Image above: Storage large enough for suitcases, duvets, linen and other bulky items lies beneath the mattress of this lift-up storage bed by Furl, £2,610 (www.furl.co.uk).
Article by Barbara Chandler
A sense of space is a priority for Weston Homes, with its new apartments and houses designed to make the most of every centimetre. There are no space-wasting halls or corridors, while open-plan rooms flow seamlessly, one into another.
There’s plenty of useful storage – including in the bedrooms. Built-in kitchen and bathroom units are streamlined, and many of the homes have a roomy cupboard near the front door to hide boilers, meters and general clutter. Floor-to-ceiling windows add to the feeling of roominess, as do mirrored wardrobe doors and large, illuminated bathroom mirrors.
But there’s a lot you can do yourself to max out the space even more in your Weston Homes property. Start by letting your furniture work hard for you – buy items with a double use, to get the most out of your floor and wall space.
Think about furniture that’s multi-purpose and/or flexible. Leaning shelving, for example, is super-flexi – make sure it is stable, of course. And large artworks leant against walls make a different kind of style statement as they free-up your wall space.
Furniture with a double life could include an extending dining table, a sofa bed, an armchair that opens into a single bed, or sofa units that unclip, while a leather steamer trunk or a stack of three posh suitcases can offer a style moment that doubles as storage space.
For yet more hidden storage, an Ottoman stool looks fabulous in a stunning fabric, a coffee or console table with shelves and drawers is a boon, while an Ottoman lift-up storage bed conceals generous space for stashing spare bed linen, pillows and duvets.
Fold-up extra dining chairs can be stored neatly on hooks under the stairs. You can buy organisers, including plate racks and stacking shelves, to fit in cupboards and drawers to keep them tidy – and extra swing-out, pull-down rails can be installed in high cupboards.
Here are our top tips for space-conscious shopping:
From the Futon Company – experts in British small space living for over 40 years – come two narrow widths of oak ladder shelving, at £159 and £179, and an oak ladder desk at £279. These have silicone non-slip pads for top and bottom (www.futoncompany.co.uk
The Pocket Folding Tabletop ironing board by Joseph Joseph, £79.99, is fast and easy to set up. To store, the legs fold away and the board folds in half, locking into place. It comes with a cotton cover, a fixing bracket, two screws and a plug (www.lakeland.com
A narrow shelving unit, perfect for the back of a wide work surface, costs £100. Then divvy up your foodstuffs into neat storage jars, from £4 to £12.50, all from John Lewis (www.johnlewis.com
Plug-in wall lights from M&S, £99, have a “tail” of flex running down to a plug – no need to take up bedside or sofa-side table-top space with a lamp. Also shown: bedding set at £22.50, and Nord side table, £129 (www.marks-and-spencer.com
Rechargeable lights are super-flexi. Simply move them around your home or even out to the balcony. This good-looking little number is the Dome at £59 from M&S (www.marks-and-spencer.com
Evelyn folding desk comes in wood, concrete or black finish, £69, with a smaller version at £49 (www.dunelm.com
The Traveller cube velvet ottoman sits neatly at the end of a bed and costs £20 (www.dunelm.com
The O’Bright LED light is the essence of flexibility. You can adjust its height and swivel the head through 360 degrees. It’s dimmable, too. It costs £116 (www.amazon.co.uk
Perfect for the balcony of your Weston Homes apartment is a flexible “modular” furniture collection, with go-together seating, trellis and planters. £246.99 (www.forestgarden.co.uk