16 Jul

Practical advice: Create a multifunctional living space

The transition from inside to outside is also perfect for entertaining friends when sunshine naturally draws people outside

Adding an Orangery or Garden room is a great way to extend your home and add space. Perfect for accommodating large or growing families and entertaining groups of friends, the extra room provides an open-plan living area which enables people to do different things without being on top of each other.

With the summer holidays only a couple of weeks away, it’s the ideal time to plan activities and games to keep children occupied. The extra room allowed by a glazed extension is the perfect structured space for kids to play – they can have their own area and feeling of independence, whilst allowing adults to supervise from nearby. It also gives access to the garden outside, seamlessly extending the play-area.

This transition from inside to outside is also perfect for entertaining friends when sunshine naturally draws people outside. Afternoon BBQs are a great way to get together with friends and enjoy the weather in the surrounding garden, but when dusk draws in the shelter offered by a glazed extension is highly welcomed – guests can retreat to somewhere warm, whilst still enjoying views of beautiful summer foliage outside.

In order to enable dynamic use of an open-plan space, it’s important to consider what functions you’d like the space to perform. Enabling a glazed extension to double as a play area and an entertainment area requires careful consideration to how the space will transform so that it’s suitable for children in one instance, and for adults in another.

The easiest way to do make this possible is through selecting furniture that is multi-functional. For example, a big, heavy dining table will be hard to move – it will therefore be impractical for a child’s play area. Likewise, not having enough storage will make it difficult to keep the room free from toys and clutter, which isn’t ideal when entertaining friends.

However, there are plenty of solutions available. Everyone is familiar with the futon – a sofa which can easily be pulled down to form a bed; it’s furniture like this which is the key to making a space easily adaptable whatever your needs. Fold away tables and chairs, hidden storage in sofa bases and stackable cupboards that are easily rearranged are just some examples of multifunctional furniture that can help transform a space.

Having furniture that can be used in multiple ways also means that it has more longevity than one-use pieces, and this can often be a boon in a growing family. Just one or two pieces can make a lot of difference, providing extra seating for parties, or a place to store toys out of the way. Being able to easily rearrange the room will mean that within minutes the room can be transformed to suit your needs, helping you make the most of your new space.