15 spare bedroom ideas: from craft rooms to home gyms

Be inspired to make the most of that extra space with these smart spare room ideas

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What to do with a spare room (if you’re lucky enough to have one)? If you live out in the sticks then you may well need to dedicate this space to those friends and family who can’t really visit without staying over.

But if you rarely have guests, the spare room is your, well, oyster, to do with what you please.

From home cinemas to gyms and libraries, here are the most creative ways to enjoy that spare bedroom.

1. Bright idea

While you may be reticent about going too bold with the colour scheme in your own bedroom, having a spare room is a fantastic opportunity to be more daring with colour and pattern.

You can build this look entirely – bedlinen, cushions and all – at Amara.

colourful bedroom with hot orange and blue

(Image: © Amara)

2. Lounge around

Channel Mad Men and reserve a relaxing space to sit back, play a record and enjoy an Old Fashioned.

Cuckooland’s tub chair (£489) is more 1920s than 1960s-inspired, but it has the same cocktail-hour vibe, perfect for a grown-up man cave like this.

Velvet upholstered tub chair in a man cave

(Image: © Cuckooland)

3. All write

How inviting is this little room? There’s something quite ‘Jane Austen’ about the combination of quaint writing desk and day bed. The perfect place to do a spot of letter-writing before retiring for an afternoon nap.

This scheme was put together by designer Rosalind Wilson.

a guest bedroom with a quaint writing desk in front of a window

(Image: © Rosalind Wilson)

4. Sewn up

Those rolls of fabric, mannequins and sewing apparatus sure take up a lot of space. With the luxury of a spare bedroom you can create a craft studio of sorts.

Head to Ikea for ideas on how to perfect your creative space.

craft room in a spare room with storage for wool and materials

(Image: © Ikea)

5. Global traveller

Turn your spare room into an exotic hideaway that evokes your favourite holiday destination.

Kalinko’s home accessories will (however briefly) transport you to far-flung Burma, where they are made by hand.

eclectic travel inspired spare bedroom

(Image: © Kalinko)

6. Book in

If you’re unlikely to need a dedicated guest bedroom, how about investing in a home library instead?

Neville Johnson’s bespoke shelving makes this the perfect light and breezy reading space.

a library room with floor-to-ceiling custom built shelving

(Image: © Neville Johnson)

7. Packs a punch

Whatever your workout of choice, your spare room is a good place to burn some calories. Invest in a treadmill or punch bag for relieving end of day stress.

As Pottery Barn demonstrates here, a home gym needn’t lack style.

home gym with a punchbag

(Image: © Pottery Barn)

8. Hot desking

No one does 70s Hollywood glamour quite like designer Jonathan Adler. With a whole spare room to play with you can create the work space of your dreams – starting with this striking Channing desk (£1,950).

Channing desk in a glam home office by Jonathan Adler

(Image: © Jonathan Adler)

9. It's a wrap

In busy households it’s helpful to have a decent wrapping station – that is, an organised spot to store giftwrap, cards and stationery. It might sound extravagant, but it won't just come in useful at Christmas if you have children who seem to attend birthday parties almost weekly. 

It can double as an office space too. Brintons show how it’s done with a functional yet homely integrated workspace.

wrapping station desk space

(Image: © Brintons)

10. Make up

If you don’t have the square footage for a dressing table in your bedroom, reserve a space in your spare room to store those beauty essentials.

Habitat’s Brodi design (£250) is so compact that it could double as a bedside table for any guests, too.

Guest room with dressing table

(Image: © Habitat)

11. Go for a walk

What could be more indulgent than a bespoke walk-in wardrobe? If your own bedroom is severely lacking in storage space, this could be the best use for that spare room.

NEJ Stevenson are a good go-to for bespoke cabinetry and wardrobes.

walk in wardrobe with mirrors

(Image: © NEJ Stevenson)

12. Double duty

When overnight guests are few and far between, a sofa bed really comes into it’s own, allowing you to reserve the spare room for use as an office or snug, instead of a dedicated bedroom.

Sofa.com’s Henry ‘bed in a box’ looks like a footstool but folds out, providing an extra place to crash when needed.

Henry bed in a box by Sofa.com

(Image: © Sofa.com)

13. Super snug

Combine a woodburning stove with Netflix and you have yourself an irresistible duo. For those days when the rest of the house is too darn drafty, an aptly named ‘snug’ is your best friend.

Danish-made Morso stoves are guaranteed to keep you cosy.

Morso woodburning stove in a snug

(Image: © Morso)

14. Picture perfect

Make staying in the new going out with a home movie-screening room. All you really need is some good seating and a blank wall to project films onto. Plus an obligatory bar cart, or popcorn machine.

Coleccion Alexandra UK specialises in cinema rooms, if you’re after something more on the luxe side.

Home cinema and games room

(Image: © Coleccion Alexandra UK)

15. Comfort zone

Create the ultimate escape for your guests – or yourself – by giving your spare room a 5*-hotel-worthy makeover. 

Quality bedlinen is key. The White Company has everything you could possibly need in this department – their Brompton bed linen costs from £35.

White bed linen in a guest bedroom

(Image: © The White Company)