After living in a spacious 3 bedroom apartment complete with a dining room, living area, den, AND in-unit washer and dryer, it was difficult to come to terms with the fact that I would now be living in a single room. Studio apartments are intimidating at first. I’m not sure who thought it was ok to have someone pay a preposterous amount each month, only to have your stove act as your bedside table. But once I saw my apartment, I was able to open my mind to what could be, and I now love my little space.
I’ve been living here since May but now that it’s finally done (thanks to my mom’s many Homegoods/TJ Maxx trips) I’m ready to share some tips on how to make a small space feel like home.
Play with the space you’re given
“It’s a studio. It will be small.” That’s what I had to keep repeating to myself throughout the decorating process in order to remind myself not to make it something it wasn’t. You have to play with the space that you’re given. Don’t try to cram a sectional couch in your 400 sq. ft apartment if it’s just not realistic. I wanted a couch so badly to have an isolated “living area” to watch TV that was separate from my bed. But I came to the realization that it just wasn’t going to work out like I had envisioned. Instead, I got the measurements of the extra space I had and did some research which led me to a compromise. This Corner Chair with separate Ottoman fits perfectly in this little nook. Two people can fit comfortably, and it gives another option for seating that’s separate from my bed. I found this one from a local furniture store but found another option here.
These gold mirrored tables from TJ Maxx, are great because they can be pushed under my chair to create even more space. I double these as a laptop workspace, and dinner tables.
I threw this pink velvet pillow on there for a pop of color and this white doily edged throw for a feminine touch (both from Homegoods). This is literally my favorite spot in my room. I love turning on the TV, drinking coffee, and starting my day here.
I also have a long narrow hallway leading into my room that I wanted to utilize in some way. I found this gold, narrow console table at Joss and Main that gives me an area to place my keys and mail while walking through the door. I added a fun lamp for extra lighting and a decorative mirror.
Hidden storage will save you
One of the biggest things I was nervous about (and I think most people are nervous about when moving into a studio) is STORAGE. I just thought about all of my clothes, coats, winter boots. How would it all fit?! Well it did, not sure how, but it did. Partially because of some handy storage pieces. The ottoman that came with my corner chair as well as the white furry stools at the foot of my bed have hidden storage to stow away cumbersome items. The furry stools are from TJ Maxx but here’s some similar ones from Bed, Bath, and Beyond at a great price! Also, I have some cheap under the bed storage bins that are useful for storing non-everyday items.
Height is your friend
Since studio apartments have limited surface area, I’ve found that it’s best to work up. Look for tall and narrow furniture like this bookcase. It’s only 23.75inW x 16inD and it’s 66in tall with 6 shelves. This is so much storage and also gives the opportunity for some fun décor. I added some picture frames, books, plants, and a desk organizer to keep important paperwork, and stationary. The bottom shelf is great storage for things like your ugly Wifi modem.
Floating shelves are also a nice option for extra storage and functionality that doesn’t take up surface area. For instance, my bathroom only has one outlet, and of course it’s in the middle of the wall, away from my counter top. This isn’t ideal for charging my electric toothbrush. So I got this mini gold plastic floating shelf (so cheap) from Amazon to charge it by the outlet.
And finally, make room for something fun!
In order to make your studio a place you’ll love and want to be, you need to make some space for something fun! For me, it’s my bar cart. I’ve talked about it before, but I love decorating it and getting to show it off. It gives me the opportunity to be creative and I get so excited when I find something to add to it. Is it necessary? No. But I love coming home and seeing it, and think it adds some personality to my space.
In short, don’t be afraid of small spaces! Know that you can make your space work in whichever way you please with these helpful tips and in the end, you will have your own little haven.
Here’s the links the some other cute finds that I’ve added to my apartment!