Thursday, September 17, 2009

How To Rearrange A Room Without Hurting Your Back -or- Fun With Paper Cut-outs!

I love to change things around, like rearranging the furniture for a whole new look and feel in a room. I used to rearrange my house so often that friends who came over once a week were always seeing something different.

Well those days have passed as I have moved into a little more wisdom in my "older age". My aches and pains from all those years of indiscriminately moving furniture have caught up with my body! I had to come up with a better way to change a room, without injuring myself.

I decided to make a map of each room in the house. I use graph paper and make each square count as 1 square foot. I measured each wall, window, doorway, and any other built-in details that outlined the rooms, and drew them onto my graph paper. Then I measured each piece of furniture to make scale "models" of them. I "laminated" each piece of furniture with shipping tape by taping both sides and then trimming around the edges. They are much easier to handle this way.

Now I know there are nifty computer programs out there that do basically the same thing. I used to have a Mac and I made all the furniture in my Draw program, and I was able to do all of this on the screen. It worked great, until that computer died.

I went back to my paper and I found that I really enjoy the paper more. It takes me back to the days of spending hours of wonderful creativity, playing with my paper dolls and all their clothes, and with my Colorforms!

Whether you use paper or a computer program, the great thing is, you can try out an endless number of different arrangements in your rooms without moving a stitch of furniture. This saves your back, it saves time, and it makes no mess while you are trying out ideas. You end up only moving the actual furniture once, after you find the perfect arrangement on your paper. And of course the real key to saving your back here is to have a man or a strong young person in your life do the actual moving of the furniture! Just have them follow your plan.

Here's how I set mine up:

First measure each wall. Make one square on the graph paper equal one foot. It's easiest that way and is plenty big as long as you have 5 quadrille graph paper, which is 5 squares per inch. When it comes to the inches, I just round my feet to the nearest fraction of a foot. So if a wall measures 14 ft., 6 inches, of course that's 14-1/2 feet or 14-1/2 squares. 3 inches would be a quarter of a foot, or a quarter of a square, and so on. Gee, I guess all that math really did come in handy someday!

Next you'll measure each piece of furniture and make their outlines on the graph paper. Cut them out and label them. You can laminate them by putting either shipping or scotch tape on both sides, and trimming the edges. Here's all my family room furniture:

Now you can make your arrangements!

I have a set of furniture for each room in the house.

I keep them in photo pockets from a wallet photo insert.

Happy rearranging!!!

1 comment:

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