A4AC Architects is the team bringing us today’s design inspiration. With quite a collection of design projects completed in South Africa (and the rest of the continent), the Johannesburg-based A4AC Architects specialises, among other things, in giving old shipping containers a second chance in life by transforming them into more usable structures like houses, coffee shops, schools, etc. In addition, the team is also committed to its range of available services to clients, including interior designs, construction management, finalising detailed architectural drawings, and much more.
Today, we get inspired by some of A4AC Architects’ portfolio pieces while detailing various ways in which to create multi-purpose rooms in a home. Creating spaces and zones with versatile and flexible uses may sound daunting, but odds are your home already consists of such areas…
COVID-19 has led to all of us rethinking our working- and living spaces and –habits. And that, in turn, has resulted in a popularity boost for multi-functional furnishings, including those that neatly fold away when not in use – or, even better, double-duty pieces that easily transform into something else.
Look out for: fold-away desks, tables and chairs, a wall bed with an integrated desk (especially creative for kids’ rooms), bunk beds with built-in desks and sofas, etc.
How do you make an under-utilised corner more practical? By adding an L-shaped corner desk or corner shelving unit to it to up your storage space and free up floors and closets for other uses.
And considering that uses for corners are limitless, your other options can include using a banquette to craft a corner dining nook; setting up a cosy little reading corner in your guest room (or other space); placing proper lighting fixtures in corners to up a room’s dazzle; etc.
Walls are not just for painting and portraits. They can also help you organise your multi-functional home in very practical ways.
For example, adding hooks, bars or even floating shelves to walls can allow you to hang your bicycle, bags, coats, folding chairs, or even a fold-down desk while clearing up precious floor space. Because, as we all know, the more floor space we have, the more potential there is for other purposes like entertaining, exercising, working, relaxing…
In terms of storage, you need to become very creative in order to store a whole lot more in your multi-functional rooms than you would in single-purpose spaces. But what if you’re not able to install new kitchen cabinets and hallway/bedroom closets or shelving?
Then you opt for low-tech storage options like containers/baskets for kids’ toys hung up on bedroom walls. Or a colourful tote bag hung on the back of the bedroom door for quickly stashing away toys.
Regardless of how many functions your home serves, you still need a proper design to make it feel stylish and inviting. If you went for lots of double-duty furnishings (like a sofa transforming into a bed), ensure all pieces match the room’s chosen style and décor.
And don’t overlook the importance of colours and textures. A consistent look for colour palettes and furniture styles can also help to clear visual clutter and, thanks to complementary colours, can ensure a ‘softer’ look for your interiors.
Crafting a perfect multi-functional home is all about allocating your space according to your needs. For instance, if you host fancy dinner parties once or twice a year, why let an entire formal dining room’s space go to waste for the remainder of the time?
Thanks to fold-away or transforming furniture, you can have a dining room and home office in one space instead of choosing. Thus, think carefully about all the possible ways you can use that room before settling on a final design.
Speaking of multi-functional spaces, have you seen The homify guide to designing your walk-in closet?