When homeowners are lucky enough to have a room that is spare, it can sometimes be difficult to know how to style it. Should it be decorated to be in keeping with the rest of the home? Or is it a chance to do something completely different?

Decorating the Spare Room

As with any room it is a good idea to define the room’s purpose, as this will affect any design choice. If the room is just going to be used as a guest bedroom then choices can be pretty simple. But guest bedrooms are not usually used that often, and for this reason, can end up feeling cold. Several different people will use a guest bedroom, so decoration should be kept fairly neutral; try to avoid the dreaded magnolia color, as this just shouts blandness. Use ‘warm’ colors on the wall, such as rich yellows, oranges, reds and greens. To avoid overwhelming any guest with color though, balance a ‘warm’ shade with ‘cool’ tones, such as a blue or lilac.

To add a human touch, place a few books on a shelf, making sure they cover an eclectic genre range. The person using the guest bedroom may be grateful for a little light reading at bedtime.

Other uses for the Spare Room

The most obvious choice for a spare room is to turn it into a home office or study; ideal for children to do their homework or for someone that works from home. As more people are now working from home, proving that a residence can accommodate a home office is also a good selling point. Practicality and functionality is key in a home office, but that does not mean it has to look industrial. It is part of the home and should reflect the personality of those using it. To induce an industrious mood, walls should be painted or papered subtle colors and unfussy patterns. Pale yellow is good for stimulating thinking, while white makes a room look smart.

Creating That Cozy Space For That Extra Room

For those who love books, a spare room presents an opportunity to create a small library. Line the walls with floor to ceiling shelves, and do not forget to include some seating. A sofa bed would work particularly well in such a room, as it could also double up as a guest bedroom. Many avid readers are also hobbyist writers, so include a desk and chair for those moments of inspiration.

A spare room could also be turned into a home gym, a far more economical choice than taking out a gym membership. The walls should be kept as light as possible to appear clean and airy, although one wall could be lined with a full-length mirror. Install a television on the wall for entertainment and move the equipment in.

For those who would like to keep the living room a purely social, conversational place, a separate TV or media room is a good idea. Greys and blacks would work well in such a room, to tie in with the flat screen TV mounted on the wall, and all the boxes of technology that surround it.

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