Each week my “Taking the Mystery out” column will feature design conundrums that will all have trouble with. If you guys have any in particular that you want me to cover off do let me know. This week we’re are nailing how to make open plan rooms, or super sized rooms work. Forget cold, empty, a bit disconnected even and instead lets make them squishy, intriguing and tantalising!

I wanted to show you one of the coolest large spaces around at least I think so. Check out the slideshow above belonging to Kate & Andy Spade. It’s playful, colourful and super friendly. What’s more for such a large space it feels incredibly intimate. Walk in here and it automatically feels deeply personal, a  home that feels endearing as opposed to overly designed.

There are lots of tricks you’ll need to pull out of the hat when it comes to cosying up big rooms. Here are just a few!

Don’t leave walls bare

Artwork cosies up a space especially if it’s all jammed together with no hierarchy in the display, like the Spades. Kids drawings hang out next to expensive gallery finds. Adore!

Add a playful dose of colour

Shots of playful hues like red, yellow, blue tantalize the eye and make the space feel more intriguing. If nothing shouts out then spaces can feel rather dull.

Add more than one focal point

Boy I say this a lot but its demoed here in the slide show really well.  If you have lots of focal points in a room your senses are automatically engaged and excited, way more so then if you just have one. Believe me, its the simplest game changing trick you can do. Oh and another thing don’t plop all the statement worthy, focal pointy stuff down one end, even if you don’t use the other end as much.  It needs  to balance throughout the room in order for it to feel cohesive.

Supersize Things

Plants, paintings, lighting – go big! It will make you’re space feel way more magical and less cavernous!

Add nooks

Create lots and lots of little conversational nooks. Like Kate and Andy Spade have done in their pad. Check out the window seat, impromptu chairs scattered around the place as well as the main conversational area!

Soften things up

Soften large floor spaces up with rugs, plop cushions onto chairs and sofas and skim throws across sofa arms, it will add a layer of squishy contentment.

Go squishy

Talking of squishy add pieces of furniture that scream comfort and shout out for some serious  after dinner lounging after a large helping of pud. Comfortable, loungy furnishings will make your space feel casual and more relaxed.

Don’t be practical

My most favourite tip as I’m so not practical. Put occasional chairs, occasional side tables everywhere and anywhere. Any surplus area, plonk something right there as it adds those all-important layers.

Easy when you know how no?