3 Crazy Ideas (and 3 Not So Crazy Ideas) To Make a Small Studio Look Really Big

3 Crazy Ideas (and 3 Not So Crazy Ideas) To Make a Small Studio Look Really Big

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Nancy Mitchell
Aug 22, 2017
(Image credit: Nooks)

I've seen a lot of little apartments that, by medium of various tricks, fool you into thinking they're much larger than they are, but I have to say, this 365-square-foot Swedish apartment takes the cake. Some of the solutions found here, like not having a couch or storing glasses on the ceiling, might strike you as a little out there, but there are still plenty of others that are worth stealing for your own small home. Here are three crazy ideas, and three not so crazy ideas, from this little apartment.

(Image credit: Nooks)
(Image credit: Nooks)

Crazy idea: Don't have a sofa

One reason this small apartment looks so spacious is that all the storage (and the bed!) is concealed behind a curtain. (More on that later.) Another reason, something you'll probably notice from a quick perusal of the pictures, is that there's no couch. A couch is something we've come to think of as pretty indispensable in any home, but if you're the sort of person who would be fine with just having one comfy chair, and whose friends are okay with lounging on pillows on the floor when they come over, then you could free up a lot of space by not having a sofa at all. (Here, the "comfy chair" is a rocking chair, which may not be to everyone's taste, but you could always get something more commodious.) It's possible that this is just a styling choice, made exclusively for the photos, but still, it's an extreme small space solution that just might work for someone with the right lifestyle.

(Image credit: Nooks)

Crazy idea: Store things on the ceiling.

Are those glasses hanging on the ceiling? Well, technically they're hanging on a furr down, which is the architectural term for the little bits of ceiling that get dropped to accommodate services like plumbing and air conditioning. Still, it's a rather unusual spot to store things — but definitely out of the way, and maybe a good spot for things like stemware that you don't use every day.

(Image credit: Nooks)

Crazy idea(?): Have a bed that folds up during the day

This one's on the bubble. I will go on record, here, as saying that I hate Murphy beds. I don't think they are aesthetically or morally deficient, but I would never have one in my own home. Thing 1: I love sleeping, and sometimes I want my bed to be available to me for spontaneous acts of sleeping, like afternoon naps, or throwing oneself into bed at the end of a too-wild night. Thing 2: When you fold up a Murphy bed, you free up a great deal of floor space, but you can't really put anything permanent there unless you never want to see your bed ever again.

With these caveats expressed, I will say that the Murphy bed, concealed by curtains in the closed position, contributes a great deal to the "holy crap I can't believe this is less than 400 square feet" feel of this studio. Is that worth having to fold your bed out of a cabinet when you go to sleep every day? You decide!

Not so crazy idea: Mount a shelf above your bed

With that said, even if you decide that you like having a real bed that is always there for you whenever you happen to be sleepy, you could still benefit from a little storage above said bed. Just be sure to secure that shelf very tightly to the wall, or you might get a rude awakening—and of course, be mindful of where you live (this is likely a no-go in earthquake territory). This particular shelf appears to incorporate some built-in lights, which I think are a particularly nice touch. Anyone know where to find something like this?

(Image credit: Nooks)

Not so crazy idea: Use furniture to expand a small kitchen

Does your tiny kitchen not have enough storage? You have options. Freestanding storage pieces, like these rolling industrial racks, can make a huge difference in a small kitchen. A kitchen cart, like the one in this tiny NYC apartment, can add both storage and counter space.

Not so crazy idea: Conceal your storage

Ok, so this is not the case with the aforementioned kitchen shelves (which happen to be very nicely styled), but for the most part, concealed storage in small spaces is good policy. Everybody has at least a little bit of stuff, and being able to hide it in a cabinet or, in this case, behind a curtain cuts down on visual clutter and makes a space seem larger. (You can still leave out those of your belongings you do want people to see, like your artfully stacked pile of magazines.) The curtain here is a great solution for hiding both the Murphy bed (because who wants to look at the bottom of a bed all day) and all the closet space in the apartment.

Oh, and it's not storage, but that cork wall is pretty cool, too.

Want to see more? Check out the full thing on Nooks.

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