From the Staging Expert:
Multi-Use Spaces


A large number of ASH’s staging projects are done in cities, which means we have to be adept at designing for relatively small homes. For these projects, it’s critical to show potential buyers or renters the multiple ways that a single room can be inhabited. This need has lead to the phenomenon of the “slash” room: “living/dining,” “guest bedroom/home office,” “media room/library,” to name a few examples of these hybrid spaces. For the smallest apartments—or “efficient” apartments as they’re now known in the real estate industry—we’ve even devised a “kitchen/bedroom” combination.

It’s critical to show potential buyers or renters the multiple ways that a single room can be inhabited.

The most common and important “slash room” is the living/dining room. If someone is looking at a 600 square foot one-bedroom apartment, for example, it’s imperative to show them how they can have both a comfortable living room replete with a sofa, arm chairs, and an ottoman or two, as well as a dining room with seating for six, all at the same time. Given the premium they’re usually paying to call that space home, it’s a fair expectation.

The second most common “slash room” is the guest bedroom/home office. You’ll find these most often in two-bedroom apartments, in the smaller of the two bedrooms. We generally like to install a full size bed or daybed, as well as a substantial desk with drawers, and then add from there, depending on the room’s shape and scale. Wall-mounted bookcases, a sumptuous reading chair, carefully positioned side tables and task lamps can all complete the picture. With this approach, the home can appeal to the widest possible audience and, in turn, generate the maximum return on investment for our clients.

Slightly more upscale is the media room/library, a personal favorite of mine. These can often be found in top-of-the-market pre-war (or pre-war-inspired) homes that already have built-in shelving. While it’s undoubtedly nice to have your own library, if that’s the only other living area aside from your formal living room, it makes sense to also utilize it as a space where you can shut the door and watch television or play music. Though its uses are conflicting—reading and distraction—the media room/library is, for most people, a very desirable space nonetheless.

The combinations of “slash rooms” are virtually endless, but the goal always remains the same; We want people touring our projects to see potential where it previously was not. While that third bedroom might be labeled as simply “Bedroom 3” on a floor plan, it can be so much more than just that.