Create the perfect teen retreat, no matter what shape or size of room
Houzz Ireland Contributor. I’m an an Architect and House Consultant based in Dublin…. More
A teen bedroom is a place of refuge, a private retreat from family life. You’ll need to provide somewhere to sleep, somewhere to study and somewhere to store clothes. With clever planning, you can accommodate these needs in even the tiniest of spaces. Think in terms of a ship’s cabin to squeeze the most out of every available centimetre.
When planning your family home, it’ll do no harm to think ahead to this stage from the outset, so radiators and wardrobes are in the best spots for the optimum teen layout.
Work the width
A room just 2m wide will allow you to place the bed across the width and beneath a window. This makes for a nice place to wake up in the morning (or afternoon, as is more likely with a teen).
Any space additional to the length of the bed can be used to create a handy bedhead for a lamp and books.
Add storage beneath the bed to create the effect of a ship’s cabin, where every centimetre is pressed into use.
Browse more inspiring photos of compact bedrooms for teenagers
Build out the bed
If the room is about 2.5m wide, you’ll be able to fit in both a bed and built-in storage across the width of the room.
This storage zone can be extended to create a desk with shelving above it. As a rule of thumb, a desk measuring 140 x 50cm will accommodate a laptop and books and be sufficient for contemporary study needs.
A pinboard, magnetic board or whiteboard between the desk and shelving above it would be a useful addition. Allow 32cm vertically between shelves to accommodate large schoolbooks.
See photos of more shelving ideas
Create a chill corner
Where height allows, a raised bed frees up valuable space beneath for other uses. Most teens would love a beanbag or cosy couch, possibly even a sofa bed for the occasional guest.
If possible, tuck in bonus storage in the access steps as well as in the sides of the under-bed area.
Sneak a study space
A desk will also sit happily beneath a raised bed. Given that a single mattress measures on average 200 x 90cm, you could even slot in some clothes storage along the length. A hanging rail 120cm high is sufficient for most clothes, so you can sculpt the wardrobe to suit the height available.
Flank the bed
Wardrobes built either side of the bed will create a cosy sleeping alcove. Leave a gap between hanging rails at the upper level and drawers at the lower level to provide useful bedside tables.
Where space is tight, the wardrobes can be just 30cm deep, with hangers stacked facing outwards as opposed to across the width of the wardrobe.
A growing teen may appreciate a bed wider than a standard single. Explore whether you can fit in a 120cm-wide queen, just 30cm wider than a standard single but offering superior stretching space.
Slot in the wardrobes
Create a sleeping alcove with a twist by placing a single bed along the length of the wall, with the wardrobes sculpted both above and along the length of the bed.
Sneak extra storage or even a pull-out mattress below the bed.
Insert a desk
Standard wardrobes measure 60cm in depth, meaning that a generous work desk can be slotted within a run of cupboards.
Exploit the space over the desk to the fullest extent by adding shelves and even extra clothes storage at the highest level.
This snug work space would work well for a teen who’s easily distracted.
Max the make-up
A teen girl will always appreciate even the tiniest of dressing tables. Your bathroom will thank you, too, with one less demand on its use.
Slip a narrow table within the run of wardrobes, perhaps near the window to maximise that all-important light. Add strong artificial light for night-time use, and, of course, a large mirror. A drawer beneath the dressing table would be handy for lotions and potions.
Shrink the dressing table
Alternatively, where space is really tight, bear in mind that a dressing table doesn’t need to be as big as a desk. A skinny surface just 30cm deep will suffice for the budding make-up artist.
Starlet lights around a large mirror will lend glamour.
Make sure you protect the table top from inevitable spills and stains. Opal or clear glass cut to size will work well.
Do you have any space-maxing bedroom tips to share? Let us know in the Comments section.