There is a saying that goes like this. “A happy person is a productive person.”
That is quite true, especially for those who come home to a hard day’s work and enjoy home cooking and a good night’s rest. But if we back track this, who usually cooks and cleans while your child is in school and you’re at work? Why, it is your house helper who maintains the cleanliness of the home and makes sure that there are meals prepared for the household. You might say they are an extended member of your family. As such, they work and live in your home and while it is convenient for both parties that also means that they have mandated needs and benefits.
And one of these benefits is having adequate accommodations and utilities. Fortunately, most hdb homes have small rooms and bathrooms built in close proximity to one another, making this the ideal place to construct and design the perfect room. That being said, here are a few tips and ideas for a small maid’s room design Singaporean designers employ when crafting the most adequate room for those wonderful household helpers.
1. Basic Structure
If you notice, some hdb homes will have more than enough space for a second kitchen and even and toilet and bath next to it. If your second kitchen doesn’t require additional cabinets, why not convert the remaining space into your maid’s room? Traditionally, most maid’s rooms are located next to the kitchen because the first task of the day is to prepare the breakfast. And with the toilet and bath conveniently located, you can actually connect the two rooms to create the much needed room.
If you’re one of the lucky few with a pre-existing maid’s room and bath, then all you need to do is to take note of certain requirements when it comes to making a Singaporean small maid’s room design.
Typically, a maid’s room measures around 2.0mx2.2m or roughly 4.4 sqm. Add the size of the bathroom, usually around 1.8mx2.0m or 3.6 sqm, and you have an adequately sized room for your household helper. Another interesting method is converting the bomb shelter into a maid’s room, in the event you don’t have an allocated room. However, you must make sure that the bomb shelter will have provisions required for a maid’s room. When designing the room, take into consideration the overall size, ventilation for natural air and light and the goal of keeping them comfortable and happy at all costs.
2. Required Provisions
We mentioned earlier about standard provisions and you’re probably wondering what these required provisions are. Like with any room, a maid’s room must have ventilation. Believe it or not, some rooms don’t have windows, which could be a problem health wise. Rooms need windows that can regulate the circulation of clean air and natural light and this principle is very important when making your small maid room design. Singapore designers have employed various methods such as placing vents and even placing a small window so that they can have a view to look at.
Another provision is privacy. Apart from having their own quarters, maids must also feel at ease in their personal space. This is often considered if there is more than 1 household helper employed. Make sure they have their own space to relax in.
Electrical provisions are also important. Especially for lighting and other appliances that will be used such as an electric fan. Make sure the room has enough sockets and conveniently placed so that they can easily plug the necessary appliance they will be using. Make sure it is well installed and uses materials of the best quality.
Finally, sanitation is very important. This is considered when constructing or renovating the toilet and bath. It’s important to use quality fixtures and make sure that you use quality fixtures and that the plumbing is well done.
3. Furniture and Accessories
Now comes the fun part where you can design and style your maid’s room. Just because it’s the maid’s room doesn’t mean you have to skimp out on quality items. As with most rooms, your maid’s room will need an adequate sized bed, linens, a wardrobe and if the space allows it, additional furniture like a desk and chair as well as space to move around.
- COLOR SCHEMES
Like with most rooms, the maid’s room must have a concise and uniformed scheme. As such, when choosing the color palette, take into consideration the size of the room as well as how the occupants will feel. If the room is small, as most maids’ rooms are, go for light colors that will make the room look bigger than it normally is. Light colors can be light neutrals, pastels and even muted tones such as gray and brown. Avoid using bright colors as they will overwhelm and make the room even smaller than ever. A go to palette for rooms is the neutral palette as well as the cool colors and the earth tones.
Choose a bed frame that is decently sized so that your maid will have a restful sleep. More often than not, a single size bed is often used. There are many bed designs you can go for ranging from simple box bed designs to beds with storage either in headboards or bottom portions. There will be instances when even a standard single size bed will not fit your maid’s room. Don’t worry, though. A good idea to try when making a Singaporean small maid’s room design is having the bed custom made to fit the space. There are companies that can custom make beds with built in storage. You can also use a sofa bed that can open out into a bed when needed.
You can get two beds if you have more than one household helper employed. Or you can opt for a bunk bed the space is restricted. Go for bunk beds that are of good quality and reasonably priced. Take note also of the height of the room. You wouldn’t want your maid sleeping so close to the ceiling, right?
Consider getting a good wardrobe. Your household helper will need space to store her clothes and even her personal belongings. A one door wardrobe would usually measure at 600mmx600mmx2100mm, but you can go a bit wider if the space allows it. Go for wardrobe cabinets made entirely out of melamine or laminate wood of the best quality.
When it comes to mattress, get a mattress that is both good for the back and well-priced. Most mattress used in maids’ rooms will be at least 4-6 inches high. Don’t go for mattress that are 2-3 inches high as they will immediately sink into the bed.
- DESK AND CHAIR
Some maids tend to spend their rest time either sleeping or watching something on their phones or TV. But there are some maids who also read or write on their spare time. As such, if the space allows, you can also place a small desk and a chair. That way, when they write or read, they will have a comfortable place to sit and work on. They can also store their important papers and documents there if needed.
Linens are very important as they make for a more comfortable night’s rest. Shop for linens that are of a higher thread count and reasonably priced. There are many stores that provide bed linens in sets and linens that make the room a bit brighter. Avoid bedding sheets that are thin; you would not want your maid to be uncomfortable and shivering at the same time. You can opt for plain sheets and one accent or printed pillow case so as to break the monotony of the room.
Most designers will agree that having a framed artwork makes the room inviting as ever. You can make your maid’s room more comfortable by adding a few artworks on the wall. You can add one painting or even a set of 3 paintings above the headboard or even next to the wall. Consider also what makes them relaxed, so go for paintings of natural landscapes, the ocean, and a few modern views if you like and even subtle abstract art. You can go the extra mile and hang a painting or a framed photo of their favorite place or country. Your household helpers will feel even more appreciated when they enter a room that makes them comfortable and at ease.
Let’s talk lighting fixtures. Most rooms will have that one centralized or general light to rely on, but that doesn’t mean it will be a light bulb. Instead of simply placing an ordinary lightbulb, go for a pin light or even a small ceiling washer. That way, it will still be a room. You can also place a small lamp if ever they need one and as much as possible, provide emergency lights in the event of a blackout.
In conclusion, when designing a small maid’s room design, Singaporean designers must always put themselves in the occupant’s shoes as well as the employers. They must consider the fact that most maids are far from their homes and will feel a bit homesick every now and then. It is important to make them feel like they are part of the family and that they are welcomed while they work. So, have fun creating your maid’s room design and you will find it will be both rewarding for you and your maid.