In an earlier article we discussed the concept of quality space vs. quantity space. Often folks are thinking in terms of how much square footage they can add to their home instead of thinking about the usefulness and feel of the space that they are adding. Let’s take a more in depth look at this subject.
When you walk into a room it’s the feel of the room that makes it inviting. Additions made up of big square rooms do add space to your home, but is it the kind of space that you want? A room can indeed be too big.
You’ve probably had the experience of being in a room that’s just uncomfortable. You can’t quite put your finger on it but it feels awkward. For some reason you don’t choose to read there nor do guests tend to gather there. According to Sarah Suzanka, author of The Not So Big House, smaller rooms with details such as built-in cabinetry, elaborate trim, coffered ceilings, and varying ceiling heights can make your home more welcoming. Because of these features a Not So Big Addition isn’t necessarily less expensive than its larger counterpart, but the usability of the space is greatly enhanced.
People are drawn to reading niches, alcoves, or what I think of as “creative” space. If conversation circles are too big, guests only talk to the person next to them and not to the person across the way. Ceiling height is an important consideration as well. The height of the ceiling should be in proportion to the overall room dimensions.
Keep an open mind regarding square footage; you may not need as much space as you think. Work with a designer or design/build team to carefully plan out your space for maximum usability and comfort.