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9 Keys To Success When Designing Your Granny Annexe Interior

Researching and planning a granny annexe for a lifestyle choice has all the decision making processes of buying and planning a new home or apartment mixed with the anticipation of self-building a real “little home” at the the bottom of the garden.

It’s irresistible to most people who can see all the financial benefits of being able to downsize, free up equity, potentially save on inheritance tax or long term care costs or simply get a strong-hold on affordable home ownership that is tailor-made for you & your exact needs.

The location is frequently determined by the size of the garden and in most cases families who build annexes are living within a 10 to 20 minute drive from each other and already know and like the area they are living in.

So once all family members have agreed that an annexe offers the best value for money solution for everyone concerned it’s time to get excited about planning the floor plan and then the interior design and style.

Annexes should be one of the most rewarding and enjoyable things you could ever do, especially if you love interior design and the thought of being able to literally design your own home from the ground up, albeit on a smaller scale and within the realms of what your Local Planning Authority will permit, it’s not something that many people ever get to do.

So if you are in the process of researching and planning an annexe for your back garden, here are our 9 keys to success when it comes to putting together a successful granny annexe interior. (even if it isn’t for granny) 


1. Keep The Space Open By Making 80% Of Your Colours Neutral

"granny annexe interior"

Interior designers will usually recommend that 80% of your colour scheme be neutral. And of course neutral does NOT have to be beige. Dulux have some very inspiring neutral colours to choose from and they do a great job of helping you select some toning and accent colours to go with them.

Ideally you want to create an open plan living space that is welcoming, relaxing and peaceful very much like a holiday lodge makes you feel.

And it should also reflect your personal style and tastes because everything can be custom made within the space to match your exact needs and wish-list, size and design permitting of course.

We are always on hand to offer assistance when it comes to granny annexe interior design but we find most of our customers enjoy that part the most!


2. Research And Find Appropriate Sized Furniture

"granny annexe interior design tips"

The golden rule with furniture is measure twice order once to make sure the new furniture fits in the space.

There's plenty of room designing software available today if you prefer to dabble on your iPad or computer or just plan everything out "old-school-style" with graph paper and paper cut-outs of furniture items so that you can rearrange the rooms and avoid any costly mistakes such as buying a sofa that isn't size appropriate.

"granny annexe interior design tips"

IKEA do some fantastic slimline storage units like the HEMNES for your hallway or porch and they come to the rescue again in your living space with some great storage units, media units and bookshelves (like the BRUSALI)

Making a feature storage wall behind a small L-shaped sofa (as seen above) is one of the best ways to maximise your annexe living space for extra storage and style.


3. Make Items Of Furniture Dual Function If Possible

"granny annexe interior design tips"

When it comes to adding style and storage to your annexe think a LOT about dual purpose furniture like the Apothecary Drawer unit pictured above. Not only does it look great as a slimline console table for a table lamp and some accessories, it's superb storage is versatile enough to cater for a whole range of uses to keep everything spic and span and organized.

Annexe living usually means downsizing to a smaller space and so the dreaded de-cluttering process of sifting and sorting through everything you have accumulated is part of the process.

What we find is that once that part of the process is complete, most people choose to create a minimal look to their annexe to maintain it's new home look and feel.

Once you have your granny annexe interior planned out, it's time to make use of every available space using some of the brilliant storage solutions we have available today.


4. Use Every Possible Vertical Space Creatively

"granny annexe interior design tips"

 

Annexes have a cosy unique feel to them that makes the perfect back drop for creating useful and stylish vertical spaces.

For great interior design inspiration for your annexe, visit your nearest new build show apartments and you'll see exactly how create a flow throughout your annexe that is both practical and pretty.

By using the space available vertically, you'll keep that lovely open plan living space feel but also add interest at eye level to the room where you can display some of your favourite photos and accessories.


5. With Drawer Units Go Up In Number To Add Storage Without Losing Floor Space

A visit to IKEA is well worthwhile if you are looking to downsize to annexe living as they have firmly established themselves as our most trusted storage solution experts. 

When it comes to saving floor space in an annexe, think about more drawers going up in number for added storage without losing any of the floor space.

For example a 6 drawer unit in a bedroom will provide twice the storage of a 3 drawer unit without taking up any more space.

IKEA have produced a range called ALEX which is a very versatile range of drawer units suitable for every home or annexe, big or small.

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6. Use Large Area Rugs For Comfort, Texture And Colour

Successful open plan living spaces work well when you create "zones" with rugs, colours and textures.

With a background of neutral colours in this example and accent colours of plums and aubergines the whole look is pulled together by picking up the rug colour in the scatter cushions and adding a throw to the sofa for texture.

The wall units add height and interest to this lovely living area which is cosy, warm and practical too.


7. Get Creative With Your Storage

"granny annexe interior design tips"

"granny annexe interior design tips"

Once you have your granny annexe interior planned out, it's time to make use of every available space using some of the brilliant storage solutions we have available today.

There has never been such a wide range of affordable storage containers and organisation ideas, containers, inserts, labels and "solutions" than there are today.

Try stores like Dunelm, The Range, Primark Home, Next Home & John Lewis if you are a High Street fan or head over to Amazon or Ebay if you prefer to shop online.

Making annexe living successful means making use of every available space and that includes inside your cupboards & drawers as well as outside.


8. Create Canvas Art From Your Favourite Family Photos 

"granny annexe interior design tips"

Annexe living is all about family. 

We love that we help bring families back together with annexe living.

It's a total win / win / win.

One of the modern ways to celebrate your special memories is by turning some of your favourite photos into canvas art and making a feature wall of them in your annexe.

Not only will they be a great talking point when your friends pop in for a cup of tea, but you will always be surrounded by all your wonderful memories.


9. Use Mirrors, Lighting & Accessories To Complete The Look

"granny annexe interior design tips"

One of the biggest choices you will have to make when it comes to annexe living is:-

Do I want to surround myself with the things I love or do I want to have a fresh start and buy new.

With all our Signature Annexes we will be taking care of the foundations, building, electrics, plumbing and kitchen cabinets and appliances for you. We'll even be decorating the walls & ceilings so you have a new home look and feel to your annexe when you move in.

That leaves you with preparing the new space with soft furnishings and accessories (the fun part for many of us) to complete the look.

We highly recommend you pay a visit to your nearest new build apartment show home for some ideas on how to pull the look together if you are buying everything new.

Show home dressing is an art in itself and the perfect inspiration for your new granny annexe interior.


Summary

  1. Create a backdrop of around 80% neutral colours for successful annexe interior design. Add one or two accent colours (which you can always change in the future).
  2. Pay a visit to IKEA for the latest storage solutions and look for multiple drawer units and shelving units for your new annexe. 
  3. Make use of every available space inside and out with clever interior storage solutions, you'll find annexe living less stressful and easier to have a place for everything & everything in it's place.
  4.  Use our Contact Us Page to email us with your ideal annexe plan & we'll be happy to advise you on the best way to get started.

To your self-building success!

 

 

 

 

 

Pete Cossie, Contemporary Log Living UK

P.S. If you made it this far, why not download a copy of our Ultimate Guide To Building An Annexe In Your Back Garden? It's An Easy Read!

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