HOW TO CREATE A FABULOUS FLOORPLAN
At the risk of sounding overly dramatic … we think that the floorplan of a home can be life-changing! The layout you choose can be the difference between a relaxed and comfortable house that you love to come home to … or a maze of small and impractical rooms, lacking flow and appeal.
With this in mind, you’ll want to spend a fair amount of time evaluating different options and perfecting your plans when you’re renovating or building your home. We’ve recently been through the process when designing our and we had a long list of must-haves to create a fabulous floorplan for this ‘best of the Birds’ home. These are some of our top tips for creating a floorplan you’ll love…
NOW AND FOREVER
If you’re undertaking a significant reno on a home you plan to live in for a long time, creating a floorplan that will also work well into the future is a must. If you’re in the parenting trenches with a tribe of under 5s, you’ll be wanting open spaces that enable you to easily supervise the kiddies … but before you know it, they’ll be teens and wanting some slightly more private spaces to hang with their friends without mum and dad staring straight at them. And perhaps the gorgeous, sweeping staircase we chose for House 14 seems a little, um, ‘mature’ for a young brood … but just you wait, they’ll be scaling those stairs like pros in no time and you’ll get to enjoy the beauty of this masterpiece for years to come.
THE GREAT ESCAPE
We love an open-plan floorplan but it can’t be without places to escape to as well. There is such thing as too open-plan though so, you’ll want to include some quieter places in your home too. Whether or not they’re for everyone in the family or specifically for the parents or kids is up to you. #mediaroom #study #mancave #sheshed
LET IT FLOW
The indoor/outdoor flow is key! If your home doesn’t have an alfresco area, we bet there’s probably an opportunity to create one – even if it’s small. The best alfresco areas are built directly off an open-plan living space and kitchen. One of our favourite solutions is building an indoor/outdoor servery with a large gas-strut window that allows people to sit outside while still socialising with the people inside.
PLAN FOR MOST OF THE TIME, NOT SOMETIMES
Even if you love to entertain, it’s usually not worth sacrificing what you would prefer to live with every day for the sake of what looks nice when you’re entertaining. A bar area is a nice-to-have in an entertaining home but if it takes up valuable space in your floorplan, a bar cart that can be pulled out when you need it will probably do the trick just as well.
PRIORITISE A POWDER Room
As the ‘go-to’ bathroom for guests, it’s best to locate the powder room away from main living spaces like the kitchen and lounge room. Guests don’t want their visit to the toilet to happen right under the nose of the homeowners and vice versa.
AVOID A VIEW OF YOUR LOO
And, while we’re talking about toilets, think about where your toilet is positioned and try to avoid placing it as the first thing you seen when you walk through the door. We love to pop the toilet behind the door or a little half-wall can be a great way to hide it from plain sight.
SUPERSIZE YOUR MAIN BEDROOM
A parents’ retreat is well up our list of priorities in family homes. Just as it sounds, it’s a space for the parents to retreat to and much more than just a main bedroom - so if you can fit an additional chair or two in the space you’ve immediately made the space for more than just sleeping. We always aim to include a modern ensuite (usually quite open) and a spacious wardrobe.
WHERE DO THE WINDOWS GO?
Don’t forget to consider windows when drawing your new floorplan: where should they go and which type of windows they should be. Are they fixed or do they need to open? How does the aspect (the direction your room faces) affect their placement? Which way does the sun travel? #hellowintersun Where does the natural light come in and what time of day does your family use the space? What are you going to see out those new windows? You want to be sure you’re not presented with an unsightly view of your neighbour’s clothesline. Sometimes it’s better to have no window than one with an ugly view. Of course, there is always frosted glass or window coverings for those situations.
MAKE YOUR HALLWAY HEAVENLY
Our is advice is simple: the wider the hallway, the better. You won’t regret it.
INCLUDE AN URBAN MUDROOM
A mudroom was once only found in country homes where muddy boots are the norm but we think they’ve got a place in a city pad too! Regardless of where you live, if you can fit one in your home (even if it’s just a nook), they’re a winner for tossing school bags, hats, dirty shoes and all those items you walk through the front door carrying. Ideally, your mudroom (or mudnook) will be located where you enter the house ... which could even be near the internal access from your garage.
CHECK OUT OUR LATEST FLOORPLAN
We’ve taken our own top tips to help create the floorplan for House 14, our Three Birds Dream Home, built by Rawson Homes. Watch Episode 2 as we create the plans and see them come to life(size!).