How Much Walking Space Should Be Around Bedroom Furniture?

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The space around furniture is as important to the success of your bedroom design as the furniture itself. Planning for adequate space to move within a room contributes to the comfort, privacy and well-being designers strive for in a bedroom retreat.

Size Matters

Select furniture that is properly scaled for the space. A king-size bed may look appealing in a showroom, but even if it fits into a smaller bedroom, it may appear oversize and out of proportion. Consider the following:

  • Around the bed: A bed needs at least a
    2-foot walkway around its
    perimeter to accommodate arranging the bedding and getting in and out without bumps and bruises. 
  • Best scale: Reducing the bed size from king -- 72-by-82 inches for California king or 78-by-80 inches for Eastern king -- to queen makes a modest-sized room appear more
    spacious.

Other Space Considerations

  • Door to bed: The most common placement choice for a bed is on the wall facing the entrance. Three feet of clearance is essential from the
    doorway to the nearest furniture. 
  • Dresser: At
    least 2 feet of walking space is required in front of a dresser to allow for opening and closing drawers with ease. 
  • Slipper chair: An area in a bedroom as small as 4 square feet accommodates a single small chair. 
  • Work space: Optional furniture pieces
    to include in a bedroom if space is available are a small writing desk and chair. Allow at least 18 inches of space for a chair behind a desk.
  • Armoire: Allow at least 2 feet in front of bookshelves or an armoire for comfort in viewing the contents.
  • Seating area: If you are lucky to have enough room for a seating area, allow 18 inches between soft seating and a coffee table. 

Warning

  • Carefully weed out extra furnishings to avoid clutter and crowding.

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