Part 6 and 7: NYND. Space Planning.

Back to the technical on this Tuesday morning. We are going into analyzing and planning your spaces.

First a word. Tuesday, is my least favorite day of the week. I mean the only thing good that happened on a Tuesday was Wimpy from Popeye repaid his hamburger debt.

But – today is my big brothers B-day! So happy birthday to You Michael. He is kinda a big deal to me because he gave me a kidney and all. Thank you for  – well, my life!

Back to you, my pepole. It’s tuesday. So how perfect of us to go into a subject which homeowners typically ignore. Because this space planning step is boring and whack!

As boring as it is, the shiznit is important. The number one thing that gets me design jobs is lack of space planning. The homeowners taste can be on point, but if there is no consideration to planning or scale, then the whole room goes to the dogs.

Becoming familiar with your room….Every room has something that you need to consider while you are decorating — a carpet color, cathedral ceiling or certain furniture pieces that you MUST include in your design plan. Take some time to jot down these special needs and the rooms features so they are fresh in your mind during the planning phase. Take this time to also note what you love and would like to improve in the space.

For Example:


  1. long room
  2. traffic pattern is weird.


  1. room feels open
  2. my family rooms looks to the backyard
  3. feels open to the kitchen


  1. want more space for a dining room
  2. more natural light
  3. my flooring sucks
  4. I want trim work and molding

With this we then want to think about solutions to our “room beefs” and address them. Especially if they will impact our budget. We also want to celebrate what we love. See my solutions below


  1. long room – plan can be in zones
  2. Traffic flow is weird


  1. room feels open –
  2. my family rooms looks to the backyard
  3. feels open to the kitchen


  1. want more space for a dining room – Bring down the wall to make it feel more open…
  2. more natural light – Can I afford adding windows/Can lighting?
  3. my flooring sucks – Can I afford adding windows/Can lighting?
  4. I want trim work and molding Crown Molding and new Baseboards are a must!!

Some of the Above solutions require contractors. And if you are there focus on working on those. Then once walls are down, windows are added, and doors are moved, you would want to use that new plan to go forward with your new furnishings. However, some spaces just need a little furniture moving..

Lets analyze what you are dealing with now…

Current Flow

from the book 12 Steps To Designing Your Interiors

See how I made some simple changes to make the room flow better.

ste 6 solution

from the book 12 Steps To Designing Your Interiors

I make this look easy. But in reality it is not. Even in my own home I struggle. I cannot complete or analyze my home on a whim like that. In order to get some clarity you have to set aside time to measure your space, your windows, your doors, your belongings (that are staying in the room) and put them to paper. – Yep. It’s a Tuesday.

You can do this online there are plenty of floor planning websites that are free available to the general public. However, given the simple learning curve, to some the easiest way to do a floor plan in your home is a piece of graph paper,  a pencil, an eraser, and a ruler. I am starting with that then putting it onto a space planning site.

Voila: Here is some graph paper for you to print and use:

If you prefer the software, I have an awesome one… AutoDesk Homestyler!

I love it because it is simple, and very user friendly. It even gives you a detailed shopping list once you have everything in place. For my examples I am using software that I use with my design projects.

1st draw up the shell of your room…

Layout empty

Then, use software to come up with a bare floor plan.

plan to computer

STOP. Before you get carried away and start plopping in furniture everywhere, you need to print out some copies of this floor plan. Or save this barebones plan separately.  I guarantee you will need to start over and you need a footprint so you can have options for your room.

With the basic plan saved.

We can now move to STEP 7…

Completing your furniture plan options.

remember your inventory & shopping lists that you started? Grab those. Because you are ready to create your floor plans. You will also need to think about your above solutions to your basic beefs with your current floor plan.

Using your copies of the bones of your room, a ruler and a pencil (or computer), draw in the furniture from your inventory list. Measure your current furniture or pieces you are keeping and begin placing it in your floor plan numbering each item.

Generally, the main furniture pieces are directed towards the focal point, keeping the major traffic patterns open. Fill in with pieces you’d listed on your shopping list, keep in mind your functional needs, seating requirements, etc. Be sure to balance high and low pieces, as well as heavy and light ones around the room. Try to have alternate floor plans to choose from. When choosing which option works best, think of how you will use the room and if the plan seems balanced.

Completed plan 1

competed floor plan 2 and 3

Feeling proud of your self???? Well you should be feeling proud of yourself because we are more than halfway through designing your new room. You should also have a newfound appreciation for what interior designers do every day as well… 😉

If you still feel stuck (or like you have no clue what you are doing) You can hire me! But if you cannot afford me, I even have made it a cheat sheet for things to consider when you are in the midst of floor planning.

by Tiffany Brooks

by Tiffany Brooks

Lord. A lot to remember huh? Well folks I think I overwhelmed you enough for today. Next, we are going to start addressing things such as adding your lighting and we’re doing elevations! #YAY

Wanna read ahead?

If so, you can download “12 Steps To Designing Your Interiors” (the entire e-book) by clicking the image here:

12 steps

The book comes with all of the done for you worksheets and guides that you will need to get started on your space.

Many Blessings!

Your Interior Designer & HGTV Host

Tiffany Brooks



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