Smart alcoves add charm and comfort

Enhance underused areas with creative storage, display areas, and curl-up nooks

Landing pad

Thomas J. Story

Alcoves ― small recesses opening off a room or hallway ― add character and extra functionality to a home. Whether used for relaxing by a window, to gain storage, or for displaying art or floral arrangements, these intimate niches are effective ways to enhance underutilized areas.

LANDING PAD

When Bruce Teel redesigned this house, the owners asked for a place where the husband, a lawyer, could keep his things organized. Teel designed a "landing pad" for him in a hallway. He can stand and make phone calls from the tall desk, while drawers offer a place to store documents and loose change.

Design: Bruce Teel Architect, San Francisco (415/957-9299)

Next: An inviting spot

 

A deep seat (roughly the size of a twin bed), bookshelves, and reading lights create an inviting spot to sit by the window. With a privacy curtain that draws closed and drawers built under the seat for pillows and linens, it's easy to convert the space into a berth for overnight guests.

Design: Amy Baker Interior Design, Seattle (206/283-1969), and Stephen Bobbitt Architects, Seattle (206/728-4400)

Next: Display case

 

DISPLAY CASE

"I use niches to give a handcrafted look and create visual interest in a space," says architect Gary Ahern. This entry alcove sets the ambience for Mark Shafran's new house, creating an eye-catching element in the open hallway.

Design: Focal Point Design, Menlo Park, CA (650/326-2800), for Dream Team Builders, Menlo Park (650/322-4466) 

More: The shelves you need now

Printed from:
http://www.sunset.com/home/architecture-design/great-ideas-for-alcoves-00400000014818/