A 475-Square-Foot NYC Apartment’s Renovation Took It from Beige to Barbie-Inspired

published Jun 29, 2023

A 475-Square-Foot NYC Apartment’s Renovation Took It from Beige to Barbie-Inspired

published Jun 29, 2023
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Square feet
Sq ft

On the first call with interior designer Crystal Maki, principal designer at Silverwing Interiors, apartment owner Courtney Hammond said she wanted “a place to hang out and have martinis before going out with my friends.” Maki was totally up for the challenge of infusing fun into this apartment, despite it being a 100-year-old, 475-square-foot, poorly laid-out space.

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The living room before the renovation. "In the living room we added a wall to wall built in. We hid the radiator behind a metal screened cabinet door, put in an electric fireplace, and added arched shelving backed by Omexco Gold Micah wallpaper," Maki explains.

“Previous work over many decades left the whole apartment a bit crooked. Crooked floors, crooked walls, and of course a slightly crooked ceiling made laying tile and putting in cabinetry that extended to the ceiling tricky,” Maki explains. The bed also used to jut into the bedroom entrance because it was a couple of inches too big, and storage and countertop space needed maximizing.

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"The kitchen was updated by tearing out half a wall to make room for a peninsula counter and adding refrigerator doors instead of a standard refrigerator tower to maximize counter space," Maki explains.

Hammond, who owned and lived in the apartment for two years, then rented it out for 15 years before recently deciding to renovate it as a pied-a-terre for herself, said she wanted a “funky, modern, Barbie-colored pad that made people smile and comfortable as soon as they walked in the door. I wanted to balance the fun decor with a concentrated effort on maximizing every inch of space.”

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"In the bedroom we moved the doorway over and narrowed the entrance slightly to make room for a queen sized bed. We also created a custom platform bed with storage in the headboard and shelving and cabinetry up to the ceiling," writes Maki.

Maki says her favorite thing about the space is how it’s packed with personality, but also incredibly functional. “There is storage in every room, and plenty of it. There is a sleeper sofa for guests, built-in bookcases, and cabinetry that utilizes wall space perfectly by extending to the ceiling. The custom bed has a headboard with shelving and cabinetry to the ceiling. There is even storage inside the headboard. The bathroom has a medicine cabinet that takes up almost a whole wall,” Maki details. “Courtney has a lot of things in her 475-square-foot apartment and it doesn’t feel overcrowded, which is, in and of itself, a major feat.” 

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The bathroom before the reno.





  • All plumbing and appliances were purchased at Build with Ferguson
  • Nodes lighting — Visual Comfort
  • Microwave and dishwasher – Haier
  • Refrigerator drawers — Jenn Air
  • Range — Summit
  • Sink — Elkay
  • Faucet — Delta
  • Backsplash tile, Paddington — Nemo Tile
  • Tiled floor — All Modern
  • Stools — Tov



Thanks, Courtney!

This tour’s responses and photos were edited for length/size and clarity.
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