How to Create a Multi-use Masterpiece
As we adapt to new circumstances, so do our homes.
Throughout the lockdown era, we've relied on our homes to fulfill more functions than ever before. Office... classroom... social space... gym... you name it, our homes are doing it.
This has changed the way people think about the spaces in their homes.
It no longer seems wise to permanently reserve a whole room for guests when it's only occasionally needed.
Now, homeowners are increasingly creating "flex spaces", using their spaces more efficiently and in more sustainable ways.
Flex spaces can help accommodate your day-to-day life in myriad ways. For tips on maximizing function within your home, check out these tips.
1. Go beyond your room's obvious function
Think about your home's least-used spaces. Formal dining rooms, laundry rooms, extra closets, breakfast nooks - could they be put to better use?
Just because the architect or builder specified an area for a purpose doesn't mean it's set in stone (excuse the pun.) You should feel free to adjust your home's uses if they don't align with your everyday priorities.
A flex space's design should have the activities that will take place there at its heart. Will you be working, exercising, doing homework? Start with the intended use and go from there.
2. Embrace storage
You want to maximize space and minimize clutter...
What's the best way to do that? With lots of storage of course!
Use closed-off cabinets and doors to hide messes and contain any items you'll be needing in the room out of sight. Opt for furniture and containers that stylishly and efficiently accommodate your storage needs.
Sometimes you'll have different sections of a room serving different needs. In this case, it may be a good idea to section off each area.
If you've designated one corner for a home office and another for a gym, for example, you may want to use room dividers or shelving units to serve as physical barriers to separate the space and add privacy. To add clearer visual separation, lay down rugs or paint an accent wall to create different sections.
4. Use flexible furniture
Multi-purpose spaces require multi-purpose furniture.
You want to outfit your room with pieces that can easily be transformed to suit different needs or activities. Nesting furniture that can be separated or stacked, tables with extendable tops or fold-down mechanisms, and armoires that can reveal a workspace all add adaptability to a room.
5. Think long-term
As you begin to fine-tune your space, think about how your needs may change as time goes on.
If you have young children, consider that the function of any given space may change as they get older.
It's a good idea to choose lightweight furniture that's easy to move to help ensure your setup can be rearranged as needed. If you're making a home gym, carry that attitude through and opt for alternatives to large bulky equipment.
This is your space! Customize it to suit you. If you want to go bold and paint it a dramatic color or a funky wallpaper, do it!
With so many creative ways to utilize space, you can showcase your personality and passions.
Over to you!
Now it's your turn.
Time to turn that unloved, underused corner of your home into something that can make your life easier and more practical.
- Jaroslaw Michalowski