Does your spare room resemble a junkyard, littered with bits and bobs, and boxes filled with who knows what? If so, it’s time to conquer the clutter and put the space to good use by transforming it into a multipurpose area – an office for you, a study for the kids and a guestroom. It’s as simple as investing in a few clever, space-saving pieces of furniture and you’ll be sorted in no time.
1. Personalise a basic flat-pack bookshelf with U-shaped inserts. To make, cut two pieces of 16mm MDF or plywood to fit the depth and height of the shelf, then cut a piece the same height as the shelf and the length you want your insert to be. Predrill, glue and screw, then paint in a bright colour. Instant bookends!
2. This pegboard will make sure you never miss a memo again. Simply paint an old picture frame in glossy black, then staple lengths of coloured stretch cord and black elastic to the back of the frame with a staple gun, crisscrossing them as you go. You can use mini pegs to hold everything in place.
3. Keep your stationery well organised by storing smaller items in little jars.
4. Tired furniture (here, an existing old door on trestle legs) can easily be revived with a light sand and a fresh coat of white paint. An under-desk drawer unit adds extra storage.
5. Little touches such as a single flower in a vase can double as a pretty bookend.
6,7. The sofa bed has come a long way since those times of lumps, bumps and next-day bad backs! But being assigned to the pull-out doesn’t need to be made any less luxurious with worn-out sheets and mismatched pillowcases. Simply store an extra set of matching bedding in the wardrobe so your guests feel right at home.
8,9. Leave room in the wardrobe for spare blankets and towels, and space for your visitors to hang their clothes. And why not pop little soaps on the towels so they’ll feel like they’re staying at the best bed and breakfast? You can use plastic tubs to keep other items neat and tidy.