Creative Ways to Utilize the Space Under Your Stairs

Residential designers in Estes Park recognize that optimizing visual impact and efficiency of any interior requires cleverly using all possible square footage in any living space, including underneath our stairs and staircases. These often underutilized areas are full of untapped potential that most homeowners overlook when creating an interior design layout. Don’t resign yourself to the mindset that the area under your stairs is simply dead, wasted space. Partner with an Estes Park interior designer to conceptualize a beautiful and functional way to maximize how you utilize the square footage beneath your stairways. Some creative options include:

Home Office

Can’t seem to find the right place for your desk and chair? Create a simple work surface using a board attached to the widest wall of the opened up stairway, sliding your favorite work chair and size-appropriate filing unit underneath. On the wall directly under the steps, you can include shorter shelving units to hold office gear such pens, papers, paperclips, and decorative accents that you’ll enjoy looking at every time you make the commute to the home office.


The angular design under most stairways is perfectly suited for a built-in, custom bookcase. Work with your interior designer to outline the right configuration that maximizes space and utility to ensure that all your favorite novels and knick-knacks are prominently displayed and easily accessible. For larger, taller stairwells, you may even be able to create a full-on library nook.


Okay, maybe it’s not quite a full playroom. However, it’s super simple to create a functional and well-equipped play area under your stairways. Paint the walls with brightly colored chalk and magnetic paints to give your budding artist endless opportunities to create. Also, install some cozy carpeting and throw pillows of various sizes to make the area as comfortable as possible for your little one.

Pet Space

Exhausted from continuously relocating your pet’s crate every time you have guests (or your furry family member wants to take a nap)? Use the under-stairs area to give your beloved animal their own private retreat at home. Laydown tile or hardwood flooring to make fur cleanup easy, and place a large cushy bed and various toys in the space to make it welcoming for all of your pets.

Storage Drawers

Tired of cramming all your stuff into precious closet space between seasons, or (worse yet), having items you’d like to use hidden away in inaccessible attic and basement areas? Your stairwell may provide a perfect storage solution. Install customized drawers of various sizes in that space and you’ve instantly increased your storage capacity for things you want out of sight…but still easily accessible. Work with your residential designer to develop a finish on your drawers that complement your surrounding interiors.

Lounge Spot

Wish you had a place to nap, read, meditate, and daydream? Look no further than under your stairs. Collaborate with your professional interior designer to create a concept that essentially creates a “window seat” under the steps – without having an actual window. A cushioned bench and oversized cushions with added storage underneath are all you need to create the perfect spot to lounge, relax, and unwind after a busy day.

Kitchenette/Wet Bar

In need of some added space when entertaining guests? Consider installing an open kitchenette beneath your stairways. Stone counters, lower cabinets, and even a sink can all be placed in this small, but efficient, area. You can also place a beverage, snack, or wine fridge under the counter for extra utility in the space.

Coat Cubby

Want to give everyone in your family their own place for coats, hats, and bookbags, so they don’t all end up on your kitchen table? Create individual coat cubbies for everyone, complete with hooks and lower storage to help them stay organized once they come home.

Laundry Area

Looking for first-floor laundry convenience, but don’t believe you have the space needed? You just may be surprised at how well a washer (and possibly even a dryer) can fit below your stairs. Beyond the appliances, you should also consider a small counter and even cabinetry to make your laundry spot as functional as possible.

Niche Design House specializes in helping homeowners optimize function in living spaces of every size. Contact the team today to schedule a no-risk consultation with one of our professional designers.