This Parisian studio packs an enormous amount of functionality and style into a compact 30 square meters. Light, bright and airy, the apartment has all the necessities and still manages to be very chic and comfortable.
Designed by architect Katerina Mijic, every bit of space has a purpose. The entire studio is done in a pale oak that helps keep the residence light in color and atmosphere, ideal for the owner who is a young photographer. Despite the size, this small space packs in a fully equipped bathroom and kitchen, a semi-separate room, a dining space, and a lounge area. The light green color that’s paired with the wood is also a visual link to the rooftop lawn outside the window.
A critical factor in deriving the most function from a small space is, in this case, the custom furnishings and storage units that are used in this studio space. All the furniture and built-ins are made by Domus Arhitekti in Serbia, whose award-winning team has been creating and building rational designs since 1988. From this view into the kitchen, a striking feature is the lack of hardware on cabinetry everywhere, which helps maintain a clean and uncluttered look.
While every bit of space is functional, the design includes plenty of attractive visual elements. Shelving units in pale green are accented by the green cabinet fronts in the kitchen. The full wall of storage cabinetry is broken up by the green elements, particularly the display cubby in the center. Having a few things artfully displayed helps convey an uncluttered, unstuffed atmosphere, which is key for not feeling closed in. On the right side, cube shelving units hold books and on the opposite side, a unique single row of wine cubes runs from floor to ceiling, emphasizing the height of the space.
The lounge area includes a minimalist sofa that helps maintain the clean look, and another set of shelving provides space for more books and magazines. The wall that holds the shelving also serves as the divider between the sleeping area and the rest of the space. Having a glass section by the ceiling gives the entire apartment a more open feeling, despite its compact size.
The small but very functional galley kitchen also feels more spacious because of the island. Not only does it open up the space, but it also provides a work area for food prep, since the other counter is taken up by the sink and the cooktop. Small cylinder light fixtures at the ceiling provide light in the kitchen while the pendant over the counter illuminates the workspace and gives extra light to the apartment as a whole.
In the kitchen, the refrigerator units have handles, which are not visible from other parts of the apartment. The island includes a ledge on the kitchen side instead of the dining room side, not only for those seated to look at the view out the window, but to keep the living area looking sleek. This is a handy spot to sit for morning coffee or while taking care of kitchen tasks. A small piece of neutral art adds personality to the room without cluttering up the visual aspects.
The living area is modest in size but has everything one might need. The sofa is more like a day bed, ideal for lounging or an overnight guest. Art over the sofa adds interest but doesn’t include any bright colors that would compete with the serene green throughout the residence. A small rectangular coffee table sits in front of the sofa, but a set of smaller occasional tables under the window can also be moved around as needed if entertaining. This view also gives a good sense of how the gray wood floor plays off of the oak cabinetry and picks up on the other gray accents throughout the studio, such as the upholstery on the sofa and dining chairs.
The sleeping loft, accessible via two small steps, is roomy and includes built-in elements that make it very functional. Overhead wall sconces on both sides of the bed provide reading light and a built-in shelf adds color and storage for nighttime necessities. The wall of windows — which can slide open — prevents the sleeping space from feeling claustrophobic and stuffy. In the morning, the glass wall lets the owner sit up and look out, just as if the bedroom had a real window of its own. Underneath the mattress, the platform includes drawers for clothing and linen storage, accessed from the hall.
The design of the apartment preserved enough space for the bathroom that it feels quite luxurious for being a small one. The shower is roomy and the streamlined sink sits atop a floating vanity, which helps everything feel lighter. The bathroom also has a good amount of storage space, including a little bit of open shelving for displaying a couple of decor accessories like a room diffuser. Overall, it’s a bathroom that looks like it could be in a much larger apartment.
The rendering of the studio shows the well-thought-out floor plan that makes the small space seem much larger. In fact, this home packs more function and style into 30 square meters than most apartments twice its size typically do. It also demonstrates how innovative design can transform a very small apartment into a supremely livable space.
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