Space Planning, Big and Small


Planning and designing rooms has become so second nature I rarely struggle with the details. However, I have learned that planning and organizing spaces for myself is SO much more challenging! We’re moving into our new warehouse this week and the move in itself is massive, but planning all the storage necessary to exact measurements was a huge job!

I still follow the same principles, what are the “must haves” that you need to plan space for? How much space will they require today and will you be adding to them – so how much space do I need to allow for those items in the future? Designing a space is all about the planning. Right down to the last detail.

I had to plan out exactly what I needed for storage to accommodate all our artwork, accessories, bedding and bath linens, drapery and hardware, furniture, area rugs, etc… I had to build the shelving to accommodate multiple sofa/loveseats – to exacting measurements. Then I allowed for additional storage above for smaller furniture. Artwork shelving, had to be multiple heights to accommodate everything from large mirrors and artwork to small accent pieces. So many details to consider. I also know we’ll need room to grow, so building to accommodate what I have now would not work. It would be so much more difficult to add-on after the fact so we wanted to ensure we built for now and a few years into the future at least!!

This is really not much different than planning a kitchen or bath renovation. What items do you need to have storage for? Do you need easy access on a pull our drawer vs. below counter stationary shelves? Custom height counters for taller or shorter individuals? What do you need to keep handy and readily accessible for daily/weekly use vs. those items that may only be used a few times a year? How much will you be adding to what you have, how much space must we allow for additional items, dry/canned food goods, or hair/skin care products? Some people use just a few and replace when they run out. Other people need to have a large selection to choose from. We need to determine how they need to use the space and then plan the space so it works for them. There is nothing worse than going through the time, effort and expense of a reno to find you forgot to plan for something and now have no place to put it!

Although I’m anxious with anticipation to move into the warehouse I’m also quite anxious about whether I’ve remembered to plan for all the storage we will need. My husband is already asking me how long it will take me to “fill up this space?” I guess we’ll just have to wait and see…. In the meantime, planning this level of detail was excellent practice to keep my planning and design skills sharp! 

Biggest Tip:  When planning what storage you will need, continually look through the stuff you need to store and make sure you’ve got a place for everything. Then go back and double check, and then triple check! Then allow some additional space for growth. After all we all end up accumulating more than what we have, and I know my hubby is right. I will always get more décor and accessories and furniture. We’ll just have to see how long it takes me to outgrow the new space!