Chris and Amber had a problem common to a lot of New York City homeowners: a family that kept growing, and an apartment that stubbornly remained the same size. After the birth of their first son they decided to look for a two-bedroom apartment, but were unable to find anything acceptable in their price range. When the impending arrival of a second baby really raised the stakes, they decided that maybe the solution was to renovate the apartment they already had. Here's how some clever upgrades transformed Chris and Amber's kitchen — and turned a one-bedroom apartment into two.
Previously, the apartment had a galley kitchen which opened off the foyer, with a small dining area on one side. Chris and Amber knew they wanted to convert the eat-in bit of the kitchen to a bedroom for their oldest son, but weren't quite sure how to make this work with their existing floorplan.
The solution their design team came up with was to tear down the wall between the kitchen and living room, opening up access along one of the long sides of the kitchen, and enclose the dining area as a bedroom. They also closed off the doorway between the kitchen and the foyer, which no longer feels like, as Amber put it,"a cross between Grand Central and a stroller parking lot."
A transom in the wall between the new bedroom and the kitchen allows light from the bedroom to reach deeper into the apartment.
For the kitchen itself, Chris and Amber stuck to fairly neutral finishes, since they do anticipate moving eventually, when the youngest gets old enough to need his own room. The white cabinets and white quartz countertop give the kitchen a bright, modern feel, while the wooden shelves add a little bit of warmth. The peninsula between the kitchen and living room provides plenty of space for food prep and entertaining.
In the foyer/hallway, one less door means a little extra storage space. And in the newly configured living room, a farmhouse table provides the perfect spot to eat as a family.
Chris and Amber found their contractors, Kent and Nick, on Sweeten, a free online resource that connects homeowners with local design and construction experts for renovations. You can read more about the project, see more photos, and find sources on the Sweeten blog.