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Bethany Kay
New York, NY
Square Feet:
What I Love About My Small Home:
The location, the fantastic southern light (I'm on the top floor of a four-story walk up), the big bathroom. I love how the bed frame of my four poster bed defines the sleeping space. A lot of friends suggested I get rid of it; I'm so glad I didn't! It's cozy at night and in the morning I wake up looking out onto a lush, green courtyard. But, most of all, I love that I can still entertain. The natural light, the high ceilings and open floor plan make the space feel bigger than it is. I've had cocktail parties with more than 20 people in my penthouse studio!
Biggest Challenge of Living in a Small Space:
Besides getting everything up 4 flights of 165-year-old stairs? The two biggest challenges were: the layout and the gross rental kitchen (complete with refrigerator that couldn't be moved from a prime location.) Every wall is broken up by an odd angle, closet, door or window, which made furniture placement challenging. Buying new pieces wasn't an option, so I had to get creative. To give the illusion of more space, I floated the coach in front of the closet, used a Lucite coffee table, and created height with artwork, furniture and lighting. To spiff up the "kitchen" I used lots of white. I painted the builder-grade cabinets and installed knobs and adding white baskets and dishes. The refrigerator- which was already white- seemed like an albatross in the middle of the apartment. I covered it with two rolls of Contact Paper to make it feel more like a piece of furniture and less like an appliance.
If I am the Grand Prize winner of Small Cool, the item(s) or project(s) from my home design wishlist that I'd like to spend my winnings on are::
I've got my eye on a few things- new pillows, a vintage overhead lighting fixture, a Swiss Army blanket. I'd also like to replace the brown velvet chair- or maybe have it reupholstered. And, I live two blocks from Parsons so I would use some of the winnings to enroll in a design class like Interior Rendering or Antiques Connoisseurship.

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