Brittany’s room of misfit furniture

Confession time: I have a “room of misfit furniture” in my bachelorette pad.


It’s a third bedroom upstairs, with no purpose and no identity — except for acting as a storage space for a hodgepodge of furniture. I also have a terrible habit in which I throw my suitcase into the room after a long day of traveling. Then, throughout the week, I pick out what I need from the guts of the suitcase instead of just unpacking it all at once. (Eyeroll; I annoyed myself just typing that).

But, the room … it has so much more potential. The morning sunshine spills into it, lighting up my entire upstairs. It’s a good size, about 10 feet by 12 feet. And, it has a decent-sized closet.

So, I need some help deciding the fate of the room because, after 5 years of letting it just sit, I’m realizing I’ve let it turn into a waste of space that acts as a clutter magnet and, to be completely honest, zaps some of my energy every time I look at it.

The History of the ‘Room of Misfit Furniture’

Since I bought my home in 2011, my idea for what the room could potentially be has changed, reflecting my different life chapters and values.

For example, when I was doing a lot of fashion writing five years ago, I dreamed of turning it into a ginormous closet, with shoe racks and jewelry organizers. I’m glad that was a fleeting fantasy because, um, as a full-time freelancer who works from home, I don’t need a room to stash my variety of gray yoga pants these days and I’ve got rid of most bracelets because I can’t stand how they bang against the keyboard.

I’ve also thought about converting the room into my own fitness or yoga room. It’s next to my office, and it’d be great to slip into the room and get in a quick sweat sesh here and there. But, on second thought, I already walk my dog when I’m ready for a break in the day, and I enjoy the social aspect of working out with friends or swimming, so it’s probably best for me to stick with my gym membership. Besides, let’s be honest, I’d probably just use a treadmill to hang dry my yoga pants.

Room No. 3 has housed other dreams. Before I broke it off with an ex-boyfriend of four years, we had talked about wanting a big family, and I imagined the room would one day be a nursery. Then, when I quit my career with the federal government a year ago, and  began travel writing, I started browsing Pinterest for guest bedroom ideas. I imagined the room would be a place that I could  host friends I’d met around the world and who wanted to come and visit Denver for a concert at Red Rocks or for the Great American Beer Festival.

The Problem with Empty Rooms

But still, years later, Room No. 3 sits purpose-less with some stray furniture. And, a lot of it is brown. It’s like a neutral wasteland in this room. And, not to get too deep here, but seeing the room left in this uncommitted stage is an energy suck because it’s a constant reminder that I haven’t followed through with plans or ideas that I have for it.

Ben Soreff, with H2H Organizing, and an expert that we interview frequently here at Closetbox for our blog, has told me before that people often don’t finish what they start when they want to repurpose a room. Then, that room becomes like a “second attic,” a place for items to pile when you can’t make a decision. 

Ah, yes. Room No. 3, you are like a shrine to indecision. And a home to a drawer of scarves I apparently had forgotten about.

Poll 1: What Should the ‘Room of Misfit Furniture’ Become?

I need your help making a decision. What should become of the room? Here are a few of the options I’ve narrowed down. 

  1. A guest bedroom: I have family from Michigan who occasionally come to visit, plus I’ve made friends in all corners of the United States and abroad who I’d love to host at my home. Also, when I travel, I have a dog sitter stay at my home, so I think it would be nice to have a dedicated space for them to stay in.

2. A playroom for my boyfriend’s son: My boyfriend is a full-time dad and has an adorable 2 1/2 year old. We spend our weekends going to the parks, museums and hiking — but with cooler weather around the corner, I know we’ll be spending more time indoors. The poor kid has a tough time finding toys around my house. To his credit, he’s gotten creative with a bird statue and I’m well stocked with bubbles and sidewalk chalk. However, I’d love for him to have a space to play and take a nap in between outdoor weekend adventures.


3. Rent it out on AirBnB or to a student: I live near a university and also next to a stop along the Light Rail public transportation system, which shuttles people from my ‘burb to downtown Denver in less than 10 minutes. I don’t think I could commit to having a roommate year-round, but perhaps it would make sense to get in the short-term rental business and allow the room to make me some extra income. My neighbor already runs an AirBnB rental and has a steady stream of guests, so I would feel a little awkward adding competition to the block.

Give Brittany your advice by clicking here!