How to Make Small Outdoor Spaces Look Bigger


Space is at more and more of a premium for city-dwellers – and unfortunately, homebuyers often need to prioritize indoor room over an expansive backyard.

Have you ever looked out at your garden and wished you had more space? Or wondered why you never really use your balcony? Yes, having a small outdoor space can be a challenge, but the good news is that you can make these spaces look bigger with some easy to implement tricks.

Just as you would design and arrange a small bedroom to maximize space and appear larger than it is, you can use visual hacks and tricks to give your garden a more epic feel.

Just take a look at these annotated before-and-after gardens to learn how to transform your own small outdoor spaces.

How to design a small space to make it feel bigger

Click on the image to discover how to make outdoor spaces look bigger

Rather than accepting the ‘default settings’ of your garden, have a look at how you can use color and shapes to trick the eye into seeing more space. As this example shows, pale walls and fences create light around the garden perimeter.

Painting your garden furniture to match the lawn or patio gives the sense of a more expansive area. Just be careful not to walk into that table!

How to make the most of your tiny garden

Click on the image to discover how to make your garden look bigger

We tend to associate straight-edged shapes with the built environment, and curvier, meandering forms with the great outdoors. So when you swap your straight path or square flower patch for something more mysterious, your mind senses that you’ve walked into the natural world rather than an urban allotment.

At night, lighting throughout the garden can replicate the same effect of depth and distance.

How to make the most of your small balcony

Click on the image to discover how to make your balcony look bigger

Aside from being a naturally strong, durable, and attractive material, wicker has the advantage of being permeable to light. It makes for much more ‘roomy’ furniture because it blends so well with the background.

If your balcony feels cramped due to high walls, make the most of them by adding high shelves and lighting to expand vertically. Mirrors, too, can be used to neutralize dead ends.

A small garden feels less frustrating when you learn to appreciate and work with what you’ve got. With the right touches, you can make your backyard feel spacious yet cozy at the same time!

So whether it be a tiny balcony, patio area or garden, we’re here to tell you that any small space can feel bigger with the right design. Read our full infographic for more space-expanding trickery, so you can create an outdoor space you‘ll really enjoy.


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Barbara Davidson


Babs is a Senior Content Writer and financial guru. She loves exploring fresh ways to save more and enjoy life on a budget! When she’s not writing, you’ll find her binge watching musicals, reading in the (sporadic) Chicago sunshine and discovering great new places to eat. Accio, tacos! 


The information in this article is provided for education and informational purposes only, without any express or implied warranty of any kind, including warranties of accuracy, completeness or fitness for any particular purpose. The information in this article is not intended to be and does not constitute financial or any other advice. The information in this article is general in nature and is not specific to you the user or anyone else.