Monday, March 12, 2012

A Sunroom In Need of Love

Last week, on Facebook, my cousin shared a couple photos of her sunroom with a request for suggestions. She's quite design savvy herself, but with this room, she's at a loss. 


It's your typical, unusable Florida room, uninsulated and, therefore, freezing in the winter and boiling hot in the summer. She tried to paint, but got half way done and decided she didn't really like it. I prodded for a few more details and learned that this is her main entrance and essentially, nothing more. She never uses the little cafe space or the tete-a-tete wicker chairs. 

I think it's too bad. This could be such a beautiful relaxing space. My parents have a similar room that they insulated and installed skylights and a wood stove in order to manage the temperature. They use it all the time, making the other two sitting rooms in their home nearly obsolete.

Of course, not everyone is able to drop the money to install a wood stove and other options, like little electric heaters, can be cheap, but hard on your electricity bill. So, for the moment, this room remains unusable.

It is, however, a main entrance. I believe entrances should be beautiful. This is the whole reason we're pouring our current efforts into our back mudroom. An entrance should lead you into a house. It should fit the personality of the house and, by association, the people who call it home. 

At the very least, it should remind you why you love being home from the moment you step in the door. 

So, what can S do to improve this space? 


These are my thoughts:

A light grey or other neutral colour would keep the ceiling bright and allow the room to remain an open, airy space. But curtains... oh, she could have some fun with curtains. I envision a combination of bright white sheers with a bold, colourful sheer, either solid, or in a pattern. I would centre the wicker chairs and little table on the long window wall and eliminate the sitting area at the other end of room. She could bring out the curtain pattern or colour with a complimentary colour on the cushions for the wicker. A small area rug would warm it up a little and possibly even make the space usable on a warm spring morning.

Because it is an entrance, I would suggest focusing on that purpose of this room. She could build a beautiful storage unit beneath the window on the brick wall and up over the freezer - which needs to stay no matter what - to disguise it and soften its presence a little. This would also give plenty of storage for shoes, hats, mittens, and scarves. She could even add a set of hooks for coats.

On Facebook, she's getting other great suggestions as well, such as painting the brick to brighten it up and adding large area rugs to warm up the floor.

Now, knowing how design savvy my readers are, we turn to you: what would you do with this space? What colours would you paint the ceiling and how would you arrange the room?

-~*~-

7 comments:

  1. That sunroom has the potential to be absolutely gorgeous!

    If it were me, I would probably paint the top an airy blue color, hang sheers along each of the windows, definitely a bright area rug, build cubbies to hold shoes and such, and definitely paint the door leading into the house a bright color.

    Hope you share the final product!

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  2. Keira - The Bennett HouseMarch 12, 2012 at 7:38 PM

    I think your ideas are great! I like the soft grey idea and would paint the brick and the ceiling the same colour. That freezer is a big problem in making the space a real sitting room/lounge area. I think I would do the same thing you suggest and build storage on that entire wall to hide it as much as possible. If they don't actually open and use all those sliding doors, a big long bench with thick cushions on top might work on the long wall of glass. You could even have a couple of folding tables and chairs to use at the bench. I don't know if she has kids, but mine would be out there doing crafts all the time! For colour, I'm with you on an area rug and sheers and I think a free standing coat rack would be useful near the front door as well. Nice to have a room like this!!

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  3. I love your ideas! And building a freezer surround as you suggested would definitely help to make the freezer feel intentional, and I like the idea of integrating entryway storage.

    I'd paint the ceiling white or light blue, ditch the blinds for curtains, and install a baseboard heater (whether electric, or one that's part of the heat for the rest of the house). If she used thicker fabric for the curtains it would help insulate against the cold (or the heat in the summer).

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  4. What a wonderful bright space! I agree that some curtains would be a lovely addition. I also like the idea of building a wall-unit of sorts to integrate the fridge, add some storage space, and maybe a place to grow some herbs/pretty, small flowers.

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  5. The view is refreshing from that sun room, and it sets a happy mood since its bright and neat. Oh how I love the flooring!

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  6. Wow! That sun room really is wonderful. It will really light up the room and perhaps help in conserving electricity.
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  7. I sure hope she didn't paint the brick!

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