Studio Apartments That Don’t Feel like Studios at All (And How They Can Make Your Small Space Better)

published Aug 14, 2016
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Studio living comes with a lot of perks, like saving money on rent and living closer to a city’s urban action. But it comes at a price, too—mainly having to sleep, eat, work and exist, all in one room. Those who use design wisely, however, can manage to make a studio feel…less studio-ish. Here are five studio apartments that do just that—and how they pulled it off.

(Image credit: Ellie Arciaga Lillstrom)

Jeanette and Mikul’s California loft is on the large size, which can definitely help a one-room studio feel less studio-ish. But they also employ a vital design tool to make their one-room living feel better: They shape intimate zones for a feeling of separate rooms using rugs to create specific living areas.

(Image credit: Marie-Lyne Quirion)
(Image credit: Marie-Lyne Quirion)

Julien’s studio apartment is pretty tiny, and yet, despite being able to see every corner of his home from just about any spot in the space, it just doesn’t feel like it’s only one room. Why? Clever use of varying furniture heights and a killer furniture layout. Both his office desk and dining table are pushed up against walls to save space. The center of his studio features a clean living room layout, but notice how the height of the sofa back and the side chair backs help visually divide the living room area from the rest of the space.

(Image credit: Jessica Isaac)

No walls? Make your own out of storage pieces. You’ll not only add much-needed storage space to a small home, but you’ll be able to fashion a small, cozy nook that can be used as a bedroom. It can be just the thing you need to add a little privacy to a one-room home.

(Image credit: Brittany Purlee)

When you’ve only got one room to work with…turn a closet into a room to use! Obviously, not every closet is large enough for this trick, but in Anna’s Chicago studio apartment, there’s just enough room to squeeze a bed in there, and that’s just enough to help feel like she doesn’t sleep in her living room.

(Image credit: Erin Galvin)

Dominic got smart in his West Hollywood studio by using two different design tricks. One, he custom built dividing walls, but half height walls. This gives dimension to different areas in the studio but doesn’t block light or clutter the space. Secondly, he too found a use for a closet; he created a compact office that he can close the door on when he’s finished with work.