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Make A Room Just For Yourself!


In all my years as a residential Interlor Designer I can count on one hand the number of women who actually possess a room of their own.  The concept actually seems strange, doesn’t it?  And yet, it’s quite usual to find that the Man of the House has a Woodshop down in the basement or garage, a Home Office (which, to be fair, is sometimes shared by  the couple), a Study, a “Man-Cave” complete with pool table, huge state-of-the-art TV, and fridge.  Only rarely does one find that the Lady of the House has similar ports of refuge.


If you were asked to find a room in your home that you could design just for yourself, what would you do?  I’ve suggested this to many clients, and evoke replies such as:


     “Are you kidding?  I live in a tiny Cape and the only space is already

     Jack’s Workshop.”


     “Jack and the kids have consumed every inch of this place with games and

     TV.  Besides, wherever I would go they would find me.”


     “We have to keep the Guest Bedroom because Jack’s mother visits every



     “The kids will all be in college in 6 years.  Maybe then…”



All seemingly valid and noble reasons.  But does it seem that someone important is missing from this picture?  No doubt, some homes are tiny. But given the trend toward larger homes over the past 20 years, there is most likely a spot somewhere on that domestic map that can be converted into a space which will fulfill and nurture the nurturer.  YOUR OWN DREAM SPACE. 


So what’s it going to be?  Making a room just for yourself requires some thought.  Please don’t cop out and decide to make a semi-Study “that everybody can use, and we’ll put a sleep sofa in there for when Jack’s mother stays with us”.  No.

This is your own space.  There is going to be a lock on the door.  You are not going to make it “versatile” in order to serve the purposes of everybody in your neighborhood.  Do you work in Jack’s Woodshop?  Hang out in his “Man-Cave”?

Would Jack like it if you did?


Perhaps the planning of this room is going to inspire you to channel your Inner Interior Designer, a field you have always loved, but haven’t been able to explore.  Jack hates vivid color and pattern, and although you love Jack enough to have created a whole house of beige rooms so that he would be happy, you would love the chance to pull the stops out and create that drop-dead gorgeous room without stepping on anyone’s toes.  Here’s your chance.  He’s going to hate the red sofa, and the sunflower yellow walls will scare the wits out of him, and he’ll really be sure you’ve finally lost it if he sees that area rug, but so what?  He’s not allowed in, anyway.  But why, you might ask, would I ever make a room for myself that has no distinct function other than to merely thrill me and express my own design talents?


I’ll let you answer that one.


Or on the other hand, function might be your main purpose in making a room just for yourself.  Perhaps you are a Potter who has no place to make pots.

It’s a messy passion.  No place for it in a home.  But I ask, why not?   Jack has dibs on the garage.  You can take the basement.  Or vice versa.  Be sure that you add a wall and a door and a lock.  This is your private studio. 


Now, make those pots! 


Same goes for a painting studio, quilting studio, writing studio, dancing studio, and on and on. 


Here’s one I dream of:  A room, all mine, which functions without doing a darn thing.  It’s empty.  It’s there for no other purpose than feeding my soul.  Nothing in it but pale blue walls, an eco-friendly wall-to-wall broadloom, and cushy mats  for meditation and Yoga.  And, oh yes, a sound system for transcendant music.  Now, that’s a worthwhile use of real estate!


Do not let imagined lack of space prevent you from being YOU.  It’s not just about making a room for yourself, it’s about making room for yourself.






-Karen Saloomey



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