An Inspiration Board for a Small
NYC Apartment

Design Diary

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As I mentioned in my first Design Diary post, my best friend Eleni is moving to from Boston to New York City. She's secured an apartment, but we have yet to see it in person. We have, however, seen a few pictures of the space, which provide just enough information to get my design wheels turning...

We don't know square footage yet, but we do know it's a small, railroad-style apartment. There's enough space in the living room to fit a full-size sofa, a slight entertainment unit, and one or two other accent pieces. The kitchen is big enough for a little eat-in table, and the bedroom will just barely fit a queen-size bed and dresser.

I'd like to create a calm and relaxing space for Eleni to come home to after a long day at the hospital. Therefore, to minimize visual noise, I'll keep the color palette tight and consistent throughout the small apartment. We fell in love with the above image from plattdana architects and have decided to use it as the jumping off point for the overall design.

It's early in the process and I still need to verify what will really fit in the space, but so far, these are my thoughts (clockwise from the top):

Dark blue sofa, preferably velvet - May end up being a sleeper sofa, but I do like the way this one is raised up off the floor, creating more visual space.

Light rug, with a bit of pattern - A souk rug like this would keep things bright and play nicely off the wood floors in the living room.

Round mirror - I'd love to hang a mirror between the two windows in the living room. Perhaps with a petite wooden bar cabinet below.

Fig or lemon tree - A bit of large-scale greenery would add a touch of life and drama to the space.

Étagère entertainment unit (painted gold) - Airy and functional, this piece would add storage without becoming overbearing.

Glass knobs - Switching out the hardware would add a glamorous custom element to the kitchen cabinets.

Round glass table - The flooring in the kitchen is black, and a glass-topped table would take up little visual space while still providing ample room for eating and working. I particularly love the organic quality of this table base.

Given that Eleni's funds were severely depleted in securing her apartment, this project will have a pretty tight budget and may be completed over time. However, having an inspiration board will help us focus ideas and ensure that the items purchased remain in line with our design intention.

(Image: Bethany Seawright)

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