Small Den Decor

Dens aren’t usually large rooms, if you have a large den, you’re lucky, they’re usually smaller and present unique design challenges.   But part of the appeal of the den is its coziness, so don’t fight it, but embrace it. 

Use these tried and true methods for creating a warm, inviting space rather than a cramped, cluttered room.


Thank goodness televisions have gone flat panel, because the older, oversized sets overwhelm the room.  Have the television installed on the wall, preferably with a swing arm to angle it as needed.  You’ll appreciate the space it opens up in the room.


You don’t need to go small scale with the furnishings, but don’t go oversized.  Avoid putting all the furniture against the walls.  It’s tempting and you would think it makes the room look larger, but it doesn’t.   Other tips:

  • Pull the couch out, angle a chair and even place a desk diagonally in the corner.  In fact, putting furniture on a diagonal in the corner can actually make the room seem larger, as the eye is drawn to the length of the furniture rather than the corner of the room.
  • Choose a couch and chairs  with open arms and exposed legs.
  • A glass topped table, will keep the appearance of more space. This allows light to filter under the furniture, making the room appear larger.  
  • Avoid the sectional sofa in smaller dens, they tend to overwhelm the room.


Of course, lighter colors can make a room look larger, but rich colors can bring warmth and coziness. 

  • Warm colors - suggest warmth and seem to move toward you and ‘advance’, such as reds, yellows and oranges.  These will make the room look cozy, but smaller.
  • Cool Colors - Cool colors tend to be more soothing, giving a calm impression and rarely overpowering rooms since they tend to recede. Cool colors mainly consist of blues and certain shades of greens and violets. These colors tend to make space recede and look can make the room look larger.

It’s up to you which look or feeling you want for your room.


Using mirrors to open up the space is an option to open up smaller rooms.  Placing the mirror where it picks up a light source, such as natural lighting from a window, is a good trick to make the room look larger and lighter.


And speaking of light, put your lights on a dimmer, it’s an easy way to turn overhead ambient lighting to accent lighting with a turn of the switch.

Using any or all of these illusions can help open up a smaller den, or give it cozy appeal.  Even though it may be a smaller room, avoid the dark and cluttered trap that’s so easy to fall into with smaller spaces.