Space planning is the core of every interior design process and the groundwork that will determine the quality of living and the level of functionality of the property. The space planning phase is done at the very beginning of the interior design process allowing a functional floor plan drawing and furniture layout plan to be developed.

Starting with the comprehensive conversation with the client about their lifestyle, routines, and visions, the Interior Designer frames the flow of the space and continues with a detailed analysis of the best space usability. The spatial planning will define the circulation patterns through the space and natural orientation tendencies.

The interior designer will extract the routines and pathways occupants regularly use and adapt to that flow as much as possible.  The location of doors, windows, hallways, and staircases will determine the uninterrupted flow and allow the designer to create unobstructed access to these areas, as well as designing an efficient furniture layout plan to work with the natural flow.

The more efficiently the space planning adapts to the natural circulation in your home, the more comfortable and relaxed living in this environment will feel. The furniture layout plan will include all the furniture and equipment pieces, decorative elements, fittings and fixtures, and hardware placement.

Importance of space planning

Image: Design to Inspire Projects

The image above shows one of Nancy’s recent space planning projects that involved creating more functionality in wet rooms and the walk-in pantry. She talks us through her design process below:

“The powder room is the one room that you can really show off. You can do this by using your favourite tiles, adding a beautiful, framed mirror, and nice tapware.”

Before- In the powder room, the toilet was the focus. By moving the toilet to the opposite wall and replacing the hanging door with a sliding door I’ve created more space and made the vanity the new focal point. Also, as this is a guest bathroom, these changes made it more accessible, practical, and attractive.

The before picture also shows the pantry and laundry in separate rooms. The laundry had two doors and the pantry had a sliding door which takes a lot of valuable wall space that could be used for additional storage.

In the after picture, you can see that now there is one entrance to the laundry, to access the clothesline.  By taking the wall out I created more fluidity and space. Now the pantry can have more bench space as well as storage, and the storage is now shared by the pantry and laundry. The new pantry doesn’t require a sliding door as now it looks like an extension of the kitchen. The washing machine and dryer are neatly tucked away from eye view. Also, I created a little nook right near the entry from the garage door for keys, and to hang your coats. This provides function and makes it more visually appealing.”

Kitchen Layout Planning

As the heart and of the home, the kitchen requires the most careful space planning and detailing. The most efficient kitchen floorplan layout starts with the detailed floorplan drawing that includes all the space parameters following the rules of the work triangle.

The working triangle is a principle that forms the most efficient kitchen layout. The rangehood, the sink and the fridge form the backbone of the kitchen and carry out the main activities. The kitchen triangle principle is based on placing the three primary functions close enough, yet not too close, to make the kitchen efficient and functional. Exceptions to this rule are single-wall kitchens where it is geometrically not possible to form a triangle. In these situations, functionality is achieved by the proximity of these points and their arrangement. To achieve the functional kitchen triangle the sum of all three sides of the triangle needs to be between 4.0 m and 7.9 m.

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Image: Design to Inspire Projects

Open Space Planning

Open space layout is the most common layout choice in recent times; however, this arrangement can be quite challenging when it comes to space planning. Large open spaces that incorporate different zones and functions require a professional to seamlessly connect the areas while distinguishing the zones in the space. It is very easy to lose the flow in the open space and end up with a large area with a lot of or not enough furniture and a little sense of function and order.

A crucial task when it comes to space planning and the furniture layout plan in every space is to correlate the furniture proportions to the dimensions of the space. A cohesive flow from one area into the next without losing the continuum creates a balance when designing and decorating an open living space.  Symmetry, zoning, colour manipulation and the use of textures, are some of the elements that help in creating a connected, yet highly functional open-space living.

When designing an open space, Nancy Malekpour will start with hand-drawn floor plans and drawings as she does with every project. As an old-school interior designer, she believes that hand-drawn projects allow her to better feel the space and intimately connect to its character. Moreover, because of her knowledge of Feng Shui, Nancy puts a lot of focus on a personal and up-close interaction both with the space and its occupants.

Space Planning and the Aesthetics

The best interior designs seamlessly blend aesthetics and functionality down to the smallest detail.

To effectively master space planning, an experienced interior designer will fine-tune the use of finishes, colour and with practicality, lifestyle, and function.  Nancy will work closely with you to create a space tailored to you and your lifestyle and routines. Starting with the simple floor plan layout with dimensions, to the way you dress and express yourself, she will pay attention to every detail and translate your style and preferences to your living environment. At Design to Inspire, we truly believe your home is the extension of you and your energy, and we aim to make it as authentic as possible.

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Image: Design to Inspire Projects

Feng Shui and Space Planning

Hiring an Interior Designer and a Feng Shui practitioner simultaneously will bring more balance, harmony, wellbeing, and success into an individual’s life.

A Feng Shui practitioner will conduct a compass reading at the property, using the luopan or geomantic compass known as a Feng Shui compass to determine the precise direction of a structure. The following analysis will include the calculations of the Compass School reading and the Flying Star calculation, which is the most comprehensive Feng Shui technique. Information such as the year of the build of the property and extensive renovations that took place is vital for the assessment.

The Flying Star technique is the oldest and most significant Feng Shui method to determine dominant energies within the property. These energies can be responsible for many issues in occupants’ lives, such as financial difficulties, health, or relationship issues. The Feng Shui practitioner will apply the calculations to the floorplan layout, making it easy for you to understand the impact of the energies in your home.

Upon detecting the dominant energies in the property, the Feng Shui consultant will distinct the positive energies from negative ones and address them. Having auspicious energies present in the most important living areas of our homes is like having the wind to our wings, they make all our efforts worthwhile. The Feng Shui consultant will make sure these energies are properly activated and enhanced, making the most of them.

On the other hand, unfavourable or inauspicious energies are preventing our progress, interfere with our health, finances, or relationships and create challenges in our lives no matter the efforts. These energies will be remedied, put dormant, or dealt with by making changes in living arrangements so that occupants spend less time in these areas.

Conclusion

In the times we live in it became impossible to separate our well-being from our living environments.

A skillful space planning solution in combination with the Feng Shui assessment will bring numerous and most importantly, long-term benefits to your life.

If you are renovating or building a new home, make sure you reach out to Nancy before you sign off on your builder or architect’s plans, so you can avoid making costly changes that may arise when it’s too late in the construction process. Moreover, a proven Feng Shui practice is to do the assessment of the land and the layouts to determine the best directions before the build to set up your property for success from the beginning.

Contact Nancy who is an experienced designer specialising in space planning to discuss your new home build or renovation to ensure you have the optimal floor plan layout.

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