Make Your Layout Work For You


Function-Driven Interior Design


Lesson Info

Make Your Layout Work For You

So now we've gotten an idea of what our life stages and what our lifestyle is now let's think about the layout so this is the piece that starts adding the most trouble a lot of times to the scenario so even just thinking about a room like this it's just a za bedroom layout and you know understanding what you need to happen so not unlike theresa thinking about you know she has this corner of the room that she's not even really using right now what could how could that function for you and going through the list of scenarios could it these more storage could it be some other activity um you know what? What anything come to mind since you've started thinking about it this morning that might could happen in that space not really I mean I'm blessed to have a large home with lots of storage so it's not it's not going to be a I'm afraid it's not going to be so much a functional need as something I just wanted to look pretty but I would like it to be useful because you know almost everything i...

n my home is useful on some level and you just finished saying that when things get noisy and the rest of your house you you escape somewhere to read so maybe it's another reading place for you maybe it's something that's really comfortable where you couldn't spend time s o you know just it there's so many things that we have to deal with, including things like windows and doors and a lot of us, and I'm sure when we get into the room challenges people will bring me some of these things that stump me, it's amazing to me when I have my other designed from a to z classes, no matter how many challenging rooms and designed disasters and all of these other things that I have encountered, people can always bring the most bizarre layout it's, that I have to help find the solution for it. It's surprising to me how many spaces will have not not really even a single wall in a room that you can anchor furniture room on because of all the doors and windows and openings and columns or the walls were all removed or long really narrow spaces and things like corner fireplaces and things that are off center and there's just a multitude of things. Architecturally, you have to deal with that or even challenging for me, and I do this for a living, so I can only imagine that many, many people are just challenged by the layout of their space s o, you know, going from something like a bedroom, which that has ample storage right to somewhat sizable closets, not walk ins, but I mean it's, not terrible and there's several spaces in this uh, room that you can anchor for the bed and those sorts of things out, as we mentioned in another class, I think I love to come in and see the bed opposite of the door. It's nice, visually, aesthetically, but that's. Not always a possibility either. And then we go to something like the next space, which is just a tiny little room and here's one of those where? Yeah, you have very little space for anything to happen. Is there's a door or a window on almost every wall in this room? I'm not really sure this was probably from one of our inbox interiors designs. It looks to me like we've got either a bench or a day bed over here. Uh, maybe this was a nursery. Even I think that was a crib and a and a er chair with a little ottoman and his table, but again, very little room to do much in a space like this. So how do you make this work? And a lot of people are dealing with this kind of thing all the time, so the layout becomes the most challenging piece. A lot of times of what we have to deal with, you have to come up with creative ways, tohave storage. I think this was a closet down here, but again doors and windows and we're going to talk about how to measure those can become really challenging so I'm just gonna move through so that we don't run out of time on these a few of these but just giving us an idea of the different kinds of things that we have to deal with just with layout this is one where we can see a desk is one of the bedside tables so there wasn't really room for anything but a really small bedside table on this side of the bed but we were able to put a desk on the other side I'm also dealing with the bit the benches at the foot of the bed it's sometimes hard to find something that says long is a king size bed and maybe you also have other reasons that you could use something like little modular cubes in a different way so thinking about howto get creative with the pieces that go into a space and we'll talk a lot more about multipurpose pieces um again this was a little entry we did for um one of our inbox interiors and we were trying to add a lot of function here because this was an entry and several people have already talked about entryways on dso a lucite tray on the table for the male to go into or the keys or your phone or all of those things I love to use beautiful pieces that are also functional, so as opposed to putting something that's not attractive out by a decorative bowl or collectible, and let that be what captures everything that comes out of your pockets. We have hooks on the wall, these little two squares on either side of the center table, our little benches, they can fit a under on either side of the front door if they need to, if you need more traffic flow that can be pulled into other rooms for seating. And then they had a collection of old book jackets are old books, and we took the jackets off, and we framed them on the wall. So we made something personal in the space, because there's very little, uh, room in this entry for anything of interest. There's, not much space, tow hang art on the wall. Um, this is just showing you, you know, a sample of when you start looking at the layout of a space and what you're challenged with versus how to start fitting furniture, and then and this is the very thing that we're talking about with regard to having things you can't change about a layout like the front door, a fireplace to built in bookshelves. None of those things can change in a whole window in the front of the room, and how do you start laying furniture in that space and then also the main traffic flow from this entire house comes right through the front door between those bookshelves into the kitchen down here and all the bedrooms off sides of it becomes hard to have a large dining table, you know, there's a lot of things, almost all the challenges start really coming in we put life I'll plus the layout, right? Because all of the things we want to teo and trying to marry them with the spaces that were given last time I was here to a lot of people in our class for saying in california, you don't always get to get the house that you want because there's it's real estates at a premium and things on you know that you would really desire tohave are not necessarily what's on the market or in your price range. So a lot of times you're also having to fit things um into a space also thinking about in this instance, a round table makes so much more sense than a rectangular went went rectangular when here only because of traffic flow, because in general, I would say, phil almost that entire space to really get the most out of your square footage and see more people, but I happen to know that almost every piece of traffic flow is coming straight from the front door around that table and into the kitchen and so when you have a big rectangular table, you can run right into the corner of it with your legs and traffic can't move around it very easily so things like that start changing how, um a space works right and what you have so that's really when we're going to get much more into the layout um so that's really what we you know, we start to deal with all of those kinds of challenges and the layout is really what a lot of you are going to probably say isn't maybe the piece that's working for you so the life stage plus lifestyle plus layout equals liveable. So is your home really livable for for you do we have questions about that? And I can go back to some of those layouts soon we could talk through them some more and we're going to get into that much more too waiter coming scads of comments in various rooms and things just got some australian wood it's not I don't know I'm not scared I mean lot obtain we contain there's always something new here way do and lots of different challenges and lots of different questions. Hannah k was saying that she works from home, but then her office became the nurse hurry so she moved her office to a new loft conversion, which was meant to be her master bedroom it feels temporary so now she's hoping to make it the bedroom soon so people are sort of getting their own solutions and coming up with all right we wanted this room for this but our lifestyle changed or whatever so so now we make it livable and it's actually this exact thing we're talking about right isn't like life state their life stage changed and change their lifestyle actually and then everything had a sort of shift to accommodate that right deb joshua's say exactly same thing she works from home yeah she said her current dream is to just hide everything I know that dream what I like did josh's first says david rushes come back a couple of times because she's obviously fueling this isn't another one of you if you did yeah and she and this is because I brought on my ad across from australia without knowing where I will be living and some of my art is pretty substantial rolled it all up and brought it because it's very very meaningful to me so did judge says she sort of collects large art and it just doesn't go with each other because kalish is collecting because she loves the peace not considering it as a homogenous connection right so my walls just look at the charity shop on the corner wait let's go back and look at scott's house because I think that was a great example you can actually do things that so look at this. I mean, he has a lot of different kind of these has photographs mixed with paintings, and I just happen to know the rest of his head as he works on paper, all kinds of things. So on we talked about last time, too, about ways to transition not only with style and with color. So bringing all three the pieces, the other function, style and color, you can start making those things work. So if they work for her functionally, they fit the space. Now, sometimes the layout that we were just talking about it's, what prevents you from having enough wall space tow? Have some of these things really work at all? Uh, but I certainly think she could use them all together on the used elements like color. Remember how he used in the very first score something the transition pieces together, and that becomes really important in this class, too, because a lot of times like we saw earlier in that first section, I said, I love this little room with the day bed and the bookcases and there's a sleeping zone and works on and all of these things happening in this tiny little room, but it was the color of the space that made them all transition. So function as I said earlier it's easy to make things look beautiful it's hard to make things really, really functional so if you get the function piece in place, I think the decorative part becomes a lot easier and it becomes a thing that makes it all work together does and I like the way that scott has used different size art different he's he's hung them differently on different space, etcetera mean, I said I just have moved into a new space and the first thing I had to do was measure every wall, every space so everything was hung exactly right and then I got my spirit level out all the rest is that goodness that would drive me nuts but I like it, but I wouldn't be able to cope with that. It has to be absolutely perfect and that's again. What I was meaning earlier by the personality of the client is it has a big part of this whole piece too in the function piece you know, even thinking about I quite designed to fashion a lot into clothing a lot and there are certain people who are so comfortable just putting clothes on off the rack and then there's other people who want their sleeve length exactly right and I bet you're like that you want your your coat tailored and I I love it I love a good tailor as well but I can see, like, having everything customized for you, so that's, just two different personality types. Someone who's totally laid back. It's good enough. This is fine versus somebody that's wanting, something very specific, that's going to lead to different needs for function as well. Now we have a great question here, from rosie rosie saying she's in a mature life stage, her husband and her in the process of downsizing, with the challenge of accommodating a large family several times a year with the four seasons that can be a challenge is, well, we intend to build an open concept cabin with a large screen porch. Any ideas for incorporating that space? Okay, so she's, she's downsizing, but they still have a large family. They need to accommodate several times a year, and she's wanting to have building on open concept cabin. Cabin with a large screen porch, so she wants to incorporate that into her new space. And so what? I'm not really sure what the question I think that's a great idea, as we were saying earlier, I really think that I'm really just looking for some ideas, what you're looking for porch inc like, you know, the idea of that that covered but outside maura, I guess whether hearty, you know what a lot of maybe having more detail you'd like to share, please get back in the charm and I think again, there are so many things that can we've been talking about that from the lifestyle standpoint of and loving to be outside, and I think that's wonderful and one of the things I love most about outdoor spaces, just like lisa was saying is her outdoor space almost doubles her into hurt her living spices because she that can mimic or mirror the both living and dining rooms on the outside of their house. So that becomes really important square footage for you from living in that home, right? I mean, I don't know how how big your square footage is, but I'm sure it adds at least another twenty five percent or so onto the outside, absolutely, and it also changes the the flow because if I'm constantly going back and forth then it needs to be your furniture layout has to create a traffic flow that supports going in and out right? Because you sometimes people will fill the need teo like in a small space put furniture in front of those doors or kind of near not too far away from them to really maximize that inside living space but if it keeps you from going out or your having to move a chair or something to get in and out, that didn't really work for you, right? So I think for the scenario of this person in the chat room, I think really just thinking about as we were just saying traffic flow, multi purpose pieces that that will accommodate a lot of people, small ottomans and benches and things that float in dorne out. Another thing I love to do is I love to cover indoor furniture in outdoor fab bricks and then they can go in and out all the time, so if you have like chairs like occasional chairs or dining chairs like parson style upholstered chairs, you can use all the different kinds of theirs. You know, cinderella make some there's a multitude of brands that make beautiful indoor outdoor fabrics and they're great for durability they're great for kids and then they can move in back and forth between those spaces too also, depending on the area that you live in the country like me, we have all four seasons. We can spend quite a bit of time outside, but it's really hot in the summer in arkansas and then about this time of year, we have tremendous amounts of pollen from the trees, and so it gets. Really the outdoor spaces get really, really dirty and it's very frustrating, so thinking about even a screened in porch, but potentially depending on where they are so some places you could just have outdoor spices and have him fully uncovered and where we live, it's great to have a screen porch and there's even wonderful covers that you can have installed that just roll down or con's it down to keep everything tidy and clean. And then, once the pollen seasons over, you can roll them back up. So lots of things to think about depending on all of these different scenarios for outdoors. So hopefully that helps her think of some of the multipurpose pieces of furniture, indoor outdoor fabrics, maybe a screen porch, depending on what her climate is like. I should've I have a question from donna, this is something we got to get to in a future segment on, but we're just touching it very briefly. Is there a secret to designing around workout equipment? She is an empty nester she needs her space but she also has a pill artie's table that she uses every day now we are going to come to that but just quick thought we are yes so again I think more than anything it's acknowledging that this is a regular part of your lifestyle like we were talking about with lisa earlier and you know, because a lot of us think I don't know I think we get it in her head that we shouldn't have these things out these things were supposed to be hidden away or they're not part of our lives also first of all just embracing the fact that I'm going to use that pallotti's table every single day so it needs to be somewhere I can get to it um and maybe also not trying so much to decorate around it sometimes we try to decorate things like we're talking about with the tv or the fish tank and it really just draws more attention to them so I think keeping things simple making a space for it that it really works and then for some people I mean maybe not that piece because it sounds like she has a large like a pallotti's reformer it's probably a big table but there are lots of really cool advances in technology with other workout equipment that can be that khun fold up if it's treadmills and things that can really be, you know, small spice and be modular and and kentucky away so it depends on what kind of workouts and we're going to look at I think we have totally have time in one of the segments for even me even to just do a little sketch of a room in my house that's a workout zone for me where do yoga and have a treadmill and just kind of showing what that's gonna look like from where it is now to where it's going from a layout standpoint but we're going to talk about that more and don't did say she'd actually tried it in the garage but she found the garris just to heart, so but we're goingto toby's gonna have lots of different solutions in lots of different ideas in upcoming segments. Bethany is also asking toby she's very fascinated by this your laundry room in your master closet is that going to be the only laundry room in your house on def? Yes well you were only have access through the closet or will it be another possible in this house? Yes in this house it's going to be my only laundry room and I'm gonna actually show you all this afternoon my floor plan of my new house so we're going to use me as a kind of a case study so you'll get to follow through this process with me which is kind of fun you know, this is a very specific example of I'm going to live in this house at least ten years, maybe longer than that, it could be a forever has I'm not really a forever house kind of girl, I'm a designer, and I loved to re decorate, but maybe, you know, maybe I have a second home later because this is definitely a house that could be a forever home. So if you were doing this for resale, it might not really work and it's a two story home, and if I had more than one child, I would probably put an additional laundry room upstairs. But in this house with my lifestyle and as small as my family is, it really only makes sense for me to use that lottery space in my put it into the closet now where it is right now, and I'll show you that later this afternoon is in a hallway and it's just a bi fold closet, and I really need that space in the kitchen, and I want to take that out and move it somewhere else. So I'll show you what this looks like, but I probably am gonna leave an option for putting a second one upstairs so that as my daughter gets older and I don't really want to be hauling her. Clothing into my master closet. I mean, right now, I would anyway probably cause she's young, but there will be an option lighter for a second laundry upstairs in australia, but certainly in britain, I think part of you of the laundry is always in the kitchen, which doesn't really make any sense, but that that's what's because we discussed at a lot of this trial is a european is always in the kitchen, and we use the european very condensed appliances. And we did have that phase of the washer dryer. Yeah, fire doesn't. But we I was going to say, usually, when I was designing family house is safer to kids. Plus, we'd always put the laundry upstairs, except and again, that's a little different here, and probably not simon europe, either. But in a stranger, a lot of people like to hang clothes said that they would drive to get that beautiful smell of a drive, sometimes close. So, you know, you want your laundry on ground level, or you would actually designed, like a porch area that would face west, our country north in your country self so that you could go from upstairs in the laundry, and I have to carry it downstairs well and that's, the thing now is to not have to to carry the laundry so in the closets where you put it on and where you take it off usually so if the laundry station khun b there it really adds a lot of function and then the same upstairs and I think ellison's is she really is almost like a second master suite in our home because I think the master that we live in now on the first floor was in addition at some point, which is great, so she has such a sizeable room, I think that it'll allow for a second laundry upstairs there's a closet that would be perfect for it right outside our bedroom and and then I hadn't thought about it, sally, but I do have this great, um, porch almost like a sleeping for it all in the upstairs of the back of the house, so that could be where I have had hang laundry hanging to dry upstairs so that's a good thing, it does not just a touch very quickly back on dining space because table seemed to be a big thing that's challenging a lot of our online audience, magdalena de is saying, I can't imagine to buy a house without space for a big table because I'd just love to have all my family for all of the holidays but it's just not possible now because she's in a two bedroom apartment and glam a coach is coming in on that and saying, well, I believe in spaces that served more than one function if you really only have dinner once or twice a year do you really need it when you can? Probably them work around a solution if you're just having the family of thanks so that's thinking about things like the coffee table we saw that turns into a table which is amazing and then if you think about it we'll get into a lot more than because I love those multi purpose pieces of furniture but if you had, say, a console table against a wall with too little ottomans underneath it and but those could pull up to be chairs at the table because they're the right height for dining and then maybe you could have chairs and things to sit on that were at the right height tucked all around the room and when you brought that up to a dining height, then suddenly you could have a dining table right there in the middle of the living room so something like that it's a great solution comments coming we really appreciate it thank you for your questions as well. So in anything here that that we any of you would like to address before we move on to the afternoon have you learned anything about this thinking about your lifestyle or your life stage even um have you decided that your house is more or less liveable than he thought it was before we started this segment in any way? Well, I know we're in a transitional phase right now because we have one in high school into in college that come home and I'm feeling like we live we're starting to live in very small parts of the house like my husband's in the bedroom a lot I'm in the kitchen a lot and so I'm already thinking of downsizing I'm ready to go I would like smaller space, but he likes having a lot of space even though he stays in the bedroom a lot in that funny yeah, so but I can see that we're definitely going to be transitioning over the next few years for sure. So what spaces would you eliminate when two spaces? Do you not need as many living spaces as you had before? Yeah, I mean, I don't think we really need a formal living room for sure I do use it for my book club an occasional entertaining but if we moved into a different place where the family room was a little prettier and not so big in the kitchen, I think we could make do with just a nice like parlor size family room kitchen that's maybe a little separate still want my dining room for sure so I think it's really fun to start thinking about that from this perspective, because if you could really plan for some of those things, you would pick a lot of different things. Like in the next task, whether you build or you are, you buy or you renovate. You could think about it totally differently than you think you did a few years ago. Um, and maybe making going from maybe a two story house, too, like a one story house. Potentially is is on a lot of people's minds as they age, and not to have to climb stairs. And that sort of things.

Class Description

Brought to you by House Beautiful Magazine, award-winning interior designer Tobi Fairley returns to CreativeLive for her third workshop on creating a functional, beautiful space for the way you really live.

Tobi will show you how to merge style with function. Tobi will teach you how to make use of every square foot of your space — whether that space is large and spacious or small and compact.

You'll learn about spatial planning, including how to read and use floor plans, as well as how to maximize small spaces and make the most out of large rooms (without blowing your budget on more furniture). Whether you're redesigning your home office space or studio apartment, Tobi will give you the tools you need to make your space function perfectly just for you.