A floor plan will help you set up your space, so you are best served by it so that it supports you and your family. If you are fighting your home, if you are constantly in a state of upheaval, or clutter, or finding that you are ‘just tidying up a bit’ more than once a week, your home is not working FOR you. You are trying to fit your home, rather than have it fit YOU.
This means that you may be using your home, or spaces within your home in ways that just don’t make sense in your lifestyle, in ways that don’t support you.
Huh? Yup, supports YOU.
If your home is not your support system, if it doesn’t give you comfort, peace, and a place for healing, a place to regroup, and if it’s not a place of inspiration, you are not using your space as your tool. You are letting your space make YOU subservient to it.
Here’s an example from my own life.
I had my drapery workroom set up in a downtown space. I’d get up every morning and drive to work.
A light-bulb moment
Anyway, I woke up one morning, the cat and me in the queen-sized bed, in the 150 square foot bedroom, and had a light bulb moment. The bedroom, where all I really did was sleep, was almost the same size as the room where I worked, and which cost me almost as much as the mortgage on the whole condo. I didn’t really need a queen-sized bed; the cat could just learn to live with it.
I spent that day doing a few floor plans, and within a week I had resized my queen bed to a double, moved it into a spare room, re-purposed the other two bedrooms into workroom/storeroom for the business, and saved myself a LOT of money every month.
The floorplan helped me see what I really needed, and how to make my space work for me. It helped me look at the space I had and decide what was best for me.
Ignore what the blueprint says
Just because the blueprint of your home says that a specific area is a bedroom does not mean it can only be a bedroom. Heck, how many people have re-purposed a bedroom into an office?
The first step in interior design is knowing what the space is used for. That’s called room usage. From that comes the furniture needed to support those activities, the lighting, the storage and the seating. THESE criteria determine the use of a space, not the label the space has been given.
Here’s another example.
When I re-purposed my condo, I had to give up my office space in the one bedroom for storage for the business. I had a fairly large dining room ‘nook’ in the condo, in which I had a really nice Mid-century-modern teak dining table and six chairs. I gave it some serious thought and realized that I rarely, very rarely, had five people over for a meal. Typically it was one or two people. So the six-seater table was mostly un-unused but it was a catch-all for office stuff… and it was taking up real estate in my home, and what I really needed was an office space.
So… I got rid of the dining room table, got a small round one, installed a U-shaped desk in the nook. PERFECT!!
How a floorplan helped
But, I didn’t just get rid of the table and buy a desk. I did a floorplan of the area, got the measurements of the space I had for a desk, considered where
I’d put the filing cabinet I needed, and what dimensions would the new table be to seat three. I realized that I needed shelving above the desk for the reference books I frequently used, and I had measured the linear footage of the books as they were on their shelf in the ‘old’ office. So knew I needed two shelves, and I knew that I needed the shelves to also accommodate binders (suppliers catalogues) so they had to be a certain distance apart, and a certain depth.
I also knew I had to take the one floor electrical heat register into account, and not have it stuck under the filing cabinet. And I also wanted to make sure I could leave the ‘kitty shelf’ at the window, with a way for her to get up to it.
I wanted to use my sunburst clock on the wall, and for a while I also had a painting I wanted to display. I needed a garbage can with a shredder attached, I needed a place for the printer and good table space for me to spread out fabric and paint samples. The little dining table was perfect for that. I needed seating for three ( desk chair counted as one).
All of these uses were noted in the room usage list I did for the space. Then I transferred all the info to the to-scale floorplan and made a shopping list.
I didn’t have to buy things I didn’t need, or which didn’t fit. I knew exactly what I needed and I didn’t deviate from the shopping list.
What happened in the end
The end result was a space, formerly called the ‘dining room’, which perfectly suited my needs. I had a place to eat and a place for an office. I didn’t have to go to another room to access the filing cabinet or the printer. Everything was contained in one area. And it was designed for a purpose, so it worked.
Just imagine how much better you will feel if you can walk into your home and not see clutter, or paper all over the dining table, or your hobby spilling into the living room, or the kitchen counter covered with another project — making it so you can’t cook without spending a half-hour cleaning.
Room usage is step one to wellness living
Ever heard of wellness living? It’s what we get when we strive to create balance, ease, health, and comfort in our lives. From what we eat, to how we sleep, and to how our physical surroundings impact our lives, it all starts in the home.
In pursuit of wellness, step one MUST be re-imagining your living space so it serves you, not forcing you into working ‘around’ the space. And believe it or not, that starts with a well-planned floor plan.
It’s actually easier than you think. Contact me if you’d like help doing this in your life.
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