Moving from a 1000 square foot Harlem two-bedroom to a tiny studio in a small town in the Midwest was a challenge, but I'm proud of how I've set up my space. My home suits my needs while making the most of the architectural details the apartment affords: high ceilings, wood floors, and the beautiful exposed brick walls. This apartment is a rental, so I'm limited in what I can do, but in the nine months I've lived here I've made the place my own with the best furniture and art I can afford on a grad student salary.
Three of My Best Tips and Tricks for Creating a Successful Small Space::
Play. Small spaces allow you to do things that could be overwhelming on a bigger scale. That was the principle when I turned my kitchen and bathroom floors into a DIY Jim Lambie installation with vinyl tape. My floor picks up the colors of the Moroccan rug in the living/bedroom, creating a sense of continuity. In 87 sq.ft., that much color is fun, while in 200 it could be headache-inducing.
Be strategic. In a small apartment, you do everything you can to make it feel spacious. I like furniture that does double duty. When you're on the settee, the walnut floor lamp is a side table. When you're in bed, it's a nightstand. In both cases, it's a reading light.
Edit. I’ve created storage where possible, but my ultimate tip is just don't have too much stuff. One of the best things about living in a small space is that it's a small space: these four walls are a constraint that forces you to clarify what for you is a need and what is a want, what is a love and what is a like.