Interiors advice - turn the spare room into a swish guest bedroom or a new bathroom
PUBLISHED: 00:00 20 August 2015
We don’t want you to go but when you do we’ll find something interesting to do with your room! Alison Tordoff reports
It’s a sensitive subject...the house is feeling a bit empty and quiet come September. Your fledglings have flown the nest, moved into student halls or a shared flat.
So what to with that empty room? Well that’s just it. It’s not empty; it has remnants of fun, laughter and memories of a grown up child. There’s no rush, but when you are ready to make a few changes to the room it can be sensitively tweaked and reclaimed into a useable space.
Maybe you have a hobby that deserves some expansion room, a desk area or some of the storage can be created for this purpose, or for visiting friends to stay now you have more time on your hands.
In terms of style direction, the world is your oyster. You can view this as an exciting new project to get your teeth into, so get flicking through magazines (starting with this one), or go on Pinterest and collect some interior inspiration and ideas, keeping one eye on the new direction and being mindful of how the previous occupant will view it on a return visit.
Start with the items, fittings and furniture that you would like to keep, then look at how you can make subtle changes with the other items to make a big difference to the final look. Are there any items that really grate with you? Maybe they are the wrong colour, style or simply not functional any more.
The room may be more useful if it has space for a double bed, perhaps with drawers or under-bed storage, to hide away accumulated personal belongings. Favourite photos can be reframed in co-ordinating frames and arranged in a gallery style, and sentimental ornaments can be displayed in groups, maybe on specific display shelves in order to keep other surfaces clutter-free and useable.
Quick fixes like mixing new window dressings, a feature wallpaper, and bed linen in with the existing furniture and lighting can create a more modern look. It may be that the lighting is looking rather dated, so a simple change of fittings, or lamp shades, can make all the difference.
Little changes can make big statements. You could be bold with a splash of colour, calm with a range of muted tones, or influenced by heritage colours and patterns. The period of your building may also play a part here.
But if you simply can’t bear the thought of changing the room, then it’s fine to just leave it as a shrine. I know my old bedroom at my Mum and Dad’s house still has plenty of sentimental items from my childhood. It’s part of life.