How to Create a Multi-functional Space

City living may mean limited space, but you don’t have to sacrifice functionality. I was recently challenged to find a clever way to maximize a client’s space. All of the bedrooms in the home were occupied, but the client lacked a guest room and efficient workspace and storage in their walkout basement. This is how I created a dual-purpose room.

1. An efficient and functional layout.

A multi-functional room needs a practical layout. What is the room being used for? In this case, we knew the home business needed stations for three workers, a sitting meeting area, closed storage, plus it would be a bonus if the room could double as a spare room for out of town guests.

I maximized the space by creating a layout which utilized the perimeter of the room. This freed up the middle of the room for easy movement and created the feeling of a larger space.

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2. Let’s work it out.

I wanted a clean, streamlined design for the office space, with plenty of counter space. I wanted to use every inch of the room, so store bought pieces were out of the question. I went to Harkel Office Furniture for customizable desks with a simple, solid line leg, to maximize the wall space. All the employees use laptops, so a smaller desk depth helped the space seem larger. It also allowed us to run a desk down the middle of the room, dividing the room into two distinct work areas and creating more countertop space.

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3. Storage is always key.

Offices usually come with a ton of paperwork and clutter, so closed storage is key to an organized office. I turned to Cutler Modern Living for unique office solution storage systems. I designated an entire wall of cabinets that would house office storage. My favourite part of this storage system is the flip-up upper storage cabinets, making it easier to get into each one.

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4. Colourless.

The basement office had low ceilings and a lot of furniture being added, so I had a few tricks up my sleeve to make this room look larger and airier. I added a light and fresh coat of JoJo Whitewash PF17 from Para Paint on the walls to open up the room. I continued using this colour for all the wall perimeter furniture. The furniture blends into the walls, creating a calming effect in a tight space.

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5. The overnight guest.

Who doesn’t need more space for those overnight guests? A sofa was needed for the meeting area, but we decided a standard sofa wouldn’t be ideal for an overnight guest. We selected a multi-functional pull-out sofa for the space so it can double as a private retreat for out-of-town guests.

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6. The finishing touches.

The room was pulled together with a few finishing touches. At EQ3, we found a much-needed floor lamp, plus the perfect little round table to drink a coffee, take notes or use as a bedside table for overnight guests. I also added a round metal mirror, great for reflecting the light and making the room look larger. I finished the room with stainless crystal wall sconces from the Jo Alcorn collection by Artcraft Lighting.

And there you have it! A bright, organized multi-functional space you don’t want to leave!

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Written by Jo Alcorn

Jo Alcorn

Canadian Home Trends’ Style Editor, Jo Alcorn, Design Specialist and Founder of Whitewash & Co, has developed a diverse client base and is most proud of being able to provide style and continuity for a range of personalities and decor preferences. Jo’s passion for design has been showcased on a handful of films and many tv programs including HGTV, Discovery Channel, CBC Steven and Chris, Breakfast Television, CityTV, Rogers Stations, Global Morning Show and more. Jo has used her design skills to develop her own line of locally made, high quality, stylish, environmentally friendly furniture, a lighting collection for Artcraft and even her own paint colour! Jo also serves as a teacher at Humber College North Campus.

About Jo Alcorn 31 Articles
Canadian Home Trends' Style Editor, Jo Alcorn, Design Specialist and Founder of Whitewash & Co, has developed a diverse client base and is most proud of being able to provide style and continuity for a range of personalities and decor preferences. Jo's passion for design has been showcased on a handful of films and many tv programs including HGTV, Discovery Channel, CBC Steven and Chris, Breakfast Television, CityTV, Rogers Stations, Global Morning Show and more. Jo has used her design skills to develop her own line of locally made, high quality, stylish, environmentally friendly furniture, a lighting collection for Artcraft and even her own paint colour! Jo also serves as a teacher at Humber College North Campus.

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