Features of residential interiors

The main difference of housing interior from the public is its versatility. If in the office we are working, in a cafe or restaurant eating, in a club relaxing or doing sports, and in the cinema watching a movie, then at home we are likely to want to do the same. But more often, the provided area is much smaller. Taking into account this fact, as well as the ever-increasing price per square meter of real estate we should address to the planning and functional zoning of residential space with great care.

The first step when working on space zoning and redevelopment should be a detailed analysis of your lifestyle. It will help to identify the main functional areas, which are necessary for full existence in your home. It is necessary to evaluate and consider the following functions:
– sleep and rest;
– cooking and eating;
– hygiene procedures;
– cleaning and maintenance of premises;
– pets care;
– laundry, drying and ironing;
– recreation and entertainment;
– education and child care;
– implementation of training sessions, professional work or hobbies;
– storage of goods;
– receiving and storing information.

For happy owners of large areas (large apartments or private homes), it is worth weigh several factors that realtors usually call “criteria gentrification.” This includes availability of wardrobe rooms, a separate room for washing, drying and ironing and availability of natural lighting in the bathrooms.

Of course, the easiest way of functional space planning would be to allocate a separate room for every life function. However, in practice it is not possible, especially in a city apartment. Therefore, very often an architect designs a multifunctional space, for example, combining the living room and kitchen or locating a workplace (usually a desk and computer) in the bedroom.

Depending on the functional purpose of the premises, are changed its filling with pieces of furniture, lighting principles, color solutions, material selection. Below we describe the features of space planning for all typical areas of a house or apartment.


Theatre begins with a hanger, but an apartment starts from the hallway, say interior designers. In modern city apartments a hallway is one of the most problematic areas. Rarely the designers of typical houses provide this space sufficient in area and an acceptable configuration. On the natural light in the hallway there is no sense to speak at all.

When designing a hallway it is important to understand its functional purpose. First of all, it is a buffer zone between residential premises and the street or the entrance. In addition, each hallway is a storage place for coats and shoes. Sometimes in the hallway there is located a wardrobe or entrance to the dressing room, where you can store another clothing, except that which is used constantly. You can also store there sports equipment, household cleaning products and equipment for cleaning, some household appliances (e.g. vacuum cleaner). There is also often a telephone in the hallway. Almost an indispensable attribute of the hallway is a mirror with a console (a chest of drawers or commode), this place serves to put yourself in order before you leave home, and is one of the options for places where you can put keys and bag on arrival home.

To arrange all the necessary furniture and household items, you must remember several important ergonomic standards. The minimum width of passage for one person is 70 cm, the optimum width of the corridor, which will be able to separate two people is 120 cm. On the basis on these dimensions should be designed the arrangement of furniture and built-in cabinets. It is also worth note that when the swing doors when opening occupy a certain volume in space. Sometimes this can be avoided by providing sliding doors for built-in cabinets and furniture, but for the inner door, in any case, you should leave enough space.

Very often the hallway is a node that connects several rooms, so there can be several doors in the hallway. It is important to remember that the doors leading into the one room should be consistent with each other in style, color and finishing material.
In order to save space in the hallways sometimes there are sometimes used mezzanine for long-term storage. Mezzanine lower the level of the ceiling, they can create the oppressive feeling, so they are rarely used in living rooms. And that’s why they should be used with caution also in small hallways.

Living room

Living room is one of the most multifunctional rooms of the house. This is a place to gather and communicate for the whole family, the place to receive the guests, relax and unwind, watch movies and listen to music, a place to sit comfortably with a book, and often as a place to eat. But, despite the apparent number of functions, the main purpose of living room is a rest, and communication. Accordingly, the arrangement of furniture should allow you to implement these main functions.

The living room, as none of other rooms needs a so-called semantic center of the room. This kind of perception axis, around which there is arranged the compositional solution of furniture, finishing, decoration. Traditionally, the semantic centre in the living room was the fireplace, which was later replaced with a TV, and then with home cinema. However, the semantic center may also be some interesting architectural element, such as column or bay window.

When placing furniture in the living room, you should take into account its size and the optimal distance between objects. For example, the distance from the chair and the sofa to the TV screen should not be less than two metres, in order not to increase eye strain. There is a formula to determine the optimal distance from the TV: the minimum distance from the TV screen to the eyes should be three of its diagonals. Maximum – five diagonals. Vertically, the TV should be located so that the centre of the screen was approximately at the height of the face of sitting person.

Also important is the distance between the objects of upholstered furniture. The optimal distance to the face of your companion, in which the communication will be the most comfortable, is 1.5 meters. It is better to locate upholstered furniture so that the companions, if possible, were facing each other. That is why in recent years so popular was the principle of 2 +2, where two small sofas are located opposite each other, separated by a coffee table.

In the living room as in none of other rooms zoning of the area with light is very important. The more functional areas the living room includes, the more complex shpuld be the light system.

Classic chandelier in the middle of the room may also be present, but it is clearly inadequate, and may be supplemented by a variety of sconces, floor lamps, backlights, and so on.

Recently, the fireplaces in the living room again came to fashion. Even if you are the owner of a typical apartment that is not provided with the chimney, this fact will not be an obstacle if you want to install a fireplace in the house. There is a very wide range of fireplaces without chimney in the market ranging from electric fireplaces and ending with those on oil fuel.
If the living room serves also as a dining room, then in addition to the mandatory sofa group, it also must have a dining table with chairs, also possible chest of drawers or a cupboard.

In small apartments, the living room often serves also a sleeping room. In this case, special attention should be given the choice of the sofa – usually are preferred corner folding models, although this is not the only option.

Designing the living room, you should consider in advance the wiring of electric cables for lighting and equipment. It is especially important if the semantic center of your living room is TV or home cinema. In this case, you must think in advance about how to hide all the wires in the walls or behind furnishings. To do this, it is better to know in advance the model of TV, but there is a possibility of a universal connection.

Dining room

Quite rare nowadays there is a situation when the dining room is situated in a separate room. Most often it is a functional zone of the kitchen or living room. This is because the meals are short-term and the dining room isolated in a separate room will be empty most of the time. However, if a family is large or you often receive the guests in your house the value of the dining room can not be overestimated.

Dining room is a room with a clear and single-valued function, and therefore its design is quite simple and does not contain so many nuances as the design of other premises. The main principle of forming the space of a dining room is its symmetry. In the center of the room there is a dining table with chairs. The size of the table depends on the composition of the family, the planned number of guests, as well as on the size of the room – around the table there should be enough space for people sitting, as well as for the free movement around. Thus, the distance from the edge of the table to the wall or a piece of furniture (chest of drawers, cupboard) shall not be less than 140cm. A minimum distance of 70 cm is necessary to move around the room and another 70cm for the comfort of a person sitting on the chair.

Also in the dining room there can be a locker or a cupboard if they will have an easy access and enough space to open the doors.

Dining room is usually located near the kitchen, so the doors have an important role in the interior of the dining room. They should be situated symmetrically and can be a great semantic center of the room.

The lighting solution in the dining room most often is traditional – a chandelier in the center of the room, directly above the dining table. But do not neglect also the local lighting, which helps to create a cozy chamber atmosphere.