Interior design

Circulation is the lifeblood of your home’s atmosphere

How the design of your home actually works on a daily living basis is a crucial aspect of successful domestic design. It’s worth giving yourself the space and time to think it through, with drawings and route maps, to pave the way to a relaxed atmosphere and a safe environment.

Articles - 23 August 2016

Human beings naturally take the easiest route between A and B; usually, this means the shortest. You need to allow for this instinctive behavior to create a home that functions harmoniously. Think of stores where the route for foot-traffic is indicated by a different color or quality of flooring; we can take a tip from their methods by understanding the difference between travel routes and activity spaces – and plan to keep them separate. To get the picture, create a living space room planner by working on a scale plan of your floor space. Draw dots at all intersections like doorways and stair entrances. Now connect all the dots by the shortest available route. If any lines (showing traffic) intersect areas which are for activities, like living room chat space, re-think your plan. Space divider ideas can help to re-route traffic and keep a calm atmosphere for relaxing spaces. Circulation 2

More than just a calm atmosphere is at stake; circulation is a major safety issue. In your kitchen plan, join the dots between the range, refrigerator, and sink. This kitchen triangle is sacrosanct, and a traffic path crossing it can cause accidents. Mark your plan with all appliances with their doors open. Do they collide? Does an open oven door create a hazard for someone entering the room? Likewise, in the master bedroom, mark the closet door and bathroom door. Does one create a roadblock for the other? If your priority is maximizing space in a small bedroom, this part of planning can be the most important. Home circulation is a key area where visualization tools can make all the difference. Make use of 3D home design free software from Homebyme to try out your ideas; the site acts as a helpful community for people to exchange ideas, too!

5 planning tips for harmonious and hazard-free circulation in your home:

1 . Plan travel routes

Your home is made up of travel routes and destinations. Understanding the difference is key to planning circulation flows which do not cause irritation or disruption by crossing one with the other.

2 . Join the dots

Use a visualizing tool to mark circulation flow, and ensure that routes do not intersect a destination like an office area or living room space. If they do, use room dividers or change the furniture to re-route traffic.

3 . The kitchen triangle

The crucial kitchen triangle between range, refrigerator, and sink should be a restricted area for foot traffic. Try to make sure the shortest route between the entrance door and bar stools or dining area does not cross the triangle.

4 . Safety first

There’s more to kitchen safety than avoiding collisions. Use your plan to look at appliances with their doors open: check if these intrude into traffic flow or create a hazard such as an oven door too close to an entrance.

5 . Use visualization tools

You could do it the old-fashioned way, with scale plans and drawings, but for more flexibility and helpful advice from the online community, use a 3D visualizing and planning tool to keep that traffic flowing!

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