Light colors, such as yellow, eggshell, white and off-white, make a room look bigger. Conversely, dark colors like slate and brown usually make a small space seem even smaller.
Jewel tones are also useful for making a small room look bigger, according to Country Living. Amethyst violet, garnet red and sapphire or topaz blue are just a few options.
For those who prefer softer paint colors, light neutrals always work well in small spaces. Pale gray, beige or yellow provide a blank backdrop for hanging artwork or choosing other types of decor. They also reflect more light from windows and artificial light sources, which automatically makes a room look bigger, and they give the illusion that the walls are receding outward from the center of the space.
If the problem is a low ceiling rather than a lack of horizontal space, painting vertical stripes on the wall or painting the ceiling a lighter color than the walls can also make a room feel larger and airier. Designers sometimes paint the bottom half of a wall a darker color than the top half to create the illusion of taller ceilings.
Alternatively, consider painting the ceiling and walls the same color, then choosing a similar shade for the floors. This eliminates the definition created by the joints between walls, ceilings and floors, which can make a small room look much bigger.