Ideas for Room We're Going to Rent?

Good Questions

Q: My girlfriend and I live in a Victorian building, in an apartment that can be used either as a 2 bedroom or a 1 bedroom with a dining room. We just had a roommate move out, so we now have a large room (230'' x 139 1/2'')that we plan to rent out periodically as a short-term lease, a few weeks or a couple of months at a time.

For this reason we will need a bed of some kind, and space to hang and store clothes. However, the rest of the time we wish to use it as a second living room (we already have a smaller one with the TV), with plenty of seating for friends and even a dining table to eat or work at. Also, my girlfriend would like to have a reading area in the bay window while the room is not rented.

We would like to keep with the Victorian style of the building but with a parlor-Bohemian edge. We like “shabby-chic”, though not as feminine and with more color. We were thinking a bit more handsome with leather and old Persian-style rugs etc., but we are open to suggestions. We also appreciate the organic simplicity and smooth lines of mid-century furniture, if mixed up with other stuff.

We’re hoping someone can advise us on creative and clever ways to furnish a dual-purpose room like this, beyond the obvious sleeper-sofa.

Considerations:
• It’s all about Craigslist and flea markets because we have little cash
• We already have a sofa and tv in the room that adjoins it. We also have a small table in the kitchen we can use as well outside the new living room space.
• Narrow doorways in building, so it’s hard to bring in really large furniture/sofas

Questions:
• What furniture items would work best for place?
• How should we arrange furniture – have a few ideas, but would like go get everyone’s input first
• Should we try to find a sleeper sofa or just use twin bed and convert into sofa with pillows?
• Paint color for room – maybe light green or something else?
• Build in bookshelf (believe it was formerly a Murphy bed) – should we hire someone to convert into closet or could we put in an armoire? If we placed an armoire in the space it would stick out a bit as well.

We look forward to hearing your ideas. Picture and drawings are encouraged as well.
Sent by Scott & Becky

Editor: Please share your design ideas for their room with Scott and Becky in the comments below - thanks!

• Got a question? Email yours with pic attachments here (those with pics get answered first)

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Janel Laban is the Executive Editor of Apartment Therapy and has been working here, at the dreamiest of dream jobs, since March 2006.