(Designer: Maureen Footer)

Definition: GARRET ROOMS

That space above the kitchen or over the garage can become a valuable extra room. Do you need a home office, guest room or place to stick the teenager? Explore the possibility of using the garret!

Europeans commonly reclaim and renovate them for residential spaces as they have numerous ancient buildings in their city centers. They're actually very desirable in Paris and Brussels as they always will have patina and charm - as opposed to a modern cement high-rise.  But even in suburban and rural areas these quirky 'garret' spaces can be the coziest place in your home! Personally, I have great memories of sleeping in garret rooms; you can hear the rain on the roof and their close-in ceilings make the room feel especially intimate.  

Check this out, and think about what space you're currently wasting by storing those nasty-ass Christmas decorations and your kids old out-of-date clothes....


This English 'split timber' garret has been converted into an amazing master bedroom. The 'limed' beams and white painted plaster make it cheery and bright as opposed to a dark and dreary attic space - which is what we'd expect.

The high ceilings and skylights make this room a wonderful extra bedroom. It's large enough to have separate sitting and sleeping areas. The new, clean-lined paneling on the ceiling makes this space feel sophisticated and library-like.

(Source: Farmhouse in Provence)
This rustic barn has an open bedroom-bath plan and is used as a guest suite over the homeowners barn.  The exposed older timbers offer unparalleled tones and warmth to this space.

(Designer: Erin Martin)
A space on the second floor of a barn is used for the occasional party and the children's party (420) room.

This snappy suite above the kitchen is more than welcoming for the guests at this home.

Ohhh La La baby...
Ain't no where but Paris that someone would have a bathroom as hot as this in a garret!

This Parisian garret apartment with wonderful high ceilings keeps the structural beams and the old rough-timber floors exposed   which creates this amazingly open and modern feel. The juxtaposition of fine moderne furnishings and the rough textures of the space are just plain chic!


Consider what is going to happen in that low-ceilinged room; sleeping or lounging? Then lower ceilings are perfectly acceptable.


(Designer: Twanette Tharp)
Horizontally installed 1" x 6" stock pine material (cheap!) will make great walls in any beach house or cottage as it looks authentic.

(Source: Canadian Home & Garden)
This unfinished room in a summer cottages attic is made groovy by whitewashing the walls and ceiling and adding brightly colored accessories which all have the common color of red, which ties the accessories together.

(Source: Coastal Living)
Another, unfinished garret is painted all white and has very 'primitive' furnishings, rag rugs, etc.  The mosquito netting creates the feeling of a canopy bed - but in an appropriately casual way.


(Designer: Ted Cleveland)
The plank walls and ceiling of this room have been painted cream-white, which looks great with the antiques and old-fashioned textiles - like the bed quilts and toile curtains.

(Designer: Joe Minton)
This swanky high-tone bedroom with its Zebra wallpaper and beige paisley cotton accents adds amazing elegance to an otherwise modest space.

(Architects: Ferguson and Shamamian)
This schmancy bedroom in Nantucket is in a new home which was designed to feel like an old house - charming and old-fashioned.

(Designer: Erin Martin Design)
How cool is this Man-Cave tucked into the garret a modern home? 

(Source: Coastal Living)
Everyone needs more space at the beach as your frenemy's are always calling for free room and board - well, turn that attic space into a wonderful guest room which will keep unwanted guests from underfoot.

(Designer: Phoebe Howard)
This awesome ski-lodge bedroom utilizes what is traditionally wasted space.

(Designer: Jackye Lanham)
I think this is the prettiest room in the missive! Nothing is precious or too fine, it's casual and well-designed. The bedside tables are old up-ended trunks; the closets have fabric curtains instead of doors - which is brilliant as the hallway is tight and a swinging door would be an obstacle.

(Designer: Carrier & Co.)
Above the kitchen - this pretty bedroom with its horizontal wainscoting and random width floors is the perfect respite for guests decorated with antiques.

(Designer: Anne Miller)
Often homes will have what's called a 'bonus room' which basically means that as the house was being finished they realized there was space for another room over a garage or other room. These can be turned into beautiful, usable spaces.


(Designer: Patrick Printy)
During the renovations of barns, older homes and cottages many spaces are often over-renovated and their patina and time-worn charm is lost. Here is a wonderful garret which uses the rustic background that only time can provide.

(Designer: Marie Olsson-Nylander)
This gi-normous loft in Stockholm is bright and cheerful thanks to numerous skylights and lots of white. The pops of color against the white make it a happy space for the twenty-hour nights of the Swedish winters!

(Designer: Marie Olsson-Nylander)
The entire gable of this house was removed and replaced with a glass wall which makes this room all about the view.

(Source: Unknown)
A small garret apartment in Germany has utilized white and whitewashed wood to keep the space light.   Smaller, less bulky pieces of furniture and built-ins make it appear more spacious.

(Source: Unknown)
I love this private garret room, it's an ad-hoc meditation room, guest room, or guitar practice room.

(Source: Unknown)
This big McMansion has 20 other rooms, but no where to use as 'rumpus' room so they converted their huge-ass attic space into a billiards, TV and playroom for the entire family.

(Source: Sweden)
How awesome is this charming little space for reading the paper, teatime and doing mommy stuff???

Got books?


Tired of retrieving your clothes from different closets all over the house? Mamma needs a big-ass closet to keep her cashmore from gittin' all jammed up.  You sure you can't push out over that porch into that wasted attic space?

(Source: Metropolitan Home)
A small part of this garret was made into a home office. The built-ins are space-efficient and make everything convenient.

(Source: Marie Claire Maison)
These two home offices utilize space which was previously used for storing junk. Now, one flight of steps and you're at work!

Need an extra bath? Whats over that bay window or front porch - can it be your new bathroom?

(Architects: Alisber-Parker)
This uber sexy bathroom utilizes a previously unused attic. Who knew it could be so useful and 'finished' looking??

(Source: Coastal Living)
This guest suite over an existing garage in Martha's Vinyard is the perfect alternative to building an expensive addition to the main house. Guests and hosts feel greater privacy in this situation.


This is a 'shed dormer' shown from outside.

This is a 'shed dormer' shown from inside.

This is a full-width 'shed dormer' which creates a 'Dutch-Colonial' style home.

This is a full 'gable-end' window shown from the outside

This is a full gable-end window shown from inside.

You can do it, I'm here to help!