Use templates to help arrange furniture

layitout.pngI spotted a review of a nifty sounding product over at the Cool Tools blog. Lay-It-Out sells lifesize furniture templates which you can place on the floor of your new home to help you visualise where furniture should go.

The templates are made of paper and come in "average" sizes which you trim to your exact specifications (they show measurements in inches and centimetres, which is nice for us metric-types).

Speaking as someone who has moved house and rearranged furniture far too often, this sounds like a nice way of simplifying a process which would otherwise involves modelling software (if you're a geek) or graph paper if you're less technically inclined. It also means you get to visualise how it looks in the room, rather than on a piece of paper or computer screen.

They sell a "whole house" kit for $US40, or individual rooms. I note that the templates don't seem to take wardrobe doors and the like into account - so you'd need to factor that into your room planning as well.

So how do you solve the problem of arranging furniture in a new house? Leave tips in comments please!

Lay-it-Out [via Cool Tools]


    Ikea has some 3D room planning software, for office, kitchen and bedroom. You just pick Ikea products that are close enough to the size of the furniture you have and drag them around the plan, then when you are happy you can get a 3D view to spin around and look for any obvious issues. We used the office one to design the new IT area at work, quick and easy.

    What I do is get two sheets of grid paper, and draw the room to scale on one piece of paper. I then draw scale outlines of furniture on the other, then cut them out. Then I can arrange the scale furniture on top of the scale drawing of my room. It works remarkably well, and costs almost nothing.

    I've heard of this technique a few times, both online and on home-buying TV programmes. Rather than spending $40 on fancy pieces of paper you could opt for the cheaper option of going to your local art supply shop and buying some cheap large paper and cutting some rough rectangles for your furniture.

    Afterall, you have to 'trim' these expensive templates to fit, so why not just make your own from scratch for less money?

    Way too much work, people!

    An easier way is to map the room and furniture in Excel: Resize the columns and rows so your page resembles graph paper, map out the room with lines & borders, and then create templates of the furniture using draw shapes. The furniture can be moved, coloured and rotated at will.

    That way you can do exactly the same as the above, but geekstyle, with the only physical effort being measuring the room & furniture.

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