Studio apartments in NYC have to wear many hats – living room, bedroom, dining room, rec room, entertainment space, and more. How do you make one little humble room serve so many purposes, and with style to boot? Believe it or not there are many ways to make your small space not only multi-functional, but beautiful as well.
Every Piece Should Serve Multiple Functions
Think versatility – a small console table could be a desk, a dining surface, or a place to put on your makeup. Sturdy ottomans with flat tops could be extra seating, surfaces for finger foods while entertaining, or they can act as a traditional coffee table – just add a tray on top. Nesting tables are also an awesome way of adding entertainment pieces when needed without using up valuable space when they’re not being used.
Designate Separate Living and Sleeping Areas
Even if you’re working with the tiniest of spaces, it’s important to maintain a distinct area of the room for living. We know studio apartments in NYC can be painfully small – still, if you use a little imagination and creativity you can define the areas of your home, so that it’s not all just one big chaotic jumble.
If you have to, give up a little space next to the bed by forgoing a nightstand and hang a shelf on a wall near the bed instead. This will free up some real estate for that small side table next to the sofa, or a storage cabinet that can hide clutter. So even if it means just placing your bed on one side of the room and your easy chair on the opposite side, create as much definition as possible. Glass partitions can be a unique and visually fascinating solution, and large, airy curtains can also serve to divide up the room.
Use Minimal Window Treatments
Busy window treatments draw the eye and make a space look smaller than it is. They “fill” the visual space with color and texture, taking away from the large, open illusion you’re trying to create. Use plain white or other light neutral roller shades or sheers.
Keep an Airy Color Scheme…With Pops of Surprising Color
Whether you choose white, gray, or your favorite pastel, keeping the color light and consistent throughout the room and helps give it that bigger, more spacious feeling. Don’t be afraid to add those touches that make it your own. Black and gray hand towels and shower curtain pattern, or a bright blue throw rug with coordinating vases and wall art – just these little bits of interest make a big difference in your studio apartment in NYC.
Consider Alternative Sleep Solutions
A daybed or futon can be the perfect answer to providing a multi-functional piece of furniture that also frees up valuable floor space in your tiny abode. If the configuration of your pad allows you to swing it (pun intended), have a murphy bed installed. This is the ideal design solution for a small living space because it allows you to have a dedicated living and entertaining space when you really need it.
Use Lighting to Your Advantage
Particularly if your NYC studio apartment has high ceilings, the white space can become virtually invisible. You want to capitalize on this “non-functional” area by using it for perspective – and a bold, interesting light fixture can do just that. Vintage stores and flea markets can yield some amazing pieces for just this purpose.
Don’t Let the Walls Go to Waste
Rather than tie the wall space up with a bunch of busy artwork (a piece or two is ok, you don’t want the place to be too bland) utilize floating shelves for storage. Narrow, standing bookshelves can blend in so well your guests may be think they’re built-ins, and bonus – you can mount sconces on the sides of them for extra reading light without using up extra real estate.
If you want your walls to be the home of that extra pop of color we talked about earlier, check out removable wallpaper. You can add a big dose of your own personality to your studio apartment without adding a big damages bill when you move out.
Life in the big city can be hectic, rushed, and just plain exhausting. With a little effort and creativity you can turn your studio apartment in NYC into a calm, serene haven for those precious and oh-so-few off hours. Your goal is a space that looks larger than it is, through the use of light, airy colors, multi-function furniture pieces, and storage that reduces clutter. Now that doesn’t sound too hard, right? Happy decorating!