20 spare room ideas – from WFH spaces to home gyms, and en suite bedrooms

These spare room ideas will inspire you to make the most of that extra room in your home, be it a home gym, home office or even craft room

a luxurious spare room with a red armchair and rug, and a huge sage green built in bookcase unit with lots of books in it, and a brick covered-up fireplace next to it
(Image credit: Neville Johnson)

The best spare room ideas will make the most of an extra bedroom or reception space, turning your space into a home office with the best office chair, an arts and crafts area, or even a chill out zone for the kids to better zone your home. 

So, to inspire your room's makeover, we've put our favorite spare room ideas together here to help you repurpose the space you have, in the most stylish and practical way. Keep scrolling for the most decorative bedroom ideas and functional looks for your spare room.

20 spare room ideas to inspire your space

1. Create a very country, cozy chill out zone

a snug room with gray walls, dark wood floor, a gray armchair, a large woodburning stove and wood

(Image credit: Ikea)

Woodburning stove. Check. Armchair you could get lost in. Check. Dark, moody, sophisticated color scheme. Check. This is a great look for a spare room and provides a perfect secluded spot for anyone who needs to have a breather, after a long day. 

2. Choose a daybed that gives you options

an Ikea sofa/day bed with wooden slats and lots of dark blue bedding and white and blue cushions, against a window, and a check white and black curtain in the corner

(Image credit: Ikea)

Having a bed that can double up as a sofa, or that can actually be stacked is really useful. So you can buy one bed, but then stack a second (and third) on top, so that whenever you need extra sleep or seating space, it's right there, taking up no more space than a single bed.

In the above picture is a daybed, while below it's two Scandi-style singles, and then a sofa, and a day bed. So, whichever way you want to place them, a well selected bed can suit your bedroom design, or spare room design seamlessly.

two Scandi-style stackable bed and sofas with dark black and gray bedding on top, a black and white square curtain, a window, and a red and white square rug on the floor

(Image credit: Ikea)

Oh, and of course, it can become a double...

Ikea Utaker stackable bed made into double bed with gray bedspread, with large window and white linen curtains

(Image credit: Ikea)

3. Revamp a guest bedroom with bright paint

Bedroom with green paneled wall and pink bedding with pops of yellow, with a black and white rug underneath, and lots of framed art on the walls

(Image credit: Katie Lee)

While you may be reticent about going too bold with the bedroom color scheme in your own bedroom, having a spare room is a fantastic opportunity to be more daring with paint color and pattern. Paint a feature wall in a really out there color (something like Farrow and Ball's Vardo would do the trick) in a guest bedroom to make the space sing.

4. Turn a downstairs spare room into a bar lounge

Transform your spare room – particularly if it's downstairs, maybe in a garage conversion – and you could have an intimate cocktail bar in your own home! Pick characterful furniture, add a bar cart or wine rack, and you're ready to impress your guests.

If you can't be as extra as Lisa Dawson and actually build a full on bar in your spare room, check out our pick of the best bar carts and how to style them instead. 

5. Create a home office in your spare room 

Neptune Carter desk, Brompton desk lamp in Antique Brass , City plan print framed on the gray wall, and wooden floor underfoot, with stylish wooden furniture and desk and blue desk chair

(Image credit: Neptune)

Spare bedrooms tend to be on the smaller side, but most will fit a desk and a chair, especially if you opt for a space-saving day bed rather than a full-sized double bed. Add a stylish lamp and you have your own writer's nook, or mini home office.

6. Use it as a sewing room

white spare bedroom with brick feature walls with a sewing desk and essentials in it

(Image credit: Jody Stewart)

Good with the sewing machine? Those rolls of fabric, mannequins and sewing apparatus sure take up a lot of space. With the luxury of a spare room, you can create a craft studio. Mix and match storage units, storage boxes and baskets to create a tidy space.

7. Turn a spare space into a library

a luxurious spare room with a red armchair and rug, and a huge sage green built in bookcase unit with lots of books in it, and a brick covered-up fireplace next to it

(Image credit: Neville Johnson)

If you don't need a dedicated guest bedroom, how about investing in a home library instead? Create a dedicated book storage area with bespoke shelving or freestanding bookcases.

Bespoke library shelving by Neville Johnson is used in this spare room to create a perfect reading space.

8. Repurpose your spare room into a home gym

industrial home gym with a punchbag, a hanging rail with towels and a bag, and a giant ball on the tile floor

(Image credit: Pottery Barn)

Whatever your workout of choice, your spare room is a good place to burn some calories if you build a home gym. Invest in the best home gym equipment, such as a treadmill or punch bag for relieving end of day stress. As Pottery Barn demonstrates here, a home gym needn’t lack style. 

9. Turn your spare room into a playroom

kid's playroom with chalkboard wall and rainbow mural, and a wood and color storage unit, a rug on the white floor, and a wooden small dining set, with table and chairs

(Image credit: Ikea)

If your children are young and the spare room is downstairs, making it into a playroom is a great idea. Swap out the bed for a cheaper sofa bed and put in plenty of toy storage to keep the space neat for your little ones to run wild, but in an organized fashion.

10. Create a homework station in your spare room

a stylish desk space with with white desk and storage unit, a wooden chair, and a blue and white polka dot floor, with black crittall doors to the left

(Image credit: Brintons)

In busy households, a decent craft/homework station is one of the best spare room ideas around. Making it a dedicated spot to store gift wrap, cards and stationery, homework folders and pens. A gift wrapping station alone might sound extravagant, but it won't just come in useful at Christmas – think birthdays and other occasions too! If you aren't sold, then combine it with something more useful (like a homework desk) and it'll be very practical. 

11. Reserve your spare bedroom for dressing

An open door into a library/office/dressing room, featuring an antique bureau and stool, with all-wooden floors, doors and walls

(Image credit: Malcolm Menzies)

If you don’t have the square footage for a dressing table in your bedroom, reserve a space in your spare room to store your beauty essentials – and call it a dressing room. For more dressing room ideas, we have a whole feature to get you inspired. 

Love this room? Go and take a tour of the rest of this gorgeous self-build log cabin for more inspiration.

12. Use the spare room for a walk-in wardrobe

an all-white dressing room, with two white wardrobes, a white dresser, gray floorboards, a plant, and a bench with cushions on it, and a door in the middle

(Image credit: Ikea)

What could be more indulgent than a bespoke walk-in wardrobe? If your own bedroom is severely lacking in storage space, you could create a walk-in wardrobe in the spare bedroom instead. 

13. Go multi-purpose with a sofa bed

comfy sofa bed against window with pink and striped bedding, on top of a purple rug and next to a gold floor lamp

(Image credit: dfs)

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

14. Create a snug in a downstairs room

sleek, white and contemporary woodburning stove in a living space next to a storage unit with wood, papers and folders, against a dark black wall, on a white floor, with a bench to the right with cushions and a throw on it

(Image credit: Contura)

On extra cold days, it has be best to heat one smaller downstairs bedroom than trying (and failing) to keep the whole house warm. Install a woodburning stove – perfect for small, snug room spaces – and curl up with a book or your favorite TV show. 

15. Convert the spare room into a home cinema

a light bright living room with blue sofa and pink and white cushions, and dark coffee table with a tray and flowers on top, and a window seat with cushions, and white shutters on the windows

(Image credit: Simon Whitmore)

Make staying in the new going out with a home cinema room.. All you really need is some good seating – think a sofa and some beanbags (see our pick of the best beanbags) – and a blank wall to project films onto. Plus an obligatory bar cart, or popcorn machine.

16. Create a comfortable retreat

all-white and gray bedroom with white bed linen, and wide open doors onto garden

(Image credit: The White Company)

Create the ultimate escape for your guests – or yourself – by giving your spare room a 5 star hotel-worthy makeover. Quality bedlinen is key. The White Company has everything you could possibly need in this department – their Brompton bed linen is a gorgeous choice.

17. Turn it into a laundry room

galley utility room by Schüller with open cupboards, drawers, a washing machine in an all-white finish

(Image credit: Schüller)

Even an upstairs spare room can be turned into a utility room. And while we might not advise storing food and drink up there, miles from the kitchen – impractical to say the least – it can be really useful as a laundry room. You'll need to look into plumbing costs for a cold water supply at the minimum, and for drainage, but it will mean that dirty washing stays upstairs and gets returned to bedrooms without ever cluttering up the downstairs of your home. 

18. Or turn a spare room into a boot room 

grey toned boot room from neptune, with open shelving full of boots and towels, and a bench with a black dog on it, and gray tiled floor

(Image credit: Neptune)

Having a boot room is one of the most practical spare room ideas, especially if you only have a small space to work with, and if it so happens to be located near your front (or back) door.

Much like the name implies, this will be a place to store shoes, wellies, dog beds, umbrellas, that sort of thing. If you have got the room you could always add a sink and double it up as a utility room.

19. Make your spare room a space for wellbeing

father and daughter do yoga tree pose in loft apartment, in front of a large open shelving unit full of books and records, with large windows to the right

(Image credit: Getty)

Into yoga? Need a quiet space? Why not decorate your spare room in soothing tones (think creams, warm browns, honey, terracotta), and make it into a yoga studio? All you need is a yoga app on your phone, a yoga mat and a decent room temperature.

20. Add an en suite

Small bathroom design with patterned flooring and wooden unit, and a thin black window

(Image credit: Katie Lee)

If you've a spare bedroom that's really got room to spare – excuse the pun – then you could actually consider adding an ensuite. Functional, and likely to add value to your home also. It's a win win situation.