Location: Upper West Side, NYC
Size: 366 s/f Alcove Studio
Found objects, aka mongo; Craig's list; Ikea, cheap, practical, and easy.
What inspired you?
I am used to small spaces. I grew up in a very small apartment in a brownstone walk-up on Manhattan's Upper West Side. Originally a one bedroom, my parents folded another bedroom into the space by shrinking the bathroom and wrapping the second bedroom, equipped with a loft bed, around it. I also grew up with what my mother calls "street finds."
...A rather self-explanatory term, it signifies a piece of furniture discovered on the street, lugged home, cleaned, and lovingly incorporated with rest of the furniture. But a street find is more than just a table or a chair – it is also a treasure, and a symbol of life in New York City.
When I moved into this studio, I called on my experience of living in small places. I have tried to use the furniture to designate different spaces for working, eating, relaxing, and sleeping. However, because the apartment is so small, each designated space must fit together with its neighbors, like a puzzle. For example, when I work at the desk, the couch doubles as work table where I can spread out papers.
Yet because the ceilings are very high (nearly 18 feet) and the windows are large, the apartment actually feels quite spacious.
Mix old and new, and warm and cold.
The most satisfying challenge of creating an efficient layout in this space is that most of my furniture was discovered on the street, either by me or someone close to me. I found the glass table top which sits on top of a base my grandmother found in Milwaukee, and a friend found the chaise lounge base. Of course, I had to purchase a minimal number of things, like the Intermetro unit, because the kitchen has no counter space. But found or purchased, modern or traditional, the things in the apartment layer and converge to give a sense of openness and history to the space.