• hilaryridge

The secret to great design solutions.





We have all encountered a challenging room. Maybe the shape is awkward or it needs to have more functions that can comfortably fit. It becomes a space that you don't enjoy using. When you think about designing a room, I'm going to give you a concept that will set you free:


Go for the simple solution.


That is it. But it sometimes is challenging to see what is simple, even when it's right in front of you. One of my clients had a bathroom that was about 12" narrower than standard, so you walked in and right in front was a built in shower stall. What she wanted was to put in a bathtub, but when she showed her plumber he correctly advised that a tub wouldn't fit in the given space. You would be walking right into the end of it with only a two foot clearance! He advised a plan to move the plumbing stack and swap the location of the toilet and tub. To keep her in the budget, he recommended a vinyl tub and shower kit instead of tile.


I came to her home and saw the challenging space in front me as well. And when I came home I started drawing the plan and the answer became clear. Move the door. That's it.


By moving the door over in the room 2 feet, it became in line with an opposite window. It opened up space at the end of the tub to create a small linen closet, and all of sudden the entire room pivoted and became symmetrical instead of unbalanced. Her plumbing costs would be dramatically reduced, and there would be room again in the budget for a beautiful tiled finish that would reflect the style she wanted.


The simple design solution wasn't clear until I drew out the space. On paper you can remove all of the elements and see the true shape of the room. If there is an element that is causing it to be unbalanced, you can identify and change that element.


Watch a free video lesson to learn the essential tip to designing a better floorplan.


As always, you will need to work with a licensed professional builder when making structural changes to your home. But by drawing your own floorplan first you will have a better vision for the design that you can discuss with your building team.

I'm a designer on a mission to help homeowners have more beautiful and less stressful renovation projects. Join my free Facebook community for advice, support and inspiration for your project!