Need help for family room
May 21, 2014
I have 3 kids with lots of toys and a large sectional sofa... Please help me create a space for kids to play instead of middle of room and where should I place the sectional sofa.
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Lampert Dias Architects, Inc.
One option might be to move the couch away from the wall and to put all of the childrens items behind the couch on an area rug with large baskets for storing.....It is difficult to tell if you have enough room to do this but it looks like you do from the photos.
5 Likes    Bookmark   Thanked by lienbui    May 21, 2014 at 9:06PM
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Trying to figure out where sofa is in relation to fireplace.

Looks to be a large room. I think the above suggestion is a good one. Create an area somewhere that the kids will be drawn to. In the alcove, where all the photos are, you could build in storage for toys, then add a small table and chairs, a couple of bean bag chairs, etc.

7 Likes    Bookmark   Thanked by lienbui    May 21, 2014 at 9:15PM
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If you would give us clear photos of all the walls so we can see how much space you have, where furniture is in relation to TV and fireplace, and where doors and windows are, we can give you more help.

Upload your photos here using the "Attach images" button under the comment field.
1 Like    Bookmark   May 21, 2014 at 9:24PM
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Pheasant Hill Interiors
Please start by rehanging the photos.
14 Likes    Bookmark   May 21, 2014 at 9:30PM
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Cy N Di
I agree to create a play nook behind the couch. The back of the couch will create another zone. With your beautiful family photos I would paint a tree on the wall and hang the frames as if they are hanging down from each branch; a family tree for a family room :)
2 Likes    Bookmark   Thanked by lienbui    May 22, 2014 at 5:57AM
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Here is a family tree:

5 Likes    Bookmark   May 22, 2014 at 12:51PM
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Or hang up frames with more variety and space between:

13 Likes    Bookmark   Thanked by lienbui    May 22, 2014 at 12:52PM
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kathleen MK
I remember those days of toy infested living. My coping mechanism was large wicker laundry baskets behind the sofa. One is still there and our youngest is staring high school in the fall. Now it's backpacks, band instruments and stinky shoes. Also storage ottomans are great catch alls. You could make a " cocktail table" of 4 small square ones. One for each kid and one for grown ups' magazines and throws. I would pull the sectional toward the fireplace and add sofa tables or cabinets behind it. There are lots of options to hid the kid stuff. The alcove with pictures could have cube storage or storage benches.
Also consider editing and rotating the photos. Our frames have several layers photos now.
4 Likes    Bookmark   Thanked by lienbui    May 23, 2014 at 9:58PM
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Interesting photo wall. Why are the pictures so high?
1 Like    Bookmark   May 26, 2014 at 4:19AM
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Dixie Henrie
Your question makes me have questions, such as: Do they play with all those toys or could you get rid of some? Can they keep their toys in their rooms? If they have miniature rooms and can't store them there, is it possible to designate a separate room for their playroom, a room that isn't also living space for you and your husband? Even having kids share a bedroom - creating a spare bedroom to be used for the playroom might help. Having said all that, they're only little for a short time, and we've all been through this kind of chaos. They'll outgrow those types of toys soon enough.
2 Likes    Bookmark   June 5, 2014 at 2:11PM
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It is hard to tell where things are in relation to each other but from what I can see, I would give that sofa a quarter turn and scoot it up a bit and have a play area in the alcove behind. You might also consider reducing the amount of toys or moving some into their rooms.
    Bookmark   June 5, 2014 at 2:28PM
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Your family photo wall and the other photos hanging so high around the room were so distracting that I didn't even see the toys! Here's an ideabook to help you with that photo issue. The current placement is ruining your lovely space. Rule of thumb for anything hanging on walls is 5-5-75 or centers 5' above the floor, bottoms 5" above any furniture they're with and not more than 75% of the furniture's width. the center point of a large grouping like yours should be 5' above the floor.
3 Likes    Bookmark   June 5, 2014 at 2:41PM
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Design by Numbers
I would love to help you out. I'm currently looking for new spaces to feature on my site I offer affordable "virtual home makeovers" and have tons of before and afters you can check out in my portfolio as well as behind the scenes on my blog. I have attached an after photo of a space I designed that's before was similar to your.
1 Like    Bookmark   June 5, 2014 at 2:49PM
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Jane McDougal
I have 3 boys and a 1400 sq ft house. Moving the kids all into one bedroom to sleep and store books, clothes and stuffed animals was one of my best moves. That freedom up a spare bedroom for a playroom. I Ikea trofast units and 1 expedit to store the toys. And I love the photo wall that pcmom1 posted - its a much more interesting/exciting way to hang photos
3 Likes    Bookmark   June 5, 2014 at 2:50PM
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Pull the sectional more away from the wall and build a "treehouse" in the wall section. That way all of the toys can go in there.
    Bookmark   June 5, 2014 at 2:57PM
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Sewell & Co Construction Inc
try a portable screen or room divider to hide the toys/kids furniture when not in use. Put some of the photos on the divider. Or use the divider to create a play space.
    Bookmark   June 5, 2014 at 3:02PM
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I am sure this has been said before, move the couch out from the corner to in front of the gallery wall. drop the art on the gallery wall down to 12 inches from the back of the couch and limit the width to extend just beyond the sides of the couch. Get some color the wall and the sectional read the same, try using pillows. Consider Yellow, Orange or Teal blue; really any color would do. You could use more than one color. Ground the sitting area with a rug and a coffee table. Are there windows on either side of the fireplace? Cover them in colorful drapes or window coverings. TV is way too big for shelves, can you put it in another room? If not consider an armoire with closing doors for the tv. Find storage for children's toys. Good luck.
    Bookmark   June 5, 2014 at 3:03PM
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KL InIdaho
I agree, you need to create an adult, clutter-free zone and a kid zone. As previously suggested, pull the couch closer to the TV and fireplace and give the kids a zone behind.
You can give them a washable fluffy rug to lay on and a way to organize their toys. If you can afford a big shelving unit with doors, that would add interest to that cut out area, but if not, a shelving unit to hold baskets or fabric drawers in a neutral color would tone down the clutter. It's also a good habit to get the kids to put their items away before bedtime, in their bins with their names, or organize toys by type-- whatever works best. Maybe two of these units? You can supplement this with extra fabric boxes in another color:
1 Like    Bookmark   June 5, 2014 at 3:15PM
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Stamps Design Services
I would move the sofa on a diagonal so it is facing the fireplace and move the TV to wall next to it, that way you can enjoy both features. I would also get an area rug and curtains to soften the area and consider getting a different TV console, perhaps one with lots of storage, but not so tall.
I am posting some examples of how others displayed photos, even if your family is very tall the photos are hung way too high up.
4 Likes    Bookmark   June 5, 2014 at 3:17PM
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Stamps Design Services
Here are coffee tables and benches that could act as "toy boxes". You could place the benches in front of the windows to act as extra seating, when you have company or place them behind the sofa. You also might want to set a limit on how many toys each child may have in the family room and have the rest in their bedrooms.
2 Likes    Bookmark   June 5, 2014 at 3:19PM
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I can't tell the extremities of the room, but perhaps centre the tv in the alcove, flip the couch round to the corner where the tv was, then set up your play area to the other side. Both spaces open onto the tv alcove and the kids are next to you not behind you. Use a rug and conveniently placed storage as kids seats (Ikea expedit single width on side with cushions on top and baskets for toys under) or whatever fits in the alcove also. Hard to tell what happens beyond the fireplace if it would work. Perhaps silver or white frames would soften the photo wall also.
    Bookmark   June 5, 2014 at 3:53PM
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Why do the toys have to take over the Family Room? When my children were little they certainly played with their toys but when they had finished their toys were taken and stored in their room or a designated area like under the stairs etc.
3 Likes    Bookmark   June 5, 2014 at 4:18PM
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So agree with bumbles12! Make rules and stick firmly to them. I raised three children in a small home but my family room areas never looked like this. They can bring in a few toys and play but when finished they every single toy better be neatly put away in their designated areas. Might also need to do evaluation of 'needed toys' and donate many others to charity. For decorating 'less is more' so I recommend put one picture of each kid and one family picture randomly in family area but take down all those pictures and put in a family album then put a nice large elegant paintings on the walls. This room should not be took over by kids nor toys.
3 Likes    Bookmark   June 5, 2014 at 4:32PM
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whatever else you do, put the photos close to the floor so your children can see them
    Bookmark   June 5, 2014 at 4:47PM
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Dump all the frames and put white built ins in that nook to create toy storage space . With enough shelving you can display a few photos at a time and trade them out seasonally to keep them fresh and interesting. Float your furniture and get a great, colorful rug to anchor the room
2 Likes    Bookmark   June 5, 2014 at 4:49PM
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When I was young and wanted perfection in my home with three little kids and a husband, I didn't realize that soon enough, I would be roaming around in my now very clean and organized home.....counting the moments till my grandchildren would visit and give me a reality check on what is important. I remember one afternoon after bike riding and swimming, my 10 year old granddaughter said, "You are not like other grandma' a good way." She said that no one else would let 5 kids on stools and chairs, help fix dinner and splash spaghetti sauce everywhere. Homes are for living in. We slid down the stairs on cardboard and made blanket hideouts. I wish I had been as relaxed and awesome as a mom as I am as a grannie.
3 Likes    Bookmark   June 5, 2014 at 5:24PM
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Sandi Clarke
I totally agree with you.
    Bookmark   June 5, 2014 at 5:37PM
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Ruth Felice
definitely a storage unit
in the alcove turn sofa towards fireplace and put tv on opposite wall ,make it the feature wall ,add a large rug under that area,with large scale tables and a sofa tables with lamps for separation,ad a bright color or wallpaper thats more family friendly.its very beige,dont forget the art
    Bookmark   June 5, 2014 at 6:43PM
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Kathryn Peltier Design
The idea of putting storage in the alcove is a very good one. If you don't want to go custom built-ins, use base kitchen cabinets or some Ikea pieces. This would still leave room for your photos. In order to make these a pleasing focal point, first of all narrow down the number. Then, take a favorite of each child and either blow it up a bit or just matt it wider to change up the scale and have them all printed in black and white. It will look much more "designed" and cohesive and interesting. Refer back to the first photo that Stamps Design Services posted.

    Bookmark   June 5, 2014 at 9:08PM
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Michal Boucher
I would put your massive TV where all the frames are and play the frames around the TV.

Don't use all those frames though...maybe get like 4 long ones and have two on each side of the TV.

Your TV looks too big and cramped where it is now. Maybe also get two long, tall bookcases to help line that nook where you will mount the TV.

Use the small bookcase currently used to hold the TV to hold family games, kids books and toys in baskets.

You can also use one of those ottoman ideas to hold toys and make that corner (where the TV currently is) into the kids play area with that small bookcase.

Also - there are far too many toys there. Get your kids to pick their favourite ones and donate the rest to an orphanage or homeless shelter.

Can't figure out where the fireplace is in conjunction to everything else, but needs to be included somehow. It looks very alone and depressed. Maybe a giant rug from one side of the room to the fireplace? Or, if there is enough space, make it a seperate cuddle corner with two big arms chairs and its own rug to divine the cuddle corner space.

Show us after pics! :)
    Bookmark   June 13, 2014 at 11:05PM
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Michal Boucher
Also, Jesus and the vases are too big for your fireplace mantle piece. Anything there needs to fit in nicely in between the space of the window and the mantle piece. Nothing should go into the window space.

Perhaps put Jesus in a space on the bookcases that will help frame the TV space.

There also shouldn't be anything in between the two windows. I just feel it makes the windows look weird.

Maybe have words on the mantle that inspire your family or your values. Or the word Family. 2 words max and candles. And take down the pics of your kids framing the fireplace. :D
    Bookmark   June 13, 2014 at 11:17PM
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Michal Boucher
I wish there was a way to edit your comment after you've posted so you can fix all the errors you didn't see before :(
    Bookmark   June 13, 2014 at 11:21PM
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Michal Boucher
Last comment...I just counted all the photos you have hanging up in your family room. Did you know that based on the 3 photo's you provided, there are 37 photo's?

You obviously really love your kids - and that is beautiful to see. Too many walls with photo's on can be a bit over kill though. Perhaps limit it to 2 family photo walls? xx
    Bookmark   June 13, 2014 at 11:30PM
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