The Oslo’s narrow floorplans gave our Blockheads a few challenges this week, with couples needing to execute both a living and dining area within a small space.
Sadly, most pairs got it wrong – but that means there’s a lot to learn from those who knocked it out of the park.
Jesse and Mel took out top spot with their effortless, functional living area the judges didn’t want to leave. Here’s how to steal their look and achieve a lovely living area despite a tight space.
Nobody puts a fireplace in the corner
One of the biggest no-no’s to emerge from the judge’s feedback was fireplace related. In fact, it links to the other main gripe of the week: functional layouts.
That is, if you’re going to go to the effort and expense of installing a fireplace, ensure your layout incorporates it where people are lounging so they can take full advantage.
Jesse and Mel stood out from the fray with their elegant, well-proportioned fireplace (a Cannon Latitude 1500 Powerflue Gas Fireplace). They placed it front-and-centre in the living room as the feature it deserves to be.
A Natural Gas fireplace makes for a great heating option – not only adding a touch of class, but also value if you’re renovating. Built into a wall and featuring pebbles, coals or logs, you can achieve the instant cosiness of an open fire but without the high maintenance of a chimney.
Clever TV placement
The Victorian couple’s rectangular fireplace also has a lower height dimension, preventing any viewing issues with regards to TV placement. Tilting it down may have been the simple ergonomic move that won Jesse and Mel the whole week.
Sitting on Jesse and Mel’s couch, the judges noted that while the TV was mid-way up the wall in order to fit their fireplace underneath, the downward tilt allowed easy viewing sans neck pain.
This clever trick works for anyone in a small space needing to utilise the height of their room.
Rug size matters
Sounds simple, but it is surprising how many renovators fail to choose the right-sized rug for their living areas.
Rugs are an effortless way to create delineation in open floorplans; stepping from timber or tiled floors onto a soft texture signals a psychological and visual shift from one space to the next.
However, the effectiveness will all come down to size because, in this instance, it does matter.
Unlike most of the other Blockheads, Jesse and Mel’s rug was large enough for all of their furniture to happily sit on top, carving out the lounge space with style.
Keep things quiet
No other house on The Block has them and it might be their loss come auction day: Jesse and Mel’s acoustic wall panels were a big judging hit.
Acoustic panels solve a common issue in many modern homes that combine timber or tiled floors with open-plan layouts as the home winds up with unwanted noise as a result.
Wall panels manage this by brilliantly absorbing sound instead of letting it travel further with the added bonus of providing a beautiful feature akin to a work of art.
Jesse and Mel’s panelling is a stunning, timber stroke of genius that will impress potential family buyers (or those who love a bit of entertaining), especially considering the Oslo homes have a few common walls.
Bring energy to life with Natural Gas.