Creative sleeping spaces in a tiny house? - Mothering Forums

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Old 05-06-2010, 07:16 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I think it's important for each child to have a little niche that is their own, even if it's really small. What have those of you with large families and small houses done for this issue?

We have a 7 yr old ds, and 4 yr old dd, and an almost 2 yr old dd. There are two bedrooms in our house. The main bedroom is decent size; we have two full size beds pushed together. Dh and I sleep in one, dd's sleep in the other. We have a second bedroom that ds sleeps in; it is pretty small and has the washer and dryer at one end of it.

I'm really looking for some ideas. Due to financial reasons, we will most likely be in this house for quite some time. We would really love to have another baby, possibly even two. But I'm at a bit of a loss as to where to put everyone! We have always coslept as long as our children have wanted to be near us, but I'm feeling like our 4 yr old lately has been showing signs of wanting her own little space.

Any creative ideas to carve a niche, even just a spot for a bed and a shelf? Our living room is fairly large, and there is an unfinished loft (with a steep stairway) we use for storage, but it would require pretty extensive remodeling to make it useable sleeping space. There would be room in ds's room for bunk beds (or possibly another twin bed), but he would heartily protest to having to share a room with his sisters.

How have you dealt with this in your own small house?

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Old 05-06-2010, 10:59 PM
 
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Although your DS may heartily protest, I think that putting bunk beds in his room is the logical solution, and much more fair to your DDs.

Limited space and finances can in reality sometimes define how big a family can practically become....this was true in our lives as we had to stop at 3 children, due to a severe lack of space and money. Our children were a bit older than yours and old enough to express their concern about more children, and the two oldest actually asked us not to have a fourth child, as they were anxious about it. Of course it is your decision about having more, however I am feeling concerned for you as you sound already as if you are all very cramped.

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Old 05-07-2010, 11:52 AM
 
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I would agree that, while important to find ways to make everyone comfy and having their space, in your situation I don't think it's fair for your son to have the only bedROOM to himself. My kids adore bunk beds. My older two have their own rooms, but in reality they end up sleeping in my ds room in the bunk beds. (these are a sister/brother pair that have LOADS of sibling rivalry issues. It all ends at bedtime, they have their own system and the 3 year old is even drawn to spending time in there before bed. Reading, drawing, etc)

I would recommend bunk beds for sleeping, for sure. I would also make a few spots through the house that can be claimed as private i.e. a reading nook that your ds can get away to, or a little folding table for art projects that can be put away, to give everyone a little space.

And longer term, I would remodel the loft into a sleeping area for your son, and turn the little bedroom into a girls room. Can the washer and dryer be put in the garage or outdoors? I think I would happily do laundry outside to get more bedroom space in your situation

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Old 05-08-2010, 06:10 PM
 
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i agree with shelley...loft for ds and bunk beds for the girls. eventually you oculd put a second child with ds. i dotn' think sharing a room is bad at all.

amanda... lovin' my dh since 2004 and mama to dd (3), ds (18 months) and expecting someone new Oct 2010.
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Old 05-08-2010, 06:43 PM
 
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Hmmmm... perhaps move your "big bed/adult bed" into the smaller room with the laundry and adapt the larger bedroom for the kiddos? Perhaps a loft bed turned at angles to a bunk bed? The girls could share the bunk bed, your son would have the loft bed and space beneath it. If it's turned the right way the loft/under loft would be visually private from the bunk beds.

Depending on how the room is shaped you could hang fabric curtains to create private zones, or build a neat playstructure that would act as a room divider? For a while we had little pop up tents, fabric 'tents' (hang fabric from ceiling using a hoop to create a cone), and corners "hidden" by bookcases to give the kiddos private spaces. We are a family of five in a two room cabin (~850sq/ft), and we're thinking about a 4th child too, so we've tried out a lot of ideas!

Right now we all sleep together in the "loft" room. The "big bed" holds dh/ds/myself and we have a queen sized air mattress for the girls. The air mattress spends the day on top of our queen sized "big bed" and is pulled down for sleeping... but we've had other set-ups. Like, DH built a bed surround for a Target sleeper couch. It created a headboard and "wings" for the sleeper... it added visual privacy (when turned so that the "back" of the 6 foot high headboard faced into the room) as well as storage (clothing, books, toy storage built in) and the girls liked painting it.

But really... putting the kiddos and their "stuff" in the bigger room might help. And if you set a bunk bed or two twins against the back of the loft bed each kiddo would have some visual privacy.

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Old 05-09-2010, 08:40 AM
 
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I absolutely love bunkbed style beds.I have seen some with 3 beds,but I want one with a bed on top and either a desk or a futon/bed on the bottom that can be folded up as a couch.Some have a desk on the side,or drawers on either side.

When I was a kid I had what I think was a trundle style bed that had a bed you could pull out from under the other bed like a drawer.I do like these types too since having the kids sleep up in the air is not REALLY my ideal,but it allows us to fit more in less space.
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Old 05-09-2010, 08:47 AM
 
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I absolutely love bunkbed style beds.I have seen some with 3 beds,but I want one with a bed on top and either a desk or a futon/bed on the bottom that can be folded up as a couch.Some have a desk on the side,or drawers on either side.

When I was a kid I had what I think was a trundle style bed that had a bed you could pull out from under the other bed like a drawer.I do like these types too since having the kids sleep up in the air is not REALLY my ideal,but it allows us to fit more in less space.
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Old 05-10-2010, 12:58 AM
 
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We are a family of 4 in a 900sq ft house, with 2 bedrooms. The kids have the master bedroom since it's absolutely massive. I have the teeny weeny second bedroom that barely fits a full-sized bed and a dresser. We have a set of bunk beds and a twin bed. They are never ever ever allowed on each other's beds for any reason. That is their own personal space where no one can go. They all have headboards with a bookcase built-in so they can store their special trinkets without fear of them being touched. The toys and the rest of the space is communal property to be shared but their beds and bookcases are their own and no one is allowed to touch. And with priviledge comes responsibility. I don't make the beds since the beds are private property. They are responsible for making their beds if we have company coming, but otherwise they can leave them messy and unkempt because I just don't care.

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Old 05-12-2010, 04:32 PM
 
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I think bunkbeds sounds like a fun idea! I would also give up the big room for the kids. Everyone already had great ideas! You could even do curtains around the bunks to give more privacy. 2 bunkbeds end to end would be cool, especially if you had another boy! boys in one bunk, girls in the other. I LOVE thinking about furniture setups!

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Old 05-12-2010, 09:57 PM
 
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Could you install a murphy bed? My IL did that with their small house. They moved into the living room. They bought just the frame and built their own cabinet for the murphy bed.

You could get rid of the couch/living room furniture. Put the bed out there against a wall. Put a bunch of pillows against the wall and use that for a couch instead.

Give the girls the bedroom and your son can keep the other room. Change things up again when you have another child.

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Old 05-13-2010, 09:41 PM
 
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I got a tundle style bed for my two girls to share. If needed be I could fit another trundle style bed in their room. I don't like bunk beds for small children so these worked out really well. The girls love to lay on the trundle bed when its tucked under the big bed (its a Japanese style tundle so its a little different from the american) and play under there together.Even a bunk beds with a trundle like they sale in the states wouldn't be bad.

Honestly in your position Id probably move the bigger adult bed into the smaller room and get two bunkbeds (maybe one with a trundle underneath) for the bigger room for the children to use.

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Old 05-13-2010, 09:52 PM
 
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In your shoes I would eventually set up the loft area as *your* room if that's feasible, once you're finished co-sleeping and the kids are an age where they can get to you without being hurt if needed. There are also ways to add some privacy opaque glass blocks or wall to make your space more your own. Then your son could have the small room and the girls could have space carved out in the big room. I like the idea of lofts for them with desks/play areas (with silks covering them if more privacy is needed) underneath.

I live in NYC and we have to get VERY creative with space.

We have a 600 sf 1BD right now and make it work, though we'll be moving to a bigger space soon. One apartment we looked at actually had a massive entry hallway that we were going to convert to a walkthrough bedroom for our son.
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