How to Measure and dimension your room if you are decorating

  1. Draw out on graph paper the arial plan of the room. Graph paper will help keep your lines straight!  You will locate any doors or windows by leaving spaces on the appropriate walls.  See Fig.  1. It will also help us for furniture placement if you show the swing of any doors in the room.   See Fig. 2a.  For windows you will draw a double line in the space as in Fig. 2b.  

  2. Now we will need some measurements on your plan view.  Start with one wall:  from one inside corner measure to the first door or window opening. Fig. 3a. If you are measuring to the window or door opening you will measure to the inside of the opening not the outside of the trim.  Then you will measure the width of the opening. See Fig. 3b.   Continue on until you finish that wall.  See Fig. 3c. If there are no openings on that wall then you will measure to the next corner.  Fig. 3d.  Finally, you will do the same on all the walls.  Please keep in mind if there are any built-ins in the room that are staying you will locate them in this same manner.

  3. Next Step is to provide information for each wall.  These will be called your elevations.  Here you will block out each wall.  You will do four different sketches representing each wall.   Place any windows or doors on the appropriate walls.  On these elevations the information that is important to us will be the ceiling heights and the heights of doors & windows. 

    • For the windows we will need to know the height from the floor to the top of the window sill, (Fig. 4a) and the height of the window itself from the sill to the top of the inside of the window,(Fig. 4b) and the remainder of the space to the ceiling. You will do the same for any doors in the room.  Also, if there are any bulkheads or slopes in the ceiling this is where you will show us and give us their measurements.  See Fig 4c.

    • To measure the doors, we need to know the dimension from the floor to the top of the inside of the casing. Fig. 5a. The width inside the door casing will also be helpful. Fig. 5b

  4. Since we have all of the dimensions to the openings of your doors and windows we will also need to have the dimensions of the trim in your room. This means the baseboard, the trim around the doors and windows, the window sill, and your crown mouldings. See Fig. 6

  5. Lastly, it would be very helpful to us to know where your light switches and electrical outlets are located in the room. Again, it is easiest to show this information on the elevations. The way to measure those is to start measuring from the closest wall and go to the center of the plate. For both it is also helpful to have the heights they are located. Fig. 7a & 7b

  6. Once you have made it through all of these steps, your plan should look like Fig. 8, and your lovely elevations will look like Fig. 9. Good job!