A 325-Square-Foot West Village Studio Feels Much Larger Than It Is

updated Feb 20, 2019
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(Image credit: Nancy Mitchell)

Name: Jennifer Pade
Location: West Village, New York, New York
Size: 325 square feet
Years lived in: 17 years

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You may know Jennifer’s apartment from her Renovation Diary, where we chronicled the transformation of her tiny kitchen from a crumbling disaster to a sleek, modern space. After all the dust settled, Jennifer graciously invited us back to get a look at the rest of her space. It’s quite small, but, like her kitchen, Jennifer’s apartment is beautifully and thoughtfully designed, giving it a spaciousness that belies its small footprint.

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The living room and kitchen, complete with cats. (Image credit: Nancy Mitchell)

In many ways this is the perfect little NYC apartment — beautiful kitchen, beautiful detailing, high ceilings, and a cozy little bedroom that’s just big enough for a bed. And Jennifer, who loves antique shopping and collecting interesting things all over the world, has shown admirable restraint in filling her small space with just enough pieces to keep things interesting without becoming overwhelming.

I would be remiss not to mention Jennifer’s two cats, Sophie and Spencer, who are clearly the stars of the show here. And they know it — somehow they managed to insinuate themselves into nearly every frame of the shoot. But with faces like those, no one’s complaining.

(Image credit: Nancy Mitchell)

Apartment Therapy Survey:

Our Style: My style has evolved through the years, and I’d say it’s now classic contemporary, but eclectic, which I think is very New York. I wanted an open, fresh space; something that was calm and relaxing. I love simple lines and neutral colors, but texture is also important, along with a few pops of color.

Inspiration: I’m so inspired by nature, and I love to bring natural things into my space, such as flowers, driftwood, and beach stones. I’ve spent a lot of time in southern France, and the things I’ve brought back always remind me of those trips: brass cow bells, vintage linen convent sheets, rose quartz. I’m also inspired by classic southern California interiors, and the work of Florence Knoll, Ted Muehling, and Jonathan Adler.

Favorite Element: The Shaker-style four-poster bed I’ve had for over 20 years, and it’s still in perfect condition. I love the clean, minimalist design. It barely fits in my tiny bedroom, but every time I get into bed, it feels like pure luxury.

Biggest Challenge: Space is the most obvious challenge living in an apartment this small. But its size also brings up design challenges. Something not well chosen sticks out, and you can’t just move it into a corner or another room. If I find that if something just doesn’t work, it has to go!

What Friends Say: When I first moved into my apartment, a friend said it felt like living on a boat. That actually inspired me to keep everything very simple and streamlined.

Biggest Indulgence: I’d like to say that my recent kitchen renovation was my biggest indulgence, but considering the shape it was in before, it was more of a necessity! The renovation was a challenging process, but I’m so thrilled with the results. I have so much more storage space, and I love how the new layout has opened up the whole apartment. It makes me so happy to walk into my beautiful, efficient kitchen every morning!

Best Advice: You have to be rigorous in a space this small. Anytime I bring something in, something else has to go out. That has kept me living with a minimal number of possessions, which maintains a feeling of spaciousness. And because what I do have is special, I appreciate it so much more.

Dream Sources: Barcelona’s design store Vincon has an amazing selection of modern home goods and furniture. In Barcelona I also love Cerería Subirà, a baroque-style, museum-like candle store, which is also the oldest shop in the city. Johnsons & Relatives in Florence has some of the most beautiful table linens I’ve ever seen. Each one is like a small Renaissance work of art. Last time I was there I bought a gorgeous gold & white linen table runner which I have no use for (no table), but it’s so beautiful that I just couldn’t leave without one. Also in Florence (a dream city if there ever was one) is the original Santa Maria Novella pharmacy, a cathedral-like shop/museum that has been carrying perfumes & potpourris made from local essences and plants since 1221. In NYC, it’s hard to beat ABC Carpet & Home for design inspiration. Their tabletop pieces are stunning, ranging from Moroccan glass tumblers to gold lusterware platters to iridescent flatware. At Christmastime, the entire store feels like a (very expensive) sparkling fairy palace.



• Benjamin Moore: Super White


• Tanner console table with matching leather-covered stools from Pottery Barn

• The blue ceramic box on the console table is 1960’s vintage


• Custom-made sofa from Crate & Barrel • West Elm x Steven Alan rug • Box Frame nesting tables in Whitewash mango wood from West Elm • The Large hanging mirror is a vintage find • Grove media cabinet in Walnut from Room & Board • The large photo on the media console is a kite aerial-photography piece by Scott Dunn, NYC • The black wood-framed mirror sitting on the media console is from Crate & Barrel • The Calvin Klein glass hurricane lamps were a gift • West Elm Tall Shoulder vase in white • Jonathan Adler white candleholder • Classic End Table in Quartz from Room & Board • Crate & Barrel table lamp • Ikea Abstrakt cabinetry closet, with the top piece custom made to match • Eames molded plywood lounge chair in Walnut • Martini Side Table in silver from West Elm • West Elm Sheer Linen curtains in white throughout • Everything else on the media console are personal collectibles from travels, some new, some vintage


• IKEA cabinetry: Abstrakt • Flooring: Dream Home Oceanside Plank • Countertops: Caesarstone Concrete • Dishwasher: Fisher Paykel DishDrawer single-drawer dishwasher • Oven: GE Profile Advantium • Refrigerator: Summit • Cooktop: Miele Double Burner Gas • Small mirror: vintage • The monogrammed cocktail shaker with spoon and glasses belonged to my grandfather


• The 4-poster Shaker style bed was bought at Portico Home, NYC • The blue & white quilt hanging over the bed was made by my great-grandmother • White vanity table is a flea market find that I repainted • Bedside table is from The Container Store • Beside Japaense paper lamp is from Ikea • Ikea Abstrakt wardrobe • Isabella chair from Pottery Barn in black • The pair of glass lamps on the vanity table are vintage from the 1940s • The wood-framed oval mirror on the vanity table is vintage and was originally part of a large vanity table

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Thanks, Jennifer!

*Tour previously published