Flaunt That Alcove Space

Johannes van Graan Johannes van Graan
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An alcove space, that small weird area with some protruding side-walls, can present a tricky area in your home. As it is definitely too small to function as a stand-alone room (good luck turning that alcove into a guest bathroom!), most homeowners view this funky little zone as a head scratcher.

Enter homify, where we always love a challenge as a chance to showcase our ideas for style and our love for aesthetics. Stop viewing that alcove in your home as a problem and start seeing as an attractive focal point that can enhance your room’s character – if carefully planned and executed.

Depending on its size and structure, that tricky space can be used to your advantage, and can house anything from a single piece of furniture to a whole range of small décor items.

But what exactly are our options? Let’s take a look!

Add mirrors

modern Living room by Rupert Bevan Ltd
Rupert Bevan Ltd

Antiqued Mirror Alcoves to Fireplace Wall

Rupert Bevan Ltd

If you’re seeking a deluxe look in your room, mirrors can be the ideal option for that alcove space. The mirrors can be cut to the size of the alcove to create a wonderful backing, enlarging your room in an instant. In addition, the mirrors will also reflect the natural light streaming in through the window, so you know it will only make your room seem brighter and more enchanting. 

But what about adding glass shelves to that mirror alcove for your décor? It is sure to add even more layered depth, making the alcove feel like a window or passageway into another room. Just be sure not clutter those shelves with too many trinkets, as you want to leave lots of breathing room and still want to see generous portions of that mirror.

Add bookshelves

rustic Living room by Style Within
Style Within

Alcove Storage in Edwardian Sitting Rom

Style Within

Your quirky little alcove can present the perfect space for creating a small library. Why not place a stunning bookcase into that opening? Filling it up with a multitude of books can instantly make you seem like a well-read individual, with rows and rows of titles displaying your taste in high-class literature. Or you can add some top-choice coffee table books to those shelves, with those artwork covers (instead of the spines) facing the front. 

If you don’t want to drag an entire bookcase into that alcove, then consider installing shelves to instantly maximise your room’s space (similar to what we mentioned in our first tips). As with wall-hung bathroom fittings where the floor is left clean, your room will feel much bigger while also displaying some fancy reading material.   

But you’re not forced to go the book route, as some prime vases and collectables can also spruce up your new shelf space. To accentuate the crisp and uncluttered feel you want to go for, keep the storage simple and let your shelves display clean lines and the occasional open gap in-between those books and decorative ornaments (framed photos, a vase or two, etc.).

Flaunt some fabulous wall coverings

Create a soft yet stunning atmosphere by lining that alcove with striking wallpaper. If wallpaper is not your thing, then opt for an eye-catching coat of paint, as it can also draw eyes to that alcove space that you had no idea what to do with, only this time in a good way! 

But why stop there? That small space with its superb new colours can be made much more inviting by introducing some seating, such as a large and fluffy couch or just a small-scaled wingback. 

The added colour and pattern of the chair (remember that throw pillow) can either blend in beautifully with your new alcove wall colour, or contrast creatively with it – it’s your choice which look you want to go for!

Hang a picture gallery

Your selection of family photos and/or wall art may have just found the ideal hanging spot. 

But conjuring up a gallery wall does require some clever planning. First, you need to determine what kind of style you want your gallery wall to be. Take a look around the room: would classic black-and-white images work best with your furnishings and décor, or do you feel that colourful artwork or objects would make the alcove pop better? 

Do you want an ordered, symmetrical wall, or would you prefer an organic, free-flowing collection?

For more in-depth tips on getting that gallery wall just perfect, be sure to see: Display your wall art like a pro.

Make a small workspace

If you’re a bit pressed for space in your home and you can’t afford to transform an entire room into a study or home office, there is no need to resort to a renovation. That alcove can be the perfect alternative. 

Alcoves are often the perfect size for a comfy little desk which can serve as a comfortable writing surface or a place to do some after-hours work from home. A neat little table and comfortable chair is all you need really, plus, of course, a plant or other decorative to add some style to your new work space. 

Now if you really want to get going on this idea, you could even hang some floating shelves above that desk, or opt to have the back wall painted in practical blackboard paint.

Your own reading corner

We all need those moments to relax, meditate, and just let our stress levels descend. For a lot of us, that includes leaving the world’s worries behind while losing ourselves in a good book. And that alcove of yours might just be the perfect spot for such occasions. 

Add a comfortable chair in which you can sit and read, or opt for some pillows and natural fabrics on the floor (just be sure your reading spot is soft and comfy and doesn’t cause you any soreness). 

Ensure adequate lighting for your reading, and maybe a small side table for your book(s), lamp, or a potted plant?

Turn it into a vanity area

classic Bedroom by Paco Escrivá Muebles
Paco Escrivá Muebles

Tocador clásico nogal Barnet

Paco Escrivá Muebles

Who says applying makeup and styling hair is restricted to the bedroom/bathroom? If you don’t have space in your bedroom for that giant dream dresser, then create your own one, no matter if that alcove is in your living room—just be sure to leave it in a neat and stylish state. 

Fit a slim dressing table into the space (they are available in almost any size). Complete the look of luxury with some fantastic wall coverings (wallpaper or paint), a marvellous mirror, and a tasteful yet comfortable stool. Then dress it up to your liking with some wall art, décor, and a few other chic touches.

Built-in seating

Like bay windows, alcoves are also perfect spots for creating bench-style seats with flip-up tops. This immediately injects some storage opportunities for items like folding seats, beach stuff, Christmas decorations, etc. 

Your built-in seating can easily be updated by changing the upholstery fabric every few years. Or opt for plain and neutral fabric, and rely on scatter cushions to update that look whenever you need a change (or example, switching to fiery hot colours in winter, and changing those scatter cushions to cool blues and greens as soon as summer rolls around).

What other tips can you think of to transform that alcove into a fabulous and functional area? Please let us know, below:
modern Houses by Casas inHAUS

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