The space under the stairs can house your grand design

Under-stairs storage cupboards are often an afterthought when planning home renovations. Under The Stairs, a series of 8 installations, using often-overlooked storage spaces and each imagined by a different interior designer, will be on display only at Grand Designs Live, from 4th – 12th May 2019. Focusing on the increase in the use of unconventional spaces, this competition invited 8 pioneering interior stylists to bring their ideas to life at the show; producing a celebration of unique, individual spaces in the home. From bold colours to fabulous textures, these small spaces aren’t afraid of making a statement and are sure to spark the creativity of every visitor.

Chloe Spillett of Chloe Gets Creative’s under the stairs Kids Clubhouse was named as the overall winner by a panel of judges. Barbara Chandler of the London Evening Standard and one of the judges commented:

“The choice was a very difficult one as we felt each design was so well thought-out, creative and beautifully executed. So many of our visitors have homes with this kind of space available, so this project has been incredibly inspiring for many. We felt that Chloe’s design, rather than trying to disguise the triangular shape of the space, celebrated it! The overall effect was very inviting, fun and not too closed in, making it a great space for kids to play in. This idea is relevant to so many of our visitors who have families, and we felt it was an achievable idea for mums and dads, and grandparents alike!”

Chloe Spillet


Judges for the competition included Kevin McCloud, Barbara Chandler from the London Evening Standard and Jenny Gibbs from the KLC School of Design, who remarked ‘With the increasing trend towards smaller homes every bit of space needs to be used. This is a fun and interesting challenge and I loved seeing how the entrants solved some of the practical problems faced with such a small space and the creative ideas that emerged as a result. Every single entry was full of fantastic ideas that visitors could take away for their own homes.’

This under stairs play area provides the perfect solution for families residing in smaller properties without space for a playroom. The smaller space is perfect for children, aiding their development and fuelling their adventures. Carefully thought-out features such as wall mounted ladder rungs allow children to climb up onto a lookout ledge and read their favourite book, and the area can also be conveniently closed off at the end of the day.

The other finalists on display are:

Amanda Neilson (

Amanda Neilson


Embracing the more ‘traditional’ use of an under-the-stairs space, a downstairs toilet, Amanda Neilson’s deign incorporates elements of design to bring a modern, spacious look to a usually cramped area. Using natural elements and textures, alongside green tones, spliced with bright floral colours and metallic accents, this beautifully natural powder room provides a small sanctuary in the home.

Charlotte England (

Charlotte England


This space encompasses a celebration of natural products, all with low environmental impacts, natural fibres and soft tonal shades create a welcoming environment, ideal for a cosy reading nook, or a snug spare bedroom, when necessary.

Fleur Ward (

Fleur Ward


This space for teenagers or gamers provides the perfect hideaway allowing them to get lost in the experience. A feeling like being in enveloped in an 80’s game. Containing a drawer unit for headphones, equipment etc, and a drinks fridge for refreshments and snacks, comfy seating and retro-inspired Wired For Sound wallpaper from OhhFleur, this is the modern-day treehouse for teens.

Helen Crouch (

Helen Crouch


With a serene verdant wall, a gilded seat forms a beautiful centre piece, contrasting with deep-toned walls, leading up to starry wall lights, this hidden escape features a foot spa and other relaxing features like a cocktail bar and live plants. Relax, unwind & sip a drink while your feet have a dip in a spa.

Kristyna Mcdarby (

Kristyna Mcdarby


Using muted grey and wood tones, with heavily textured materials and fun touches alongside decorative artwork and walling, this modern, spacious and cosy dog house is the perfect retreat for a pampered pooch.

Lynsey Hoskin (

Lynsey Hoskin


Lynsey’s under the stairs space is designed with photography aficionados in mind, providing the perfect space for film developers to practise their craft. This closed off under-the-stairs space is designed with chemical wet and dry areas, while industrial touches add stylish elements to this functional space.

Accanto Interiors (

Accanto Interiors


This room set aims to bring the natural outside world into the home, using sustainable materials and a colour palette of soft and vivid natural tones. Ecodesign and the use of live plants in the space reduces negative impacts on environment, and boosts the health and comfort of building occupants. The use of the space to create a seating area, with storage, accented by wall-hung plants, shows the Accanto Team’s exemplary use of space to serve several functions, as well as being beautifully designed.

You can see all 8 designs on display at Grand Designs Live, at London’s ExCeL, from 4 – 12 May 2019. For more information visit Grand Designs Live –