Using Rugs in Garage Conversions
Here at Land of Rugs, we love an interior design based challenge. We find great joy in helping customers find the best rug for their needs, whether that is a hard-wearing, weatherproof rug for a functional outdoor space or a luxurious rug to add a little sparkle to a living space.
Recently, one of our warehousemen brought an interior design based challenge into work. We were excited to help and thought the advice was applicable to anyone in a similar situation. So, we created this blog post. Read on to discover how you could turn a potentially dark and uninspiring space into an area that people love to spend time.
The Design Challenge
During a discussion with one of our warehousemen, he informed us of a challenge he was facing.
His dilemma was over the proposed layout of a tandem garage conversion he and his partner were planning. His partner was planning to establish her own dressmaking and alterations business but did not wish to use up valuable living space in their family home.
The plan was to partition three-quarters of the garage space for her use, whilst leaving a small area at the back with a separate door for general storage.
The couple had a small, ambitious budget and were concerned that once the bulk of the conversion work had been undertaken they wouldn’t have the funds to dress space to a high standard. This would lead to the workshop being dark, narrow and gallery-like.
Of course, this would not make a productive or inspirational work environment for his partner and also wouldn’t provide her with a welcoming space for clients to visit.
With a wealth of expertise in creating inspirational spaces, our team embraced the challenge fully. After much discussion and many cups of coffee, we offered our colleague some advice on how to make the most of the space without blowing their budget out of the water.
After reviewing the proportions of the interiors and experimenting with mock-ups of the space, we advised zoning the conversion into two distinct spaces. The first would be a functional and practical workshop area. The second space would be an inspiration customer-friendly reception area that could be used to exhibit products and services.
Although introducing stud walls is the generally accepted way to split a space, in this case we advised against doing this for several reasons:
The walls would take up precious floor space in the converted studio
The walls would create physical barriers which would make an already small space look smaller
The walls would block the flow of light throughout the space
Even though customers would typically stay in the reception area, being able to see the area where work actually takes place can be a great selling point
Instead, we recommended using large rugs to clearly highlight the separate areas without the need to introduce physical barriers.
Moving onto the decor we suggested painting the majority of the interior white to maximise light and space and to act as a backdrop for shelves, displays and any other miscellany that the partner might wish to exhibit. To widen and soften the appearance of space we also suggested utilising the back wall with storage drawers and a small changing screen. In this area, we recommended wallpaper - or paint which would work out more cheaply - in horizontal stripes of pastel tones to inject a stylish touch.
We suggested that the most practical area, the worktable, be placed along the wall under the existing side window at the rear of the conversion, so it could benefit from direct sunlight.
Then, a wide, full-length mirror be pinned in place on the wall opposite the window to reflect the light for clients viewing or arranging alterations to their garments. The addition of the mirror also benefitted the space by making it appear larger and more spacious by reflecting more light around the room.
For furnishings in the front reception area, a small two-seater sofa, potted plant and club chair were to be placed facing the French windows, which would replace the old wooden garage doors as the entrance. We thought it practical that a white washable throw for the sofa would be easy to maintain and always look fresh, finished off with a couple of quirky, contrasting cushions that the partner proposed to make herself along with any other soft furnishings she might decide upon.
The couple were planning to lay laminate flooring themselves in a light maple shade.
They agreed that an area rug measuring approximately 200 x 300 cm in the reception space would give a warm and welcoming feel and that matching it with a smaller rug positioned in front of the worktable would zone yet coordinate the two spaces.
Whilst they agreed with us that picking out one of the colours from the horizontal stripes on the rear wall for the rugs would complete the contemporary feel, they could not agree with each other on which two colours would work best. The warehouseman preferring grey rugs and his partner preferring lilac.
Fortunately, they were united in their agreement that shaggy rugs with an easy-care polypropylene pile would add a touch of luxury and fit the bill nicely.
After researching the Land of Rugs stock for shaggy rugs in purple tones, the wife found the perfect rug to meet her needs. Of course, she won the battle of grey vs lilac - after all it was a space for her business where she would be spending a considerable amount of her time.
Using Rugs in Garage Conversions
Converting garages is a popular and often cost-effective way to add more usable space to your home. However, due to the structure and nature of garage conversions, space and light can often be a luxury.
In this guide, we have highlighted some smart ways to add light to your spaces such as placing mirrors opposite windows to bounce light into space and painting walls white. We have also offered advice on how you can use rugs to create zones without the need to introduce physical barriers which can often reduce an already cramped space.
- Posted On: 15 September 2013