Once the festive season is over and the decorations are taken down, many of us enter the New Year thinking about new possibilities and opportunities. The past couple of years have been like no other, and most of us will be hoping for change. For now we are still being advised to be cautious when mixing outside our households, which inevitably means more time being spent in our homes and once again puts pressure on our living space.
With the experience of previous lockdowns at the forefront of our thoughts, maximising the space within the home to improve its functionality is key to our wellbeing and a harmonious household. Whether working from home, studying, hobbying, exercising or relaxing, it’s important to have the space to be ourselves and carry on with our normal daily activities, despite the restrictions on our lifestyles. Our latest blog looks at ideas on how to make key changes to our interiors for more flexible living, and ultimately for a happy, healthy home-life for 2022 and beyond.
The Right Place
A well-designed home layout should allow us to move around freely, without bumping into furniture or stumbling over clutter. When it comes to storage, we should ideally utilise the rooms that are least frequently used. Garages, attics and basements tend to be used less than kitchens, lounges and bedrooms, so where possible choose those for the bulk of your storage. Of course, other rooms will require a certain amount of storage too, but for those items which don’t need to be immediately accessible, opt to store them in the rooms which don’t perform an important everyday function.
Dispose and Donate
Do you really need every item that is taking up valuable space within your home? The first step towards an organised and more spacious home is a major de-clutter! Unless you sort through your items on a regular basis, you’re unlikely to know exactly what you have and where it’s located. Working room by room so it doesn’t seem like an insurmountable task, sort through drawers, cupboards and wardrobes. Dispose of or donate any items you don’t need or feel particularly attached to and then make a list of what is left. If you know exactly what you need to store, you’ll have a better idea of the type of storage solutions to acquire.
Get Space Savvy
Think you have used all the potential storage spaces in your home? Look again and consider ways in which you could give redundant spaces a new purpose. An unused alcove is an ideal place to install shelving or fit a slim-line wfh space, and the area under your stairs could be entirely transformed with a little bit of creativity. If floor space is very limited, consider using vertical storage. The space above your head can be used for wall mounted cabinets, bedroom bridging units above and between wardrobes as well as over-the-door shelving. This type of storage is great for light, bulky items, which would otherwise take up valuable wardrobe, cabinet or cupboard space.
Fitted and Functional
The bespoke nature of fitted furniture makes it the ideal solution to most storage nightmares. When designed specifically around the architectural features of a room, it can provide you with a substantial amount of storage without taking up too much floor space and without making a room feel cramped. Whether you’re remodelling your bedroom, spare room, home study or lounge, there are multiple ways in which you can enhance its design to make the space as functional as possible. From a bedroom perspective, your design can include wall to wall, floor to ceiling wardrobes, stable doors, built in TVs, workstations and vanity units, perfectly finished off with fittings such as tie and shoe racks, mirrored doors and jewellery / accessory compartments.
To fully optimise your living space, you should ideally think about the individual functions you intend each room to perform. If you don’t have the number of rooms to accommodate each function, consider how one space could incorporate multiple purposes. With the right furniture, a room can easily become multipurpose, such as a fold-down bed and a compact desk space, which would enable you to use a previously neglected box room or spare room as both a home office and a guest room. An attic could be used as a workshop or craft room but could also feature a small snug area for much-needed quiet times. Extra space is something most of us crave and with a creative eye you’ll be surprised at how much organisation you can bring into your home.
At Hartleys we’re good at designing rooms which create a balance between storage, space and functionality. If you’d like us to cast an experienced design eye over a living space in your home, we’d be delighted to hear from you. You can call us on tel 01756 700471, pop by our Skipton showroom / factory or request a design visit to your home.