How to turn that enclosed balcony into a stunning extension of your living area.
It’s no secret that enclosed balconies can sometimes be a bit of a nightmare. Often although they have been enclosed to create more living space, they end up as awkward spaces that don’t quite work.
There are however ways to get around the half-half look that can turn your enclosed balcony a value-add part of your living area.
Windows and window dressings
Enclosed balconies – especially in flats - often face not only great views, but oncoming winds, rain and unfiltered sun. The most important factors in getting the area comfortable are windows and window dressings that work.
The installation of huge sliding windows gives the option and convenience having an open balcony or an enclosed room whenever you want. Louvers (which allow controlled airflow) or other child- and intruder-proof windows are also worth considering if safety and security are concerns.
Window dressings that compliment the prevailing weather are another step towards making the area work. If the sun beats down on your balcony making it unpleasantly hot, invest in blinds or shutters that allow airflow but stop the heat, and add air-conditioning or fans to make the space enjoyable. Similarly if your balcony is usually cold, warm it up with curtains, fabrics, furniture and colours that make the area more comfortable.
Giving it that finished look
Enclosed balconies often retain an exterior kind of feeling that undermines the potential of the space as a living area. Plastering over rough brickwork, painting walls or changing flooring can help create a harmonious flow from indoors to the balcony area.
Once the bigger changes to the balcony have been made, there are many ways to use it.
With the splendid views that many balconies offer, an enclosed balcony can be turned into the perfect dining room for a small flat. With ever changing panoramas depending on the weather and the light, views can create spectacular focal points, and make using the area a real pleasure. If space is restrictive, a dining table can be pushed again the wall seating two or three people for everyday use, and pulled out when numbers require.
The intimate size of many enclosed balconies makes them an ideal space for kicking off shoes and relaxing. Add comfortable sofa, a coffee table, and a well-stocked bookshelf and make it a perfect living room to relax in, to soak up the sun, read, or watching TV. Stick to simple accessories to give the impression of space, and opt for out-of-sight storage tricks for wires to achieve a clean harmonious environment.
Office space is often sought after in modern homes, and an enclosed balcony can be the ideal spot. Attractive colours, ordered shelves and a convenient table can make this space a pleasure to work in. Keep it neat by having enough shelving space and consider converting a cupboard into a book or file shelf that can be closed, so that at the end of the day, most of the office can be stored away – out of sight and mind!
Avoid the clutter of children’s toys by creating a space for them to play – and to store the toys when not in use. Maximise this space by adding a desk or table and shelves where children can do and store schoolwork out of their bedrooms too.
A green area can be hugely rejuvenating. Convert your balcony into a simple conservatory – and enjoy the freshness, and relaxation that comes with it. Choose window treatments that provide the right amount of light and airflow for the plants you’ll be using. Use ladders, shelving and wall fixtures to generate height and create different levels and focal points. And don’t forget a chair or two.