10 Conservatory Ideas for your home
Adding more living space to a property by building a new conservatory is one of the more cost effective ways to do so. But what uses can you put the extra space to? Not only that, but what about the interior features?
To give you a few things to think about, here are 5 conservatory ideas for using your new room, and 5 ideas for useful internal conservatory features.
5 uses for a new conservatory.
1 DINING AREA / LIVING ROOM:
One of the easiest ways to use the new space, is to locate your dinner table and chairs in the new conservatory. The great natural light during the day will lift your spirits and in the evening you can be dining under the stars.
The great thing about using your conservatory as a dining area, is that you don’t need huge amounts of space. Just enough room to sit everyone comfortably around the table will be fine.
Extending your living room into the conservatory is simply a matter (usually) of rearranging your furniture within the extra space available. On the other hand, you may be looking forward to purchasing some new furniture for the room and now you have the ideal opportunity to go out and get that real big comfy sofa that you’ve always wanted but never had the room for.
2 KITCHEN CONSERVATORY:
Plumbing, electrics and ventilation all need to be considered in detail. You are also likely to need to consider a bigger budget for new cabinets, work surfaces and possibly even new appliances for the room.
Having your kitchen in the conservatory gives you a well-lit open space to enjoy. A kitchen conservatory is not only a great place for cooking, but also serves as a really nice, almost “al-fresco” social hub for family or friends who drop by (everybody ends up chatting in the kitchen!).
3 HOME OFFICE:
With “remote working” becoming an ever increasing part of the workplace, using a conservatory as a home office in cases like this makes perfect sense. You can keep it as simple as just having a single desk, chair and some shelving, or go for a fully fitted bespoke office setup – maybe even somewhere in between, it’s up to you.
Don’t forget that you are going to need an internet connection (or 2) and enough power sockets to run your PC, printer, charge your phones etc.
If you find that it gets a bit bright during the day (can’t see the computer screen because of sun-glare), then vertical or horizontal conservatory blinds are the ideal solution – they can even be fitted overhead.
4 UTILITY ROOM:
A place for the washing machine, dryer, laundry basket & ironing board etc. might not sound a glamorous use for a conservatory. But if you ask someone who has done this, they will probably tell you it was one of the best things they did.
Having a separate space to do the laundry gives you a purpose built area with everything conveniently in one place.
Once again, much like a kitchen conservatory, you will need to consider power, drains & ventilation requirements for the conservatory to cope with the appliances. However, unlike the kitchen conservatory, you don’t need as much space – even a small lean to conservatory will be more than adequate.
5 CHILD PLAY AREA
If you have a young family, then you know that having a space where the kids can play and run-around safely is a blessing.
A conservatory can be an ideal place for a child playroom. With a wide clear area and no furniture in the way, you can fill the room with their favourite toys and let them “get on with it”.
IF you choose a floor covering that cleans easily, then you don’t have to worry about spills or stains.
On a safety note, a conservatory with dwarf walls can be useful here, as the glass will not come down to floor level.
However, apart from the common sense of using safety glass in a child play area, building regulations stipulate that you must use toughened safety glass where it comes within 800 mm of internal floor level.Get Quotes
5 useful internal conservatory features.
To get the most enjoyment out of your new conservatory it needs to be comfortable to use all year long, come rain or shine.
But apart from the insulation qualities of the glazing, what other conservatory ideas are there for keeping your conservatory cool in the hot weather and warm in the cold weather?
1 Conservatory Blinds:
Fitting blinds in your conservatory not only help to regulate temperature, they also increase privacy levels and can stop sunlight from fading your furnishings.
In general, the lighter the colour blinds you fit, the cooler they will keep the conservatory – dark colours absorb heat more readily. Also, if you can fit blinds that have a reflective surface, this will work even better.
Popular types of conservatory blinds:
- Vertical / Horizontal: Probably the most popular and cost effective. You may be able to use 1 blind to cover a few windows at a time as they can cover windows up to 5 metres wide. Easy to operate and to vary the amount of light by simply altering the angle of the blind Louvre.
- Roller: Roller blinds are simple to fit & use. However, when fitted side by side, there is going to be a gap of around 50mm (2 inches) between each roller – bear that in mind.
- Vision blinds: These are a variation on roller blind design. The fabric has alternating opaque & clear horizontal bands fitted so as to have 2 layers. As you operate the blind, the stripes on each layer slide past each other, until only the clear stripes are visible or the opaque stripes are visible. Moving the roller blind varies the amount of light coming in.
(image source: https://www.hudsonblinds.co.uk/)
- Roman Blinds: Fairly similar to a sail in that they unfurl to move up and down vertically. Giving a layered fabric effect to the window area. Roman blinds, in our opinion, give a more pleasing 3-dimensional effect than vertical or horizontal blinds and they also look very good when fitted to the roof area of a conservatory.
2 : Underfloor Heating:
Best fitted during the construction phase, underfloor heating for a conservatory is a very effective and energy efficient way to keep the room warm in cold weather.
Working in one of 2 ways, either via electric heating cables or water pipes, underfloor heating spreads the warmth evenly across the whole room. Helping to eliminate the “cold-feet, hot head” that you can get from more traditional methods – it also eliminates cold spots in the room.
There are some slight drawbacks, in that it takes some time to warm up or cool down the system. It’s not “instant heat” that you can turn off or on.
3 Heating via Radiators:
If your existing hot water central heating system has the extra capacity, then you can fit radiators to the conservatory as your main method of heating the room.
Simple & easy to operate, hot water radiators are a tried & tested solution.
If you think a radiator can get in the way, then you could be in for a surprise. There are many “designer radiators” in the market, some so amazing you could mistake them for a piece of modern art.
- Just take a look at these: https://www.a1radiators.co.uk/hotech-radiators
4 Conservatory Flooring:
The floor of your conservatory can make a big difference in not only the actual temperature, it can also make the room feel more cosy or cool.
A flagstone or tiled floor is going not only going to feel cooler to the touch, it can also give off a cooler feel to the room. Whereas a darker shade of wooden flooring, whether its real wood or laminate, can give the opposite effect.
A good deep pile carpet is wonderful on your bare feet, but you should think about the practicality as well. Carpeted floors are going to be harder work to keep clean and stain much easier.
A shag pile carpet may not be the best idea for a kitchen conservatory or kids playroom, luxury Vinyl tiles may be a better option – warm to the touch and easy to clean as well as hard wearing.
- Some inspiration here: http://www.harveymaria.com/Conservatory-Flooring
It’s also important to pay attention to ventilation for your conservatory, even more so if you are using it as a utility room or kitchen.
There are 3 common solutions to providing air circulation in a conservatory:
- Roof vents. At least one, or maybe two, depending on the size and use of your conservatory will help greatly. Available in manual or electrically operated versions, even weather sensitive vents are in the market (they can tell when it rains & close!).
- Window openers. Having window sections that open is common. But you do have to remember to close and lock them afterwards.
- Window trickle vents can provide 24 hr secure ventilation to your conservatory. On their own they won’t cope with a really sunny day or expel the heat built up from cooking, but they will eliminate general condensation build-up, which is essential in our highly insulated modern homes.
Whatever you want to use your conservatory for and whatever design or style you prefer, let us help you find the most competitive prices.
To find out how much a new conservatory costs for your home, simply send us a few details and we will arrange free quotations from conservatory professionals for you.Get Quotes