Ten Tips For Decorating a Small Studio Apartment

by Kent Griswold on June 30th, 2008. 40 Comments
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Studio apartments can be difficult to decorate because everything is basically all in one big (or not so big) room. Sometimes this small space has to accommodate several different activities: sleeping, entertaining, cooking and an office area.

Here are ten tips for decorating a small studio apartment:

1. Provide enough storage. Try to find furnishings for your apartment that will do double duty. You can even find chairs and ottomans that have storage areas inside of them. Just lift up the top and there you will find space for blankets, pillows or other items.

2. Use containers to hide clutter. Buy wicker baskets or old steamer trunks to store out-of-season clothing, linens and towels. They will look great and contain all of those small items that make a room look cluttered.

3. Use mirrors to reflect the light. A large mirror or several small mirrors placed strategically can make a small space feel lighter and larger. If you like a more modern style of decorating, furniture and tables with metal or glass can visually expand the space.

4. Don’t block the light. Covering every window with blinds and draperies can make a small room feel dark and crowded. Leave windows bare or only cover with sheer draperies to let the light shine through. Light always makes a space seem larger.

5. Place furniture in rooms. Try to create specific areas for specific activities. Put a bed and dresser in one area for the bedroom and a sofa and coffee table in another area. Having your apartment furnishings put any-old-way can make it cluttered and uninviting. You might have to leave out the bed and use a sleeper sofa if your apartment is super-small.

6. Create a focus. If you are lucky enough to have a fireplace, accentuate it. Even if you don’t have a natural focal point, create one. Painting just one wall a different color will draw the attention into the room an make it seem bigger. Put a large credenza or entertainment center on that wall and decorate it with beautiful accessories.

7. Use dividers for larger apartments. You can find beautiful dividers in both thrift shops and high end furniture stores. Use them to enclose various areas of your space. I saw an episode on HGTV where they used four beautiful wooden dividers to make a separate bedroom. It not only provided a private sleeping area, but also created another wall on which to place furniture.

8. Keep clutter at bay. When you have a small area, clutter is not an option. Too many knick-knacks and too much furniture crowds everything together too much. Keep your necessary items, such as extra bed linens put away in a dresser or wicker baskets. Kitchen counters should be kept clean with everything in the cupboards if possible.

9. Another trick for a small space is to buy furniture with legs and that are higher off of the floor. Your eye will look under these pieces of furniture and add visual space. Furniture that is blocky and low to the ground makes a room appear more crowded.

10. Paint with lighter colors. You don’t have to use white, but using paint colors that are lighter in color expands a space more than dark colors.

Decorating a studio apartment can be a challenging task, but using the above tips can help you get started in the right direction.

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Source: Home Management

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June 30th, 2008and filed in Tiny House Articles
Tags: Tiny House Articles
40 Comments

40 Responses to “Ten Tips For Decorating a Small Studio Apartment”

  1. Terrie says:

    Decorating small spaces is a daunting task. I work mostly with condos at the coast. I have found a great resource for furniture for small spaces, as well. It’s a company that primarily sells online called Simplicity Sofas and you can access them here http://www.simplicitysofas.com. I bought some furniture for my condos and it is very high quality and designed to fit through tight spaces. They have regular sized sofas, apartment sofas, storage ottomans, chairs, and over 50 fabrics to choose from. I purchased their sleeper sofa for one of my clients, because the condo was basically one big room. The sofa is incredible. It’s a 20 inch air sleep system. I thought your readers might want to know of this resource.

  2. Kent says:

    Hi Terrie,

    Thanks for the link to that great site. I appreciate it. It looks like they would be perfect for tiny houses and small spaces. Maybe I’ll do a little write up on them.

    Kent

  3. di says:

    Fewer possessions:

    7 outfits, 2 pair shoes, wallet, laptop
    all-weather hooded jacket, boots, gloves

    Store dishes vertically on narrow shelves with mug hooks beneath shelf. Omit dish drainer – dry dishes on towel. Use towel as potholder, knife as spatula, fork as whisk, mug as ladle. Use pot as mixing bowl, ordinary teaspoon and mug to measure. Reuse jar for leftovers, canister, utensils, or vase. Omit ironing board – place towel over counter to iron.

    Assemble 3′ x 7′ shelf as window seat and for sleeping. Store bedding in floor cushions. Use floor cushions at window seat for dining or as desk. Curtain beneath seat to cover storage.

  4. [...] 10 Tips For Decorating a Studio Apartment [...]

  5. Terrie says:

    Thanks Kent for the response to add a review to your website. You should do it!

    I can tell you stories about the frustrations of getting apartment sofas or small sofas or even chairs, let alone – - living room sets into tiny houses and condos. Until I found Simplicity Sofas. http://www.simplicitysofas.com

    I ran across an overwhelming review on another site about this company. I thought I would check back and let your readers see the response: http://www.furniture-for-small-spaces.com/ready-to-assemble-sofas.html

    I have started putting this furniture into RVs and live on-board boats now as a result; but my love is small, tiny houses, just like yours! Imagine that. This is great quality furniture for tiny houses.

    A great avenue for your readers …

  6. If you are looking for custom house plans, architectural designs, apartment plans or a custom house plan, check out KFMArchitecturalDesign.com

  7. I bought some furniture for my condos and it is very high quality and designed to fit through tight spaces. They have regular sized sofas, apartment sofas, storage ottomans, chairs, and over 50 fabrics to choose from.

    Holiday Apartments Bol

  8. This is great stuff. Light is so important and, as you point out, using light colors can really help you get more mileage out of the wattage and sunlight you already have.

    Towels is a cool idea and great for those on a budget. I’d also say “fabrics” for getting different colors and textures.

    Check out more decorating tips here: http://bit.ly/axarag

  9. Kaitlin says:

    These tips are great! Also, check out this site. I have used and even bought some of the stuff off this site when I decorated my apartment down at school. It’s http://www.squidoo.com/apartmentdecorations

    Its really convenient and shares a lot of good tips!

  10. [...] Home Sweet Home Apartment Style Posted on September 13, 2010 by mrscutiepiebride So I used to live in this area called Patterson Park. Which in the beginning I adored. I loved being able to take my dogs to the park, hang out at the park. But as I started to realize like every other area, they have their fair share of crime. Now mind you I have worked in some pretty tough neighborhoods and can hold my own. Plus my dogs and me we are one(s) to be reckon with! However I have grown up in East Baltimore, MD. You know Hampden, Cold Spring, Mt. Washington and etc… Well I have lived most of my twenties in those areas and loooved it. I started missing what I consider home. So back to Hampden I went and found a familar apartment. Now this will sound odd but this apartment is familar because an old ex of mine used to live there. I always thought this was by far one of the best apartments ever and I already knew what to expect. Heat wise, air wise, bug wise neighbor wise you name it. I spent almost 4 years of my life in this apartment with my ex and it was amazing times! So why not re-visit happy memories right? Get to the point you say as you read all of this craziness! Well I moved in and totally need to decorate! Ah hah I knew this story had a point,lol. All of my walls are bare except a recent Maryland poster(framed) but I want to add things to decorate that are A. in-expensive and B. Chic and Cute. So where do you turn for such. DOMINO. Does anyone remember this wonderful magazine, that was made for us apartment dwellers. Well I do, so I search the internet for some fun finds to redecorate my apartment. Keep in mind I am looking for Eco Friendly, Dog Friendly, the off again on again current boyfriend friendly ( that was a mouth full) also did I mention it has to make me HAPPY In my midst of searching I came across these top ten things for decorating small or studio spaces ( my space is way bigger then a studio space but thought it would be helpful)http://tinyhouseblog.com/tiny-house/ten-tips-for-decorating-a-small-studio-apartment/  [...]

  11. gf says:

    For my small space the key was to seek out narrow versions of furniture. When your apartment’s largest dimension is only 11 feet a 30 inch deep dresser or chest of drawers chews up most of it. I ended up getting made-to-order 9 inch deep book cases with doors for clothing storage.

  12. [...]  http://tinyhouseblog.com/tiny-house/ten-tips-for-decorating-a-small-studio-apartment/ [...]

  13. Thanks so much for sharing! There are many great ways to decorate small spaces. Just because you home is small doesn’t mean your design can’t be big! Best of luck to all of you!

  14. [...] storage, arrangement, and more. To give our Gulfstream Isles residents a hand, we’ve found this great article full of interior design tips. Here are a few to get you [...]

  15. Mat' says:

    Great ! A lots of ideas. Love the pics. I’ll share it on my blog déco and design

  16. This just shows what you can do if you really want to. You take a little and make a lot . Just looking at this you would not think it was a studio? it looks very comfortable.I would stay in this and feel like a queen. Keep the good work up whom ever this studio belongs to

  17. [...] AppliancesChoosing the perfect bathroom tapsChoosing the perfect bathroom tapsFish Bathroom DécorTen Tips For Decorating a Small Studio Apartment .social_button { float:left; width:130px; display:inline-block; [...]

  18. [...] Boston Studio ApartmentsTips for Decorating Boston Studio ApartmentsNy Apartments For BookTen Tips For Decorating a Small Studio ApartmentTen Tips For Decorating a Small Studio Apartment Apartments In Tampa [...]

  19. [...] term. I would keep your window open and encourage them to smoke outside.Powered by Yahoo! AnswersMark asks…Good air purifier for smoke?I am a medical marijuana user, a card carryer in Canada. My …ir purifier for smoke?I am a medical marijuana user, a card carryer in Canada. My landlord has given [...]

  20. Jin Jarnus says:

    Generally it is fairly easy to take out a loan on an apartment as long as it has the size of about two or more bedrooms. Banks and lenders have no qualms of granting loans on these purchases. The difficulty is essentially when one would like to loan in order to purchase a single bedroom or studio type apartment. These are also called bachelor pads, bedsitter units, or single bedroom apartments. The reason why banks are adverse to these apartments is that they think that the resale of these apartments will be difficult, and in case of default, it will be hard to get back the money through a sale of the property.

  21. [...] Source: TinyHomeBlog Share this:TwitterFacebookLike this:LikeBe the first to like this. [...]

  22. [...] the wall will make your room seem wider, while vertical stripes can add inches to the height. The Tiny House blog recommends using mirrors, or even glass tables and metal chairs, to reflect the [...]

  23. [...] the ceiling lighting adds a great accent. The zebra rug anchors the elements of the room.  Images 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 There’s many things to add to any studio spaces. [...]

  24. [...] lindo, porém bem pequeno estúdio? Se este é o seu caso, acomode-se na cadeira e aproveite. O tinyhouseblog dá dicas super legais de como organizar e decorar um estúdio e assim torná-lo um lugar gostoso, [...]

  25. Ryan says:

    I have a studio apartment that is approx. 400 sq feet, and I recommend utilizing a modern style loft bed. I put a loveseat under my queen loft bed, but I think a great use is to put a desk under as well. See http://www.francislofts.com for aluminum loft beds that are designed for adults. They have 10 unique colors to choose from.

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  27. Bob Ratcliff says:

    Tip for those looking at great design photo’s. Look for the three following things before falling in love. Where’s a telephone, plenty of lights and a clock next to the bed? That picture above is luscious yet I only saw one light and none of the other. As a designer myself, I’ve found people are the happiest in an environment that “works” for them, not just looks pretty. We can have both, but it’s tricky. I loved many of the other ideas listed in this article:)

  28. TomLeeM says:

    those are really good tips; IMO.

  29. […] of brightening a room and making it feel less cloistered. You’ve probably heard someone advise using mirrors to make small rooms feel large. The mirror approach is often a bit drastic and obvious, but you […]

  30. […] of brightening a room and making it feel less cloistered. You’ve probably heard someone advise using mirrors to make small rooms feel large. The mirror approach is often a bit drastic and obvious, but you can […]

  31. […] also liking these articles:   Ten Tips for Decorating A StudioApartment Therapy: 2012 Smallest/Coolest Home ContestBrooklyn Couple, 240 Sq. Foot […]

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