master bedroom, kids' room, or guest room but are stuck with a small space that won't stretch to fit? Use these 21 DIY bedroom ideas to turn your pint-size bedrooms into palatial quarters with panache.

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Dressed for Success ; photography by Claire Esparros

If your bedroom feels claustrophobic and closed off, the culprit may be your overdressed windows. Reveal your windows’ inner (and outer) light by removing curtains and rolling up the blinds. If you don’t dare to go bare, add window film or lightweight curtains to create a bright, airy ambience—optimal for beauty rest.

Related: 10 Things Your Bedroom Might Be Missing

Get Hooked

Has your bedroom been hit by the double whammy of insufficient storage and underwhelming decor? Solve two design dilemmas with one off-the-wall idea. Adorn the walls with decorative garment hooks that will elegantly embellish them while keeping clothes and accessories off the floor.

Related: 7 Clever Ways for Hooks to Streamline Your Life

Clearheaded Closet

In a cramped closet, turn negative space into a positive by filling the underutilized upper and lower regions with freestanding racks, hooks, and decorative boxes to stash shoes, scarves, and knickknacks. Still tight on space? Hang up on clutter with ultrathin hangers for streamlined garment storage.

Related: Organize Closets with 11 Things You Already Own

Standing Invitation

Do you lack the space or the budget for a traditional standing desk? By affixing shelf brackets to the walls and securing precut wooden boards onto the brackets, you can build a wraparound workspace that leaves the rest of the room open to your furniture—and your imagination.

Related: 9 Easy Designs for a DIY Desk

Window of Opportunity

Windowsills are often a dead space in a room, but they can become functional and decorative amenities if you extend them to serve as floating shelves. Using a plywood board of the same thickness as the windowsill, attach the bottom of the board to the base of the windowsill, then fill the shelf with precious mementos and vibrant indoor plants.

Related: 10 Insanely Creative Shelves You Can DIY

Fill the Void

Empty nooks and style-repelling recesses can rob a tiny bedroom of space and ambience. But you can transform even the most awkward alcove with an array of shelves and wall-mounted artwork

Related: 10 Simple Ingredients for a Very Comfortable Bed

Multipurpose Marvel

Clever furnishings can turn even a tiny bedroom corner into an ultrafunctional two-in-one space. This Murphy bed hangs from the kitchen wall, but you can implement this idea anywhere, including in shared bedrooms, guest rooms, and kids’ rooms.

Related: 11 Lessons to Learn from Airbnb’s Tiniest Homes

Monochromatic Magic; photographed by Lauren Logan

Bold and bright paint or patterned wallpaper may attract the eye, but it can also subtract space from an already small bedroom. Choose a monochromatic color scheme to create the illusion of wide open space and allow your furniture and decor to take center stage. 

Related: 10 Color Picks to Set Any Mood in Your Bedroom

Doors to Adore

Zillow Digs home in Ponte Vedra Beach, FL

Traditional doors cut into living space, making them less than ideal for tight quarters. Open a new doorway to style and space by replacing them with less-intrusive pocket, French, or sliding doors. Made to mimic aged barn wood, these elegant sliders offer a rustic counterpoint to soothing, monochromatic walls.

Related: 7 Ways to Make Your New House Look Old

Bedlam Banished

If loose toys and trinkets litter your kids’ bedroom, put the clutter to rest in these underbed rolling carts made from plywood and assembled with nails. Attach casters to the bottom of the carts so you can just roll them into position for space-smart storage day and night!

Related: 18 Clever Storage Solutions You Can DIY for Free

Legs for Miles

Bottom-heavy bed frames, armoires, and benches look clunky and outsized in a small space. Give these pieces legs—literally! By adding new furniture legs to existing pieces, you’ll draw the eye upward, giving the impression of a cleaner, airier, and, yes, larger room. If that’s not reason enough, at least you’ll have opened up a new spot below to shelter clutter

Related: 20 Insanely Easy Ways to Build Your Own Furniture

Artful Dodger

When it comes to decorating a space-challenged bedroom, less is surprisingly more. Forgo expansive murals and wall-mounted photo galleries for meaningful expressions or minimalist pendants hung above the bed.

Related: 10 Ways to Fill a Blank Wall for Under $20

Head Start

Don’t waste precious bedside floor space for a nightstand! Buy or build a headboard-and-shelf-in-one, which can be made from simple woodworking materials. This headboard, assembled from precut and stained walnut planks, can house books, an alarm clock, or your charging station.

Related: 14 Easy Ways to Make Your Own Headboard

Guiding Light

A cramped bedroom devoid of light can be made to look and feel bigger by simply boosting the natural illumination. Place mirrors opposite existing light sources like windows or lamps to double their brightness. Choose mirrors with playful geometric frames to further boost the bright and cheery atmosphere.

Related: 10 Classic Ways to Brighten a Dark Room

Lofty Idea

Due to their depth and width, shelves are typically viewed as space-stealers in small bedrooms. But when situated above doors and windows like these floating shelves are, they become the go-to location for lesser-used collectibles and hard-to-wrangle knickknacks.

Related: 10 Novel DIYs for a Better Bookshelf

Lighten Up

Floor and table lamps may be the most obvious options for illuminating a dark bedroom, but they steal space where it’s most needed. Wall sconces or pendant lights looped over existing wall hooks can brighten a room while drawing the eye upward to its more spacious regions.

Related: 15 Lazy Ways to Make a Big Change in Your Home

Perfect Match

Install pint-size wall-mounted shelves alongside the bed and then paint them the same color as the walls to give your DIY project a faux built-in finish. Line the shelves with books, personal effects, and houseplants to fool your guests—and maybe even yourself—into thinking they’re seeing floating objects!

Related: 8 Nightstands You Don’t Need to Buy

Curtain Call

Open storage, whether in the form of floating shelves or freestanding coat racks, creates its own visual clutter in cramped quarters. Conceal these units with lightweight curtains that hide your storage secret but let natural light shine through.

Related: 8 Rules to Break for an Organized Home


Although it’s a must-have in a home entertainment center, a TV doesn’t have to be a permanent fixture on your bedroom floor. Attach a mounting bracket onto your flat-screen, secure a TV wall-mount bracket to the wall, and hang your TV up to make your next streaming session—and your room—far more streamlined.

Related: 9 Smarter Spots for the TV

In the Clear

If your floor, side tables, and hampers are never free from clutter, give them a rest by returning your belongings to shelves, tables, and attractive storage canisters. Clearing clutter takes minutes and instantly reveals hidden space that can inspire yet another DIY project.

Related: 7 Things You Need to Know Before Painting Your Walls White

Far Out

Zillow Digs home in Santa Fe, NM

When situated by the doorway, large furniture pieces like beds and armoires act as a barrier to entry. Position these more imposing figures as far away as possible from the doorway to maximize space and whisk your guests into the cozy comforts of the room.

Related: The 7 Room Layout Mistakes Almost Everyone Makes

Big Ideas for a Small Room

Don’t feel boxed in by a small bedroom. Take these creative ideas to make the most of a cozy space.