How Much Walking Space Should Be Around Bedroom Furniture?


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

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. 


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

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