Repurpose Rooms Instead of Adding Rooms to Your Home

Redesigning an open floor plan or a room can be challenging when these spaces are to be used for multiple functions. In green and sustainable interior design, we like to repurpose rooms, which are rarely used instead of adding square footage.

Formal living rooms and formal dining rooms are perfect spaces for repurposing. A rarely used formal living room can be a great way to recapture space. Instead of using this room only when special guests visit, consider using it as a home office, a multimedia or a music room. Since the trend in home offices only continues to grow, manufactures have designed smarter and more functional furniture with plenty of storage space that bridges with other furniture pieces. Use smaller scale furniture, such as a secretary, that can secretly house a laptop computer, files, an all-in-one printer, scanner, and fax machine and some office supplies. The existing seating in a formal living room can accommodate visiting office guests. Formal living rooms can also serve as music rooms. Listening to music in the living room was a popular activity before televisions arrived.

Your formal dining room could double as a library. Many formal dining rooms are only used a few times a year and make a great space to do home work or work on special projects. By placing a sofa on one side of the dining table, you can make the room feel like a small hotel lounge, which would provide a comfortable place to read a book when other areas of the home are occupied. A dining room with extra-deep banquettes could be used as additional sleeping space when not in use.

NOTE: The lighting needs to be flexible in multipurpose spaces. A well-designed room needs to have the correct lighting to meet its different functions, if it is going to be successfully used as planned. For the daytime, it is best to have as much natural day light available as possible. For the evenings, it is best to have a variety of lighting choices such as recessed lighting, cove lighting, sconces, table and floor lamps. All lighting should be on energy efficient dimmers to accommodate the different needs of the space and to create the appropriate mood.

Lynn Hoffman Design can help you improve your home. We are experts in planning, downsizing and designing healthy interiors. To learn more about our range of Sustainable Interior Design, Universal Design and Consulting services available in Connecticut, Manhattan and Westchester Counties, New York and areas beyond. Contact us us at 203.984.4695 or email us at

Image by holub3max

Lynn Hoffman

203.984.4695 |