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How to Make the Most Out of a Bay Window

How to Make the Most Out of a Bay Window

Credit: Brian Goodman/

Bay window spaces can be awkward to know what to do with; furniture often does not fit easily, and simple placing a statement palm tree in it can often feel like poor use of the space. This piece aims to show you some fun ways to think about your bay window, with some tips to making the most of it, and making your house shine in the process.

Use Bespoke Furnishings

Rather than treating the bay as a token space in the room, and adorning it with a cursory lampshade or houseplant, consider turning the space into a statement. You could do this with a single piece of bespoke furniture, like an armchair which clashes with other furniture in the living space. You could use a wire-frame shelving unit or waist-high rack to store a number of houseplants of different sizes and levels, creating a window herbarium with interesting topography. For an even quirkier approach, considering investing in a hammock and hammock stand with a bold fabric design on it, for window-lounging and statement décor.

Fit a Window Seat

The above ideas add visual appeal to the space, but can only be so functional. You could install a fitted bay window seat, comprising a padded seat situated just below the sill of the bay window, and your choice of storage beneath said seat. This storage could be used for further aesthetic appeal, in the form of accessories, decorations and perhaps the odd succulent, or alternatively used for utility purposes. Cupboards under a bay window seat present a handy place to hide additional blankets or throws, as well as consumable objects like candles and matches. The space could even be used to store books.

Consider French Doors

If your budget is big enough to make larger changes to your bay window, this could be the perfect opportunity to install French doors. If your bay window is ground floor and backs onto a garden space, the conversion of the bay into a form of porch for French doors out into that space would create additional light and air into your living space, and provide you a unique entry point into your garden. If the bay is on the first floor, things get significantly more expensive; the addition of a balcony can have the impact of extending your bay out even further, taking advantage of the vertical space above you and creating more light.

Furnishing a Bathroom Bay

Of course, your bay window might be in a space less amenable to these kinds of furnishings – namely, the bathroom. A fitted window seat could still work here, but upholstery in an essentially wet room could be a bad idea. Instead, make the most of the room’s function; consider installing a stand-alone bath unit in the window, giving you views of outside from the comfort of a luxury bath. A separate shower cubicle in an opposite corner could give you a real sense of space, and allow you to maximise your bay.

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