Tips for Designing Your Studio Apartment - Inside Interior Crowd

Tips for Designing Your Studio Apartment

by Taylor Duvall for InteriorCrowd
October 5, 2015

Living in a studio apartment is not always as quaint and dreamy as TV shows make it out to be. It is hard to have a serious lack of doors, closets, and moving around space in your home.   You start missing things like the ability to walk into another room or to cook dinner without looking at your unmade bed. It can be hard enough when one person is living in a studio, but add another and everything starts feeling like a major squeeze.

Sometimes a studio apartment is the choice we have or maybe it’s in the most ideal location even if the size isn’t perfect. It is always the best idea to make the most of it and find a way to enjoy your tiny space. After all, with the surge of tiny homes, small spaces are super trendy right now. A designer can help make your small home more comfortable by helping you arrange your belongings to maximize space and by showing you where to save on space and what furniture is worth taking up room. Head to InteriorCrowd to get insights from our designers, or read on for a few ways to make your little home seem bigger and more functional!

Make Little “Room” Stations

When you are working with tiny square footage, it is essential to set apart areas as your new “room” stations. Your kitchen and bathroom will be stationary and out of your control, but be creative and find where your other living areas begin and end.   It is better for your sanity and your design to organize your apartment by even the tiniest sections.

Maybe you have a small corner that can become your living room. Place a great reading chair or two, a small end table, and lamp in that corner. If there is a TV in your studio, make sure you can see it from this living room area. Then find a space for your desk. This will be your new office.

Find Designated Storage

Wall Mounted Shelf | CB2

If you do not have a specific spot to store each item you own, your belongings will soon overtake you! There is something about a small space that makes clutter seem that much more obvious. Stay proactive and find unique ways to store your things.

You probably won’t have much footprint space available with all your other necessary furniture, so utilize wall space for shelving.  And continually be conscious about putting your items where they belong.  Having a clear floor, table, and counters will instantly make your apartment feel bigger.

Become an Organized Minimalist

Once you have brought in all the necessary storage, remember it is easier to have fewer things organized well than it is to find a spot for lots of things you will never need. Living in a studio apartment is a great incentive to do a massive “stuff purge.”

Once you have given away or sold everything you do not need or love, you can better organize what’s left. There is no need to waste precious space on that muffin tin your mother-in-law gave you that you will never use.

Find Pretty “Ugly” Things

Dish Rack | CB2
Dish Rack | CB2

Chances are, you won’t be able to hide all those unsightly items – like cleaning supplies, appliances, tools, etc. – in the same way you would if you had a home with more closets, cabinets, or pantries. Since you will be living with these items in plain sight, it is a good idea to find the prettiest versions available.

This does not mean you have to break the bank, but it does mean being intentional and ensuring that you will like what you see when you come home after a long day at work.  Find the nice broom and the nice trashcan.  This gold dish rack from CB2 is a great example.  Drying dishes can be an eye-sore, but this rack helps make it look stylish (plus you can hang it up!).

 Stick with Simple patterns

Simplicity can keep you sane in a studio apartment. Bold really can beautiful, but bold can start feeling totally overwhelming when the square footage is low.  The last thing you ever want to do is make a small space seem more cluttered than it is.

Choose simple patterns and calm, neutral colors for paint, furniture, window treatments, and bedding. Then you can pick out one or two pops of color, maybe in a piece of art, a really great lamp, or a throw pillow.

Choose Furniture Wisely

Bistro Table | West Elm
Bistro Table | West Elm

The last thing you want is any oversized furniture taking up more floor space than necessary. Keep everything as slim as possible.  This bistro table from West Elm shows you need not sacrifice style with small furniture.

Choose the smallest bed size you (and your partner) need.   Have a small dining table and remind your friends and family that you would love for you all to get together at a restaurant down the street. Use tall and thin bookshelves over large, chunky ones.

Hire a Designer

You may be thinking, “I can only afford a studio apartment, why would I pay for a designer?” You may be surprised that not all designers charge astronomical prices that only the richest can afford.   People of all different income levels can utilize the talents of a designer.

When you invest in a designer, he or she will help you create even the tiniest apartment space in such a way that it feels bigger than it is. You will want ultimate efficiency in a studio, and experts can offer a helping hand with that. Our designers at InteriorCrowd love a challenge – big or small – and will be ready to take on any size space you’ve got for them and turn it into your dream home. 

A studio apartment may be small, but it doesn’t always have to feel so small. It will take some creativity, but being creative is exactly why it is so fun to design and decorate your space.

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Taylor Duvall for InteriorCrowd

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