They may not have sweeping staircases or grand hallways (or any staircases or hallways at all for that matter) but what these studio apartments lack in space they make up for with lashings of style.
Despite being just about big enough to swing a (very small) cat, these one-room apartments, have been beautifully designed to make the best of their assets.
The apartments, situated in London, LA, Vancouver, Tennessee and New York, have all been picked by design website Houzz for their stand-out design.
These one-room apartments (including this Manhattan studio, pictured) have been beautifully designed to make the best of their assets
This 350 sq. ft studio in Queens, New York, was designed by Jeanie Engelbach of design studio Apartment Jeanie, who broke the rules and used striking colors in the small space to magnificent effect
When the sleeping and living areas can easily merge to one, Jeanie advises using paint, wallpaper, and color to designate distinct areas (pictured: Queens, New York, studio apartment)
‘Dark colors in the bedroom are conducive to sleep and surprisingly made the room feel much larger,’ says Jeanie of the Queens apartment
The inspiring spaces have all been cleverly planned to amalgamate sleeping, living and eating areas into one small area.
So what tricks to the architects behind these impressive project have up their sleeves in making the best of what you’ve got in the square footage department?
Interior designer Jeanie Engelbach of Apartment Jeanie, who designed this 350 sq ft studio in Queens, New York, tells the MailOnline: ‘Make sure every piece of furniture can serve multiple purposes.’
‘A coffee table that can be additional seating, shelves on piano hinges that can be flush again the wall if entertaining, trays that hang on walls as artwork when not in service,’ she explains.
‘Always look up for storage potential,’ she adds. ‘The minuscule loo in this apartment only had a modest medicine cabinet, so I re-purposed one of the ready-made shelves left by the previous tenant and installed it inside the bathroom above the door for towels & loo rolls.’
The apartment has a door-less bedroom, efficiency kitchen, and small lavatory and is full of vibrancy and quirky touches, like the tray (left) which doubles as wall art to save on storage (pictured: Queens, New York, studio apartment)
‘We had to work within strong limitations which is why color and pattern were essential to creating distinctive areas,’ explains Jeanie. Pictured left the tiny lavatory, and right, a pinboard in the living area (pictured: Queens, New York, studio apartment)
The apartment, a rental in the East Village neighborhood of NYC has a door-less bedroom, efficiency kitchen, and small lavatory.
‘It had a lot of architectural challenges, like a giant cut-out between the living and bedroom, a doorless bedroom, a random cabinet installed in an alcove and a mish-mash of ready-made shelves all over the apartment.
‘We had to work within those limitations which is why color and pattern were essential to creating distinctive areas.’
Any other tricks to make the best use of the space? ‘Always integrate necessities into the design,’ she says.
Jeanie advises: ‘Hang artwork in tight clusters opposes to spreading throughout the space. it gives the impression of an intentional salon or gallery wall and draws the eye to a specific area (illustrated left). Also, a series of shallow shelves can add storage in what would usually be dead space (illustrated right)’ (pictured: Queens, New York, studio apartment)
‘The kitchen doesn’t have adequate cabinets so I had two MDF shelves made which I covered in bright oilcloth and created open shelving for service and stemware.
‘The plates, bowls and serving pieces compliment the wall color and work with the interior design, making the functional fabulous.
‘In a closest, always consider what you can hang on the walls, like scarves, belts, sunglasses, or jewelry. Also, a series of shallow shelves can add storage in what would usually be dead space.’
When the sleeping and living areas can easily merge into one, Jeanie advises using paint, wallpaper, and color to designate distinct areas.
‘This client wanted the kitchen to remind her of the Caribbean sea, but her personal taste is very Fifties so the bedroom’s color scheme was black, white & red with a pop of bright green.’
Another of the apartments recognized by Houzz for its ‘soft and romantic’ feel, a studio in Vancouverâ€™s leafy West End neighborhood, uses a similar trick.
But in this case, The Cross Interior Design who created the space used furniture to break up space.
In this studio in Vancouverâ€™s leafy West End neighborhood, a low, white dresser separates the bedroom from the living area
Jeanie also advises: ‘Hang artwork in tight clusters opposes to spreading throughout the space. it gives the impression of an intentional salon or gallery wall and draws the eye to a specific area.’
The project was dubbed ‘beg, borrow & steal’ because Jeanie was working on a small budget.
‘The client was in transition and had downsized from a large one-bedroom so I had to re-purpose furnishings from the other apartment,’ says Jeanie.
‘The large red china cabinet from her previous dining room became her bedroom wardrobe.
‘I covered all the glass that had once shown off her extensive stemware collection with a vintage-inspired fashion line sheet wrapping paper.’
‘With the hulking red armoire and the client’s love of pin-ups and Fifties culture, I decided to paint the remaining two walls black and create a female empowering bedroom featuring her collection of vintage pin-ups and kitschy artwork,’ she says.
‘The retaining wall is a mirror covered closet which gives the illusion the room is bigger than it is.
Interior designer Debbie Gliksman of Urban Oasis transformed this 400sqft car garage in LA into a chic studio for her daughter
‘Keeping to a red, black & white scheme with a pop of bright grass green makes the room feel tightly edited and not so austere.’
Challenging the common wisdom that dark walls make space feel smaller, Jeanie says: ‘This small studio apartment was originally cheaply painted in an off-white which just made it look dirty.
‘Dark colors in the bedroom are conducive to sleep and surprisingly made the room feel much larger.
‘The crystal cut chandelier above the bed also draws the eye up & keeping the ceiling white keeps the room from feeling claustrophobic.’
Going for the more instinctive strategy of light walls and floors, interior designer Debbie Gliksman of Urban Oasis transformed this 400sqft car garage in LA into a chic studio for her daughter.
‘Pure white walls and simple lines keep it light and airy,’ Debbie explains to the MailOnline. ‘While pops of color keep it from being sterile.
‘Pure white walls and simple lines keep it light and airy, while pops of color keep it from being sterile,’ Debbie explains. (pictured: a former car garage transformed into a chic studio apartment in LA)
‘I wanted to create a clean yet inviting space for my daughter to come home to. It was important that the small area would be fully functional as a complete living space so that she could have an independent lifestyle.’
By using flexible furnishing and well thought out floor-plans she managed to include a fully functioning eat-in kitchen, private bathroom with a spa-like shower, semi-private bedroom as well as a seating and TV area – all within the tiny space.
‘Most furniture pieces do double duty,’ Debbie explains. ‘The dining table is also an island and work table. The dresser doubles as a nightstand and the TV can be turned to face the sofa or the bed.’
‘Best of all there is abundant storage. Behind the sofa is a complete wall of storage and in-between the bathroom and kitchen is a spacious clothes closet. The kitchen also contains an ample amount of cabinets.’
It’s not only apartments that come in pint-sized packages. Kristen Everson, designer at Tennessee-based Tiny Happy Homes, is the creative talent behind this custom-made 100sqft miniature house.
It’s not only apartments that come in pint-sized packages – but houses too. Kristen Everson, designer at Tennessee-based Tiny Happy Homes, is the creative talent behind this custom-made 100 sqft miniature house
‘It’s only 6ft across and 16ft-long so we didn’t have much to work with,’ she tells MailOnline.
‘Light colors and window placement are very important as well as the high ceiling when you walk in.’
In this 270sqft London studio, designed by Olga Alexeeva at design studio Black & Milk Residential, the tiny space also functions as a mini office by day.
By day: This 270 sq ft London studio, designed by Olga Alexeeva at design studio Black & Milk Residential also functions as a mini office
By night: The bed flips down and it’s transformed into a cozy bedroom
At night the bed flips down, et voila, it’s transformed into a cozy bedroom.
Darrick Borowski, creative director for Brooklyn-based firm Jordan Parnass Digital Architecture had a similar challenge with this Manhattan studio.
Living and working in just under 500 square feet, his client Michael Pozner, head of retail development for American Apparel needed to reconfigure the space.
He’d purchased the studio back in 1999, before the boom of the last decade, and wasn’t anxious to move. But between his office needs and his many toys and quirky art pieces, the apartment was jam-packed and nothing had a place.
‘Michael had been occupying the space without ever really living in it – nothing had a home. It was like a college dorm,’ says Darrick.
‘A restrained minimal palette helped make the small home an inviting retreat from the city below,’ says Darrick of the Manhattan studio
‘Our goal was to embed his lifestyle into the DNA of the place and create an elegant and efficient environment.’
After walking the space with the client, observing and listening, the designer established some clear design objectives for the remodel. The first was to get rid of the clutter – this meant storage and lots of it.
The second was to define and organize the functional spaces for cooking, cleaning, dressing and sleeping – lending some visual clarity to the environment.
The third was to make it more ‘grown-up’.
‘Our goal was to embed his lifestyle into the DNA of the place and create an elegant and efficient environment,’ says Darrick of the Manhattan studio that is used for work, rest and play
The kitchen (left) and staircase (right) make full use of storage of the studio apartment in Manhattan: ‘The staircase doubles as storage: ‘We exploited every opportunity for storage,’ says Darrick
‘A restrained minimal palette helped make the small home an inviting retreat from the city below,’ says Darrick.
‘The solution was ultimately about exploiting every opportunity for storage and then combining those spaces and the kitchen, bathroom, and sleeping loft into an intricately sculpted wood-paneled central service core.
‘A walk-in closet was created by the meticulous detailing of the sleeping loft to create the necessary clearance for Michael’s 6′-2′ head-height.’
The end result is a highly efficient, flexible living space that feels airy and open.