Creating Useful Spaces

Creating Useful spaces

Whilst we wait for a coat of paint to dry in our study/third bedroom I thought I’d share our latest, currently in process, project. It’s not pretty (just yet) but hopefully it’ll provide some inspiration for what you can do in small rooms.

Our third bedroom is one of these small rooms and until recently housed a cupboard with all our paperwork in (another Billy bookcase – #ikeaaddicts), a futon that had never been used and our laundry basket. It also had an annoying lump – 13/03: thanks to a geniusvI know now this is called a bulkhead, thanks mum – in the corner of the room due to the placement of our stairs. It’s fair to say it had become a bit of a dumping ground:

Creating useful spaces

I’m due to start a university course in September and although I’ve worked from the dining room table before it isn’t really an ideal study space, so we decided we needed to change the space into something that worked for us. We even sold the futon to raise a bit of cash to help with redecorating! But before I could get excited about paint we knew we needed to create some storage space and the annoying lump seemed the perfect basis on which to create a custom cupboard.

We started by removing the carpet from the top of the lump – as well as the washing basket and dirty sheets, you’ll be pleased to know. Simon also removed the moulding so that the cupboard would look cohesive with the wall once it was finished. This is what we were left with:

Creating useful spaces

Simon then began the construction of the cupboard using 4 lengths of 2.4m timber (we still have some left over). He fixed the frame to the existing walls to create a shell to attached plasterboard to.

Creating Useful SpacesCreating Useful Spaces

Once the basic frame was constructed it was secured into place using dry wall fixings. We then attached plaster board to the frame:

Creating Useful SpacesCreating Useful Spaces

Simon also added plasterboard onto the front of the frame but left a gap for our doors – bit of a blogger fail here, I don’t have any photos of this step. Then the entire wall was plastered to merge the existing lump into the new smooth plasterboard. And this is how it looks at the moment:

Creating useful spaces

Creating useful spaces

As you can see we’re already using the cupboard to store supplies in while we tackle the rest of the room! The doors are also in there – just cut from sheets of MDF and they’ll be fixed into place once we’ve finished painting. I can’t wait to share the rest of the room with you as it comes together! Also, if anybody knows what the correct name for the “annoying lump” is then please let me know – it’s driving us insane!

Update: We got doors on and painted early this week – what do you think?

Creating useful spaces

 Sharing at That DIY Party, Fridays Unfolded.


  1. March 13, 2014 / 2:49 pm

    Totally makes sense to convert the area into storage! Cannot wait to see how the room turns out!

    • Sammi
      March 13, 2014 / 3:43 pm

      Thanks Trisha! We’ve done a little bit more since these photos already 🙂

  2. Alison Agnew (@Nancherrrow)
    March 14, 2014 / 11:32 am

    What a great solution for the odd little nooks and crannies in a home. We have several in ours! Love the new cupboard and thanks for sharing at Fridays Unfolded!


    • Sammi
      March 14, 2014 / 6:39 pm

      It seems to be working well for us Alison! Thanks for hosting.

  3. Jackz
    February 15, 2018 / 12:57 am

    We built one like this a few years ago but find the depth and then the height of the cupboard makes it awkward to stow things in. How can we make better use of it? I’m disabled so just popping up and into it is very hard work.

  4. Doug
    September 8, 2018 / 3:38 pm

    The ‘bump’ is called the stairs bulkhead.

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