5 New Yorkers Who Made the Most of Seriously Small Apartments

From the Archives: Greatest Hits

I never fail to be impressed by the ingenuity of city dwellers living in itty bitty teeny tiny spaces. Especially now that I'm shopping for apartments in New York, and all I can think is... where do you put the furniture? Here are five apartments belonging to real New Yorkers who have solved that problem in creative ways, and managed to squeeze a lot of living out of a little space.

I really like what Linsey's done with a fairly typical New York studio layout. By placing the bed and the sofa on opposite walls, she creates a bit of a distinction between bedroom and living room — and also carves out a tiny workspace to the left of the bed.

Jennifer's New York apartment is only 136 square feet... but you'd never know it from looking at this picture. Jennifer has managed to create a separate sleeping area and a fairly spacious living room with one clever trick: turning the sofa so that it's parallel to the bed. The back of the sofa functions as a sort of wall, creating privacy for the bed, and a curtain between the two enhances the effect.

Charlotte's 300 square foot apartment has a lot going on... but somehow it all works. She's used a bar table to expand her small kitchen, and also created a bedroom, living room, and a small desk area. A small sofa helps everything fit, and the apartment's long, narrow layout works to her advantage. Rugs help to define separate spaces (like the living room) and a cohesive color palette keeps things from feeling too busy.

Garret's apartment feels a lot bigger than its 340 square feet, thanks to the clever use of a Murphy bed. His living room furniture fits neatly around the footprint of the bed, so he's able to have a full living room setup during the day, and a bedroom at night.

Stephanie has a really unique solution for laying out a studio space: instead of trying to hide the bed in a corner, she places it in the center of the room. Most studios wind up feeling a bit like a living room that happens to have a bed in it, but Stephanie's place is like a big, beautiful bedroom with a sitting room in one corner. It's an unusual solution, but one that works really well for her space — and might make a lot of sense for someone who spends more time in their apartment sleeping than anything else.

Re-edited from a post originally published 1.29.15-NT

(Image credits: Stephanie; Linsey; Jennifer; Charlotte; Garrett)