200 sq ft Studio Apt Awesomeness


Hi everyone! Today I am featuring the design of a studio apt in the hip west village neighborhood (Manhattan). The apt is (don’t faint!) approx 200 square feet (no need to rub your eyes .. you read correctly .. approx. 200 sq ft). Decorator to the rescuuuuuuue (moi!).

In one open space I managed to fit a sophisticated bedroom area with kick-arse closet system, an elegant living room, a cozy dining area, and a welcoming foyer… all within my client’s budget. Oh, yeah .. my client, Tracy, had mentioned that she has a lot of jewelry so of course I HAD TO squuueeezzze in a pretty vanity area (with mirror and cute ottoman):

Ready to see the before photo? Here it is . . . .

My client had been very busy traveling for the company that she works at that she hasn’t paid too much attention to the state of her home. The time was NOW to decorate her home to reflect her beautiful personality and style – a sophisticated home that she could invite friends over and even more important …. that would welcome her home with love from a busy day at work. We kept the bed and TV, and artwork that she gathered from her travels. FURNITURE PLACEMENT WAS KEY to maximizing this space with looots of storage.

We took the bed (which has drawers on the base) from its current location and placed it on the opposite wall, aligned it vertically, and attached a gorgeous headboard. Check out the furniture placement below:One of my signature design “moves” (yep, just like “dance moves” I have “design moves” haha) = I love incorporating circular items in rectangular/ square rooms (it makes the space feel softer). The circular mirror looks AMAZING in this area, plus bec it is a mirror, it makes the space feel a bit larger (did you forget that the space is 200 sq ft?). Here are more pics . . .

Contractor removed the thin window blinds, and we replaced them with soft roman shades AND curtains (to make the apt dark to help Tracy sleep in on weekends).

The foyer’s bench also serves as extra seating in the living room (for more friends + family to hang out) …   Sofabed elegance . . . (yep, now Tracy’s friends can stay overnight).

The design incorporated storage GALORE … in the HUGE closet system (bedroom), under the bed (drawers), in the bookcase (living room), in the (foyer) bench, and wall shelves (in dining area + foyer) to hold artwork.

I designed the bookcase to have doors facing the living room and drawers (for undies, socks, etc.) facing the bedroom. Cool beans, right?

Yep, I’m still taking most of the photos with the help of my assistants. The runner besides the bed are carpet tiles with different blue hues that I mixed-matched for visual interest, then with a sharpie I outlined the cuuurves and the contractor did an AMAZING job trimming it.

Closer peek . . . (psst, even the vanity provides extra storage with it’s wide drawer).

It was important to keep the TOP bookcase cubes OPEN to allow sunlight to shine shine shine-in ooh soo elegantly + so Tracy could continue displaying items that she purchases when she travels.

Dontcha love the adorable round side table below, and how much light shines in the apartment . . . .

Here’s a look at the BEFORE photo of the opposite (from window) wall. There was no designated area in the foyer to drop the keys/mail, hang coats/hats/bags, rest the tushy when arriving to take off ones shoes, and no personality . . . .

But, NOT anymore!!!! Mail/key holder placed next to the intercom phone, coat rack placed in the opposite wall, and …. did you see the coooool white branch hook?

We managed to squuuuueeze in a dining area. Tracy definitely wanted an area that she and 1 guest could sit and enjoy brunch and dinner. So we added a drop leaf counter (which would look AMAZING painted with an cheery/ebony stain), floating wine glass holder, and shelve. What do you think of the design? In case I didn’t mention this before  …. 200 sq ft space people!

Knowing WHAT TO KEEP is as important as what to change. The studio apt had lots of character … with it’s ornate ceiling and brick walls. We added 3 round mirrors to the brick wall to make it look open and airy and …. gorgeous.


1. your wall is your friend (add a wide/tall closet system)
2. mingling middle (add tall bookcase with drawers + doors)
3. tushy comfort (add benches that have storage)
4. hide under the bed (no, not you but your stuff | get bed with drawers underneath or containers to hold your seasonal stuff)
5. divine dining (you can convert a small area into a dining space with drop leaf counters)
6. Shelf it up! (add wall mounted shelves to hold art + decor)

Wow, I wrote a lot today. Thanks for stopping by!!! Have an amazing day!

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18 Responses to 200 sq ft Studio Apt Awesomeness

  1. You did am amazing job here, Ada! You have given her all the essentials plus more and it looks elegant and comfortable and inviting and so plush as well as gives the impression that the apartment is more spacious than it is. She must be thrilled!

    • Ada says:

      Thanks Lisa – so magical how much furniture you can add to a room while still maintaining a comfortable walking space (no TRIPPING over furniture items when everything has it;s special place!).

      • Ati says:

        Where is that book shelf from?! With all the compartments 🙂

      • Ada says:

        Hi Ati! The bookshelf divider is from Ikea, we were able to customize it by adding doors (to face the living room for books etc) and drawers (to face the bedroom for socks etc)

  2. noreen says:

    really lovely, ada. tracy has a well-thought-out and designed home. good for her for hiring you!

  3. Michele says:

    Whoa! My 500 sq ft seems gigantic now! 😉

    You did a fantastic job! What a transformation!

  4. homestilo says:

    Ada it turned out amazing. So bright, romantic and orderly. And I really like the round mirror/element “move” too!

  5. Ada says:

    Thanks Santa. Great furniture placement (+ designer wink wink) to the rescuuuuuue!

  6. Lauren says:

    Wow, they did a really great job of maximizing such a small space.

    • Ada says:

      They? Haha, I created the design – wink! Thankfully, clients trust my vision to reflect their personality, style, and budget. My clients are AWESOME!!

  7. Candice says:

    You have given me some ideas for my room! Can’t wait to try them out! Love this space!

  8. Scan Design says:

    Nice work. I especially like that bookcase, how some of the cubes are open to let background light shine through, beautiful.

    • Ada says:

      Yes, the studio apt only have ONE window, so I designed the bookcase to have open shelves so light could pass threw, other shelves had drawers for extra storage (socks etc.) Glad u liked it, thanks for stopping by.

  9. Bri says:

    What is the brand/style of this closet storage system?

    • Ada says:

      Hi Bri! I’m guessing you like it since you are asking for more detail : ) Hmmm, not sure of the name (without having to pull the clients file out), BUT it was definitely purchased at Ikea. ….. maybe their KALLAX bookshlef? Have a BEAUTIFUL day!

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