Most families are not as large today as they were two generations ago. It was common for a couple to share a two bedroom semi detached house with eleven or twelve children. Think about what it must have been like with no bathroom and an outside toilet. There are very few families of that size today, but if you are the head of one, there is some good advice here that will show you how to live an organised life in pleasant surroundings.

Here are my top secret furnishing ideas for homes with large families.

The Kitchen

Have you ever wondered what is hiding below your kitchen cupboards.? Behind the kickboards that you spend so much time scrubbing the scuffs off? The wasted space under the cabinets is the perfect size for standing tins of food. Remove the kickboards and build some drawers in there instead. They only need to be simple boxes that slide in and out on the floor. anything more than that, fitting castors on them, for example, will reduce the height available for storage.

There is also a lot of wasted space on top of the kitchen wall cupboards. Extend the useful storage space by putting up shelves in that space. Of course, you will need a stepladder to access the items up there but it is a small price to pay to relieve your bursting cabinets.

The Dining Room

It is important for a family to eat together, and extending dining tables are the answer. Beautiful wooden pieces come with removable leaves, so a small table turns into a very large one easily. Dining chairs are a bigger problem because they take up so much space. Buy folding chairs, available for about seven pounds each, that are quite good considering how cheap they are. They are easily stored in the cupboard under the stairs, out of sight.

The Living Room

A three piece suite is not very suitable for large families. To accommodate even the little ones, corner sofas from Multiyork are an ideal solution. Sofas are far more versatile than chairs, and more people can squeeze onto them.

The Bedrooms

Bunk beds are the obvious solution to crowded bedrooms. Try to avoid metal framed units that, though they look attractive, will drive you mad with the noise they make every time someone moves in them at night. Wooden bunk beds come in the same variations of their metal counterparts. There are twin bunks, bunk on top with a double bed below, or bunk on top with a sofa bed below, to list but a few.

Whether the other beds are singles or doubles, a lot of space is usually wasted below them. Manufacturers and designers have come up with some brilliant solutions to make use of this space. The top of the bed is hinged and counterweighted or sprung, so it is easy to lift it and the mattress up for access to a massive storage area. These beds have been used in holiday homes for years but are now popular in all homes.

It is obvious that having a large family should not mean you should compromise on good furniture. Just think a little differently and have an innovative approach towards problems as they arise. Everything has a solution.



image from flickr