Good design is not just about looks….

Those of you with young children will know that for little things, they have an awful lot of stuff! 

Who knew that along with children came train sets, and lego sets, and dolls houses, and cuddly toys and action toys and books and bricks and games and stickers and paints and crayons and …….. the list is endless.

And if you don’t have the luxury of a dedicated play room, quite often your little ones extensive toy collection finds a home on your living room floor!

 So wouldn’t it be nice to reclaim your living room in the evening. 


To sit back when the children have gone to bed, relax in front of the fire with a nice bottle of wine and not a train set or dolls house in sight!!

Space planning is all about making the space you have work harder.

When planning your space a number of factors need to be considered:-

  1. What is the room primary used for?
  2. Who uses it?
  3. Does the space have more than one function?

But quite often we don’t get any further than “Can I see the TV from here?”

Good design is now just about how something looks, it must also be about how something works.  With proper planning and clever storage you can have the play room by day and adult relaxing space by night. 

Multi purpose furniture such as coffee tables with storage will keep a room clutter free


and window seats or footstools with lift up lids are great space saving options. 

Floor to ceiling cupboards fitted into alcoves either side of a fireplace adds symmetry to a room and is a great way to display what you want to display and hide what you want to hide.  

And how about this clever animal bag to encourage the kids to put their own toys away.   

And they get their very own soft comfy seat.

I hope I’ve given you some ideas on how to make your space work harder for you and helped you to reclaim your living room back from the kids.

If you have any space or storage questions or for more information on my services, please visit my website @

About Karen

My name is Karen Hughes and I'm an Interior Designer from Dublin, Ireland. I’m passionate about design and I started this blog as a way to connect with others just as passionate as myself. I tend to ramble on about all sorts of things, projects I’m working on, people, places and things that inspire me (and some that don’t). So put the kettle on, get comfy and settle in. I hope you enjoy your visit and don't forget to say hello. Visit my website to find out more about my services and view my work.


  1. When the kids were little, all their toys fit in our 3 antique wooden trunks in the living room but as they get bigger, the toys get bigger. Apparently, the toys will get smaller again (Nintendos etc) but for now …… . what I find great are the pull out tubs, they fit into units in their bedrooms and once they have finished playing with it, back it goes. At the moment, we have one tub here and a wooden train track covering most of the floor!

    Great post Karen.

  2. I would love to know where that Storage bench is from. Help!

  3. Hi Irene, I’m not sure which bench you’re referring to. The white storage bench with the towels and toys in it is just a standard linen box. The built in unit is custom built and the coffee table which lifts up is from Bo Concept. Hope that helps. ~ Karen

  4. Thanks for the reply. The white bench with linens and toys is great. What is a standard linen box? where can i buy that? Sorry to be so dense, it just appears to be perfect for what I need but i have no idea on those dimensions. Is it a dining bench?

  5. Hi Irene, it’s a bedroom linen box (sometimes referred to as a blanket box). They are available in most bedroom furniture suppliers and tend to come in standard bed sizes 4′ 6″, 5′ and 6′. Hope you find what you’re looking for. Karen

  6. Yeah I thought it was a blanket box but this one posted here has a back to it so you could use it like a dining bench…I guess I will keep looking.

  7. Nice post. The concept of multipurpose furniture was very nice. I like that coffee table with storage. This will save our space also. It’s just amazing concept !!!!!

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