When I moved into this apartment, I wanted a small place, but I still wanted distinct living zones (no Murphy beds or sleeper sofas). This place has a lot of quirky wall jogs and three big closets that eat up my total square footage, making that separate zone goal tough, but I ultimately got there. I have my kitchen/dining/office, a lounge area, and my sleeping area. When I'm in one area, I truly feel separate from the others and, my ultimate goal in studios, I can't see the kitchen from the bed. The three big closets are pretty amazing too.
By far, our favorite feature is the open floor plan! We can cook and entertain (or be entertained) at the same time - and we've never been able to do that before! We also love that having moved into a small space, we were forced to identify what we really needed, and what we could live without. We sold or donated a full room of goods, and kept only things we truly valued: accidental treasures (like our 70's technics record player), our investment pieces, and souvenirs we've collected on our travels.
We love that our small craftsman cottage doesn't feel all that small. Anything you'll ever need is within reach and nearly impossible to misplace. Many home improvement projects are affordable because of the small scale. We have great parties, too. Our friends can mingle throughout the house and into the garden in front. We also have a little patio just outside of the kitchen with a big grill that we use religiously. We love our neighborhood - we're a block from all of the greenery and trees of Balboa Park, and we get the loveliest clean air breezes sweeping up the canyon. The San Diego Zoo is nearby too, and I love to think about how all of those wild animals are our neighbors.
We moved to Ann Arbor from San Francisco in the summer of 2012. Although we signed to lease without viewing the apartment, we have fallen in love with the historic charm, warm natural light, and hardwood floors of the space. Having a small home doesn't mean that we have to sacrifice our love for vintage, thrifted finds and personal style. Instead, we have found ways to incorporate our found treasures into each room of our home. Each piece tells a story about a specific time in our lives, and we love to share our small home with friends and family.
This is my first place, bought when I was 26, and was on a very tight budget. But, one thing was clear to me from the beginning: I wanted to buy the smallest and ugliest place possible so I could make it my own, one step at the time. I was so glad the layout of the condo felt right and designed thoughtfully. After being here for several years, I love how the space is maturing along with me.
We love our classic Philadelphia home, a two-story row house called a workingman’s house, with its 21” wide staircase and oven that requires nonstandard cookie sheets. Its petite proportions are ours alone and inspire sewing and painting projects, small-scale game nights, and creativity in a quiet home office. It fits everything we need right now and leaves just enough room for improvements (which we enthusiastically tackle on the weekends, thanks to an accommodating landlord).
I like the wall of big arched windows - being on the top floor of a 1925 office building provides that sort of interesting structure. Having Hollywood Boulevard right outside my front door is also very lively; things are always changing, and it's always crowded on the sidewalk. There's a nice view of the Hollywood Hills from the sofa. It's bright during the day and at night, the lights from the hills and the office building next door are a nice touch. I can't invite people over for a sit-down dinner, but I have hosted buffets, and have friends over here for drinks before we go to a restaurant or show.
I appreciate the little quirks and vintage details that complete our 1940s home - the apple green, shiplap ceiling, the ceramic white hex tile on the kitchen counter complete with chips and dings, the original pine floors worn with patina, and the old windows which inevitably stick and won't open when the A/C goes out yet provide gorgeous light to stream in throughout the day. I am partial to the layout of the home - although it has a small footprint, - it lives large and has a nice flow. Cleaning is also a lot less of a chore, and can be accomplished rather quickly if unsuspecting guests happen to announce they will be dropping by within the hour.
I love the natural light that we get in our small apartment thanks to the large double windows in both the living area and bedroom, which are pretty hard to come by in NYC apartments. The windows are east facing, so the sun rises and shines into the apartment in the morning. I also like that it is generally one open space, yet corners and nooks lend themselves to creating separate personal spaces.