How To Make Small Rooms Feel Bigger With Windows

Updated:  January 20, 2023

If you love your home but find that some rooms feel dark and cramped, natural light can do wonders to create a more pleasant, open feel to any space. Although it seems obvious a bigger window or more windows will brighten up a room, it’s all about understanding window types and placement to make the most impact. Here we explain how to make small rooms feel bigger with windows.

How To Make Small Rooms Feel Bigger With Windows

The Best Windows For Small Rooms With Small Outer Walls

Best-Windows-For-Small-Rooms-With-Small-Outer-WallsReally small rooms with smaller outer walls can be a challenge when it comes to window installation. A great space-saver for these types of rooms is the sliding window, as the weight of the sash allows you to choose the largest possible window size. This is because the weight of the window is evenly distributed across the bottom frame. As a result, you can go big without worrying about structural concerns.

Windows For Small Rooms With Low Ceilings

Windows-For-Small-Rooms-With-Low-Ceilings-Weaver-ExteriorLow ceilings can complicate your decision for small room windows. In this case, you want to add a feeling of airiness which requires more emphasis on the limited vertical space. The best way to do this is to install wider windows if possible. This draws the eye’s attention across the room instead of up and down, and makes the low ceilings feel less constricting. In this case, the traditional picture window works best.

Small Room Windows In Darker Spaces

Small-Room-Windows-In-Darker-Spaces-How-To-Make-A-Small-Room-Feel-Bigger-With-WindowsDark rooms create a cramped feeling that can be completely resolved by adding more windows or a larger window. This immediately creates a lighter, airier feel to the room. If your current window is in good condition, an affordable solution is to install casement windows on either side. Casement windows open outwards to the left or right of the window frame. They have a sleek, modern style with uninterrupted glass panes that work well in any room. By adding side lights, you create more light and a sense of balance. If the room feels stuffy, casement windows also improve air circulation thanks to the open angle that catches the breeze and directs it into the room.

The Best Windows For Small Rooms’ Bump-Outs

Best-Windows-For-Small-Rooms-Bump-OutsIf budget allows, replacing your windows with a bay or bow window is an excellent use of a small space. A traditional bay window consists of three window panels extending outwards. There is a large picture window in the center and a casement window on either side. Bow windows consist of several equal window panels to create a rounder, semi-circular outcropping. Many people prefer them over bay windows because of their softer angles. Both create a cozy space ideal for a window seat, an alcove for extra seating in a kitchen or dining room, or a perfect spot for a chair or bench.

You can also consider installing these windows as part of a “bump-out,” which extends your space outwards a little further by about half a metre. Keep in mind it’s easier to install a window seat or banquette in a bay window as you don’t have to contend with rounded installation. Angles are always easier to work with than circular designs. One more note on the bay and bow window: As a bonus, they also create more interest in the interior of your home.

Small Room Windows Wall

Small-Room-Window-Wall-Best-Windows-For-Small-RoomsThe window wall is the ultimate room enlarger, creating the illusion of space with plenty of light. This is the go-to choice for small windows with great views. It allows you to make the most of the exterior wall, creating floor-to-ceiling, wall-to-wall windows. They can be customized windows to create an interesting architectural detail or just a combination of standard windows that bring in more light.

Picture windows are the most common, which are combined with either casements or double-hung windows. It really depends on the style of your home and the effect you wish to create. Be sure all windows are Low-e, Energy Star windows to reduce the impact of the sun’s powerful rays and to maintain comfortable temperatures in the room.

Using Casement Windows For Small Rooms

Using-Casement-Windows-For-Small-Rooms-How-To-Make-A-Small-Room-Feel-Bigger-With-WindowsAs mentioned, the full panel of the casement window provides uninterrupted light in your space. Unlike sash windows, which are split in half visually, the casement window is perfect in areas where wall space is limited. You gain more light, improve ventilation, and can either limit or enhance your view depending on what your window overlooks.

Think Higher For Small Room Windows

Think-Higher-For-Small-Room-WindowsThe challenge of limited wall space in small rooms can make it difficult to install more windows or bigger windows. A good solution to overcome limited wall space where furniture placement poses a challenge and make a small room look bigger is to install higher windows in the room. A short, wide window placed closer to the ceiling draws the eye upwards to create space vertically, while the width draws the eyes outwards.

You can choose a horizontally oriented awning window if you want a window that opens to draw in more light without interfering with furniture placement in a tight space. Horizontally-oriented windows across the top of the wall also show you nothing but blue sky, which works very well if you find your view less than pleasing. You also get that connection with nature via sky and light, without worrying about the neighbours.

Leverage Both Walls For Corner Rooms

Leverage-Both-Walls-For-Corner-Rooms-How-To-Make-Small-Rooms-Feel-Bigger-With-WindowsMany homeowners miss the opportunity to add windows on both sides of a corner room. You have the option to choose high awnings as mentioned above, narrow casements or larger windows if privacy and view aren’t an issue.

Customize Windows For Roof Peaks

Customize-Windows-For-Roof-Peaks-Best-Windows-For-Small-RoomsIf you have an awkward wall with a peak or cathedral ceiling, it is not uncommon for builders to take the cheaper route and install a square window below the point where the peak begins. Customized windows allow you to take full advantage of the entire wall with a window designed to fit snuggly and dramatically into the peak of the window.

Nothing opens up a space more than natural light. For more information on windows and installation costs, request a free quote here.


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Weaver has over two decades of experience and provides comprehensive installation services for windows, doors, and aluminum in the Barrie region, making it a convenient option for all project sizes.