Balconies are no longer restricted to showcasing your flower pots and plants. You can utilise the space to spend quality time with your loved ones while taking in some fresh air. You can even host a barbecue party or simply sip on your morning cuppa in your balcony. But as apartments are becoming compact, balconies are also becoming smaller. Today, builders are building standard sizes of 650sq/ft to 850sq/ft apartments. So the challenge for most home buyers is creating seating spaces in compact balconies while also making it look cosy and welcoming.
But one should decide on the seating style depending on how much time they plan to spend in the balcony area, says Akshay Choudhari, interior designer, EDGE Designs Studios. “Most of the time, people spend a lot of money and space creating a seating area but hardly end up spending any time there. I had created such a lovely space for a client of mine but whenever I visit them, I don’t find anyone in the balcony. People just need a fancy balcony to show off but that shouldn’t be the case. Just like every other space in the house, you also need to design the balcony depending on its usage,” says Choudhari.
Sheetal Yanpure, interior designer, Akarshan Furnishing & Interiors, Warje, says that one should choose designs which can also be used as storage. “Because of compact flats, builders avoid providing overhead storage in the bedrooms. So flat owners either build storage spaces or use the balcony as a storage-cum-seating space. So I suggest my clients to create double-usage spaces,” she explains.
She adds that one can go for foldable corner pieces, which offer some storage space. “You can also put cushions on them and make it comfortable for sitting. You can remove them when not in use. This way you can have enough space to move around,” she adds.
She says that another option is pouffe stools which can also be used as storage spaces. Because they have wheels, you can move them across the house, wherever you require them.” To this Choudhari adds, “Pouffe stools are a great option these days and a lot of people are opting for it because they are handy and not very expensive.”
Yanpure says that these days cane furniture also comes in compact designs keeping in mind smaller apartments.
Choudhari says that foldable furniture is also a feasible option for those who want a fancy balcony. “There are shelf seating areas which are attached to the walls. You can further enhance the design with cushions and make them look comfortable,” he says.
He adds that parapet walls can also be turned into a seating area. “The grills we put in the exterior of the balcony can be used differently to turn into a seating area. These spaces are pretty safe as they take all safety measures into account,” he says.