spare bedroom

Unless you live in a studio or one-bedroom apartment, there will be child/teen or guest/study rooms in your home, that I’m sure could do with a little TLC. In the Unclutter Your Universe home the second bedroom has been taken over by the Teen Techie and his computer gadgetry. For a long while now he has been responsible for the layout and design style of this space. The only cleaning that I do in this room is to vacuum each week, when I’m doing the rest of the house. Thankfully, he is reasonably tidy, putting his washing in the laundry basket daily and changing his sheets each week. The dusting, window washing and wardrobe unclutter are done less often than I would like, but usually by the end of each school term he is ready for a big clean up and will tackle it himself. Our third bedroom is often occupied by international homestay students, who are with us for a month or more. To ensure that this space is welcoming to both male and female students from varied cultures. I have kept the décor neutral and allow students to pin their own decorations on the walls to personalize the space.



When it comes to needing personal space, kids are no different than adults. They too need a personal sanctuary that they can call their own, and are happy to retreat to when they need to escape from the world. When children are in those pre teen years, they travel through the different development stages so quickly and their personal space needs to change with that. To cater for this, I would suggest choosing a basic colour pallet that can be easily updated. As the child’s personality evolves and they develop their own sense of style. Younger children usually spend lots of time on the floor playing with their toys. So, careful consideration will need to be given to toy storage and flooring options in these rooms.

kids bedroom
Photo by Bastien Jaillot on Unsplash



When your child enters the teen years, it is even more important that they have a space that they love and can retreat to. It’s a time in their lives when they need lots of privacy and a space that reflects their personality as they enter adulthood. Yes, there will be some mementoes from their childhood, but most of the childhood toys will now be banished from this space. There will be a requirement for a study desk, different clothing storage, lots of power points, internet access and often a larger bed. Often their choice of colour pallet will change to dark moodier tones, just like their temperament does.

teen bedroom
Photo by Gabriel Beaudry on Unsplash



This space needs to be a welcoming retreat for guests coming to your home. When choosing a colour pallet and decorations for this room, ideally it would cater for both male and female guests of varying ages which will provide a pampering and relaxing zone that they can retreat to. To ensure that your guest has everything that they need, take some time to consider what you would like to have provided for you when staying with friends and family or hotel accommodation.

guest bedroom
Photo by Riyaz Hyder on Unsplash



A home office or craft space does not need to be a huge room, to provide that creative space away from the rest of the home. For this space to function well is needs lots of storage and a carefully planned layout that caters to the personality and purpose of the space. Whether you are enjoying some time engrossed in your favourite hobby or hard at work completing the task at hand. This space needs to be an inspiring one that suits your personality and will welcome you into the space.

Photo by Rob Bye on Unsplash



It’s time to cast a critical eye over these rooms and take a photograph of this space. This will help you see the space as it really is. Then, take some time to ask yourself the following questions, which hopefully will give you a great starting point to work from.


  1. Does the décor match the personality and design style of the rooms occupants?
  2. Does this space meet the requirements for its intended use?
  3. Is the lighting in the room fit for purpose?
  4. Do these bedrooms have a full length mirror in each of them?
  5. Is there adequate heating and ventilation in this space?
  6. Is there enough easy access storage for each item that needs to be stored in this space?
  7. Are there enough power outlets?
  8. Do the rooms that require it, have good internet reception?
  9. If there is a bed in this space, does it provide a comfortable sleep and is dressed with quality bed linen?


Photo by Annie Spratt on Unsplash


Now, it’s time to get stuck in and give these spaces some tender loving care, turning them into spaces that its occupants will love.


  1. Remove everything from the space that you can, and give the area a thorough clean.
  2. Sort through everything that was emptied out of this space. Only keeping the things that you love, use regularly and are in good working order.
  3. If you don’t have a clear picture in your mind of how you would like this space to look. Spend some time in your favourite interiors stores, in magazines or on Pinterest getting some inspiration.
  4. Now it’s time to address any alarm bells that were set off, when answering the above questions. Remember that it’s not just about throwing money at the project. It’s about thinking outside the square. Seeing what can be re-purposed from the things you already have.
  5. When planning the layout of this room, start with the largest piece of furniture and build your plan from there.
  6. Once you have done all you can with what you already have. It’s time to compile a wish list of things you would love to acquire when the time and budget allows.
  7. Take a photo of your newly transformed bedroom and compare the before and after pics.
  8. Celebrate your achievements.
  9. Share the before and after photos on the Unclutter Your Universe Facebook and Instagram pages or add your comments in the section below.


Next week it’s all about the laundry. If there is anything about these spaces that you would like me to discuss. Drop me a line at [email protected]

  • Alicia-OneMotherHen

    We’ve just given the bedrooms an overhaul except or painting one of the rooms that need it. Must chalk in a time for that! How good does just changing the sheets on the bed feel though?! A room overhaul does wonders 🙂

    • Alicia, Giving rooms an over haul provides a boost for the occupant of that room, especially in winter when we spend so much more time indoors.

  • writeofthemiddle

    Great suggestions and I love your photographs! I recently did over my one and only spare bedroom. it was my daughter’s bedroom but she moved out just over a year ago. 🙂 #TeamLovinLife

    • Sadly, I can’t take the photographers credit for these amazing pics. They are downloaded from Unsplash, which is a free photography library that is full of amazing pics. Photography is my favourite art form, and one day would love to be able to take amazing pics like these.

  • My office is usually pretty untidy looking; but then again I do work from home so that could be why! Oh, and hubster has a desk in here too and is VERY messy. When his stuff starts encroaching on to my desk, I have no hesitation in shoving it back on to his. Grrr!

    • Janet untidy looking and messy are the same thing aren’t they? Working in this space each day, is even more of a reason to have an unclutter & organise your work space.

  • Kathy Marris

    I have lost count of how many kid’s bedroom makeovers we did when our kids still lived at home. You’re right, their bedroom space does change as they get older and it is important to make it a sanctuary for them and a space to chill out. When our kids finally moved out of home we completely changed both rooms and now one is an Airbnb room for guests. The other room is spare for when our daughter comes home to visit. As for our study, it is in serious need of a makeover and I’m going to take your advice and give it a big clean out. #TeamLovinLife

    • Our spare room is the one that has had the most makeovers. Since moving in 5yrs ago, it’s been my study while at uni, an extra lounge/sewing room and most recently for homestay students or when vacant is my home office. When we move into a city apartment next year, our teen will be starting uni and ready for an upgrade. Kathy, I’d love to see some before and after pics of your study makeover?

  • Katie @ Coffee With Katie

    We’ve got a spare room and we use it to store all kinds of bits and pieces. I have no idea where we would keep everything if we didn’t have a spare room, but I wouldn’t show it to anyone, it’s a mess (organised chaos!)

    • It sure does sound like Chaos Katie. I would suggest it’s time to unclutter this room and then organise storage for the things you use, so that this room can still be used for other things.

  • My spare room has acoustic materials in it so it’s a bit ugly right now. Need to find a good fabric to cover them in that doesn’t impact their function.