July 13, 2022 5 min read

Mirrors are like magic. Even small mirrors have the power to add more light and more space to a dark room in an instant.

The trick to capturing all the natural light from outside and welcoming it into your room, though, is knowing how to use mirrors in the right way.

So, today we'll tell you exactly how to do it using all kinds of mirrors in all kinds of spaces to reflect light around a dark room and instantly make the place come alive!

Strategic Mirror Placement

When placing mirrors in a dark room, you need to not only make them a focal point so they catch and reflect as much natural light as possible, but you also need to think strategically.

It's all about the way your mirrors interact with the light in your room - think of your mirrors as an additional light source.

It can catch natural sunlight and act just as a table lamp does in terms of brightening up the room.

The absolute  best spot when you place mirrors is directly in front of, or just to the side of, windows with lots of natural sunlight.

Here, the natural light will enter the room, hit the mirror, and then be dispersed, helping to brighten up your dark room.

So, think about where you can place your mirror on the wall to catch the most light. It's a clever trick to increase light, and one of the oldest in the book.

Mirror Choice

Choosing the right mirror to place across from a window to create the illusion of more space and more light is tricky, but there are some helpful tips to brighten your space even more below.

Large Mirrors

A large mirror is best in your living space or living room to maximise your light, ask any interior designer.

A larger mirror will also capture more of the beautiful view outside, and help bring that in too. When using a single mirror to catch light, make sure it's a larger one.

It's the best way to make sure it's reflecting the largest amount of light possible to create the sense that the room is much brighter and larger than it really is.

Multiple Mirrors

Sometimes one long mirror isn't going to do it, so opt for multiple instead. Not only is a mirror wall or a gallery wall of mirrors really stylish, it works as  decorative items (looking almost like wall art) and as a light source in your room.

Place multiple along one wall, close to a window, roughly the same width apart. Even in a smaller room, this will make a huge difference without taking up too much space.

We'd recommend using a round mirror when hanging multiple mirrors to reflect light. Frameless mirrors would also work, but you want to avoid using a full-length mirror in a gallery wall because it will dominate the space and actually make your small room feel smaller.

Floor Length Mirrors

Traditional  floor length mirrors work great, though, in a bedroom especially. Why? Because not only can it reflect the light from the window in the daytime, but it'll also reflect light from table lamps at night too, creating more ambient lighting and making the small space feel larger, and more cosy.

So long as the light sources in your bedroom have a yellow light, then your floor-length wall mirror will work amazingly and help create a brighter space.

A  floor-length mirror would also work great in a living room, especially between two windows. This has many benefits, including creating the illusion that there are three windows, making the room instantly feel more bright.

Besides that, having your mirror face the same way as the windows can really open up small rooms, all whilst increasing the amount of light reflecting into the space.

Standing Mirrors

It's so easy to overlook the humble standing mirror when your focus is on getting as much light as possible into your room, but these small mirrors are often versatile.

Any interior designer will tell you that the key to not getting bored with your space is variety, and standing mirrors are often the most varied.

Not only that, but because they're small, you can use them to chase the natural sunlight as it moves across your room.

Just place a standing mirror on an end table or coffee table in your living room, and then twist it ever so slightly as the sun moves through the room throughout the day. That means your room can be bright, no matter the time of day!

Overmantel Mirrors

An overmantel mirror is another great, but stationary, idea when you're thinking about where to hang a mirror to create a sense of visual space and light.

A  mirror hung over the mantel won't capture sun all day (unless you're very lucky with the direction your living room faces), but when it does, it'll brighten the whole place up.

Overmantel mirrors work great when you want to reflect as much light as possible.

Mastering the Illusion

In case you haven't realised yet, today's post is mostly about trickery. You need to hang mirrors in clever places so where they hang and the light reflects can be used to brighten your space.

Hanging mirrors along the wall of a small kitchen, for example, might be all you need to make the place feel bigger. Again, it's about how you create the idea of your room being brighter, bigger, or having more lighting, without it actually being bigger or having more lighting (but still, these tricks will certainly make it brighter). 

Here are some quick-fire tips for mastering the lighting illusion:

  • Mirrored furniture works just as well
  • Mirrors by light sources (like a table lamp) will still reflect the light and make your space brighter
  • Use a mirror facing a window for maximum reflection
  • Space your mirrors when using multiple to catch as much light as possible
  • A mirror next to a window will make the space feel lighter

Final takeaway

The only way to brighten your room with a mirror is to just get it hanging on the wall. Experiment. If it doesn't work, take the mirror down and move it to another wall.

In our example today, it sounds easy - and it is - but the best thing to do is try things out at home, think strategically, reflect as much light as you possibly can, and your room will automatically brighten! It might just take a moment to perfect it...

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