Finally give in to your dreams: ideas for former children’s rooms

Susanne Loacker

The children have moved out – now it’s time to plan what will become of their empty rooms. A hobby room, a dressing room, a library or a wellness spa? We present six ideas here.

A couple is sitting at an open window, with trees visible outside.
© Getty Images/Westend61

In this article

1. A room for the lady of the house

According to experts, this is the most frequent “conversion” project when a child’s room becomes available again: the mother will (finally!) get to have her own kingdom. In the past, a sewing or ironing room was often set up here, but today there are no limits to the imagination. So how about a feel-good place to retreat to, where – and that was the whole idea behind a sewing room too – you don’t always have to tidy everything away at the end of the day?

A yoga mat, or handicraft and other hobby utensils, can simply be left out. A walk-in wardrobe is another popular choice – because, let’s face it, it’s what a lot of women dream of. Shoe space is the main eye-catching feature: the “Colorado” shoe cupboard by Möbel Pfister (1100 francs (price on 22 August 2020)) not only looks great, but also offers room for an incredible 36 pairs of shoes.

A turquoise rocking chair can be seen in front of an open shoe rack with numerous women’s shoes. Next to it is a dresser on which nail polish and a beauty case can be seen.

A walk-in wardrobe with a shoe closet as the centerpiece to showcase their lavish collection – that’s what many women dream of.

2. A guest room with library

Converting a children’s room has its pitfalls: what if the kids want to come and visit and spend the night? The compromise: a library with a sofa bed. The homeowners can sit on it and read, but when guests (or their own children) come to visit, the couch can easily be converted into a bed. The triple sofa “Tuske” by La Redoute Interieurs (555 francs (price on 22 August 2020)) can be folded out into a bed. The cushion covers can easily be dry cleaned whenever necessary.

To make the library a little more modern, why not opt for a chic designer bookshelf? Giuseppe Bavuso is the designer of “Snake”, available from Architonics in various sizes. The prices are only provided on request.

A crammed bookshelf, with more books stacked on a stool next to it. There is a wooden folding ladder in front of the shelf.

Whether simple and practical or super chic: a private library will finally offer your book collection a permanent home.

3. A mini spa

Wouldn’t it be wonderful if you could pamper yourself every day in your own spa? An infrared sauna cabin could become the basis for your indoor wellness oasis. What an amazing feeling to be able to relax on an “Ivory” lounger (from Livique...about 720 francs... (price on 22 August 2020)); especially if the lamp on the ceiling can be dimmed by remote control – like the panel from Arya (from Lamp World...about 422 francs... (price on 22 August 2020)). The remote control also changes the shade of light: daylight, warm white or universal white. There’s just one thing missing: skilled hands to massage your tense neck – but maybe your partner will take care of that from time to time.

4. A craft room

A craft room does not have to be huge – but it should be cleverly furnished. The main item you need is a workbench, ideally with storage space like the compact one from Kaiser+Power (about 799 francs (price on 22 August 2020)), which also has a height-adjustable shelf. After being forced to abandon their hobby for years due to lack of space, parents can finally pursue their favorite occupation, together or individually – whether it’s mending bikes, painting, or building and restoring all kinds of useful or simply beautiful things.

A man bends over a worktable with a guitar on it; tools can be seen on the wall and on the table. Another table, a shelf and instruments are visible in the background.

Pottering about, making and mending things: both partners have the possibility to pursue their own hobby in a craft room.

5. A smoking room

For smokers, there is nothing more relaxing than a cigar or pipe after a hard day’s work. Guests can also be invited for a smoke in a smoking room, which should ideally be well ventilated. Hand-made pipes of all shapes and sizes are available from one of the last remaining pipe makers in Switzerland: Roman Peter in Affoltern am Albis.

For a stylish way to present your pipes (since one pipe usually leads to another), why not invest in a pipe board manufactured at the one-man factory in the canton of Aargau (size, wood and vinyl colors as desired, from approx. 290 francs (price on 22 August 2020)).

Cigar smokers can opt for modern, stylish humidors like the transparent model by Zino Davidoff (299 francs from Zigarrenversand (price on 22 August 2020)). The only other thing you need is comfortable seating, such as the “Horten” set (from Beliani, 1,600 francs (price on 22 August 2020)) with its vintage look.

6. An extended living room with a fireplace

If the empty children’s room is right next to the living room, you have the unique chance to create a really large living room with a fireplace. Simply knock out a wall, fit a sliding door, then all you need is a fireplace. There is a large selection available from the traditional family business Rüegg in Hinwil, Zurich Oberland, such as the unconventional “Oden”, which will take pride of place in any room (prices on request).

Conclusion: whichever alternative you choose, using the room for yourself again – and creating a little more space in other rooms at the same time – is bound to console you a little bit once your children have flown the nest. And they can still come and visit at any time if you integrate a place to sleep. In any case, we wish you a lot of fun realizing your own little creative, feel-good oasis.

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