One Room Challenge Week 2: Studio Makeover Design Plan

This post is in partnership with Apt2B because I love em & I know you will too!
— xo... Albie

We’re a week into this 6 week studio apartment transformation and man oh man, am I excited for what’s to come! 

So what do we have in store?

As I shared last week, this is a studio apartment in Brooklyn, NY. Translation: small...very, very small. Not tiny house living small but if you know anything about living in NY, then you know the apartments aren’t exactly known for their large square footage. 

As is the case with most apartments, the small footprint results in a lack of storage, and so that will be the biggest challenge that I am designing around here. 

Brooklyn , NY Studio Floor Plan

As with many studio apartments, once you walk in there’s an open area for sleeping & living — no entryway. To the left there’s a small galley style kitchen, flanked by a decent size bathroom. The great thing about the bathroom is that it was recently renovated after some not so fun plumbing issues. This means fresh, new finishes. 

In the living area, there’s a quasi loft space that’s perfect for storage, but not for everyday use.  This’ll be great for storing season items and such when it comes times to sort through the purge I assigned her.

But here’s the thing — we don’t just have a lack of storage. we have a lack of style. 

She is a super stylish, super chic NYC gal on the go, and her apartment is just on the go. Lol.

The apartment features some of the most amazing architectural details so I plan to optimize the space without sacrificing any of the existing style elements.  Instead by enhancing them, this’ll infuse some much needed character into the apartment. 

The aesthetic is very Hygge chic, so lots of cozy textures, neutral tones, and natural materials, allowing her space to feel like a sanctuary for relaxation, versus just a room over her head. 

Decluttering and purging is a huge part of this process. Spoiler: I’ve tasked her with getting rid of A LOT of things — like a lot — because before we can make anything pretty, things have got to get cleared out. 

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As a self professed “girly girl”, I wanted to infuse slightly more feminine pops so blush tones, soft metals, and where I can get away with it, lots of acrylic! 

I can’t do anything about the existing footprint but by using soft tones, acrylic finishes, and stylish storage, I can definitely optimize the space for sleep, work, and play. 

“But Albie that’s a dark sofa in your mood board.”

Yes, yes it is. And here’s why…

The previous sofa was very, very light, to the point of getting lost in the backdrop of all the other light furnishings and white walls. Paired with a dark desk and cocktail table, those items ended up being what stood out, and that’s not what we need here. Going with a dark, contrasting sofa allows there to be a clear delineation between the “bedroom” and “living room” while having a proper show piece — the sofa, not the tables around the sofa.

The mid-century inspired silhouette paired with the right jute rug (swoon) and some textured throw pillows... just gimme all the stay-at-home-on-a-Friday-night vibes! 

With the loft being right off the living room, I’m also designing around a functioning ladder. No big deal. My hope is to incorporate it into the design anyway, since using the vertical space here will be clutch. 

Moving into the sleeping area, because of the close proximity, the design is one that could totally thrive on its own but still compliments the living concept. 

Studios have to be designed holistically or you end up with a hodge podge of ideas fighting one another at every turn. 

While a storage bed would’ve been technically ideal for tackling the storage issue, the clearance to actually use the drawers would’ve been an absolute joke, so instead why not go with a a big girl bed that’s stunning but not ornate, sleek but not dull, and can easily be designed around. Here is also where I’m hoping to have a bit more fun with the rug since it’s a larger area. 

As I work my way through the design — specifically the editing process — I’ll have to be mindful of what she’s getting rid of on her end on the other side of the country so that when it comes time to organize and accessorize, we’re all in sync. At this point, however, the largest marquee pieces of the design are finalized and I cannot wait for them to arrive in Brooklyn.

Thanks to Apt2B’s dope AF white glove delivery option, I can be in Washington state, choose the pieces, and have em delivered from their warehouse in Los Angeles, CA to Brooklyn, NY ready & waiting for me — and I’m not assembling a thing!

Talk about coast to coast!

I can’t wait to just get off the plane knowing that everything is there waiting for me… assembled… placed… ready to be styled!

Even though I am still working through some ideas, here’s the direction I want to take the design towards — again lots of cozy, tones & textures, while still allowing the hidden charm of the studio to shine through. She also has a fun collection of artwork from the Dominican Republic that I am really hoping we’ll be able to showcase in the transformation.

Going to High Point Market earlier this week, I was so inspired by all of the stylish small space trends that’ll be coming to the industry — it was like this Market was made for me, but more on that later! Inspired by everything I saw, it’s likely a lot will change but the foundation has at least been laid.

As with any design, armed with the floor plan, mood board, and concept renderings, both her and I can feel confident in the design direction the project is headed in. This time next week the Apt2B pieces will be at the end of their journey to the studio apartment and all the purging will have been completed!

If you haven’t been following along the entire One Room Challenge event, you’ll totes wanna come hang out with me on Instagram and follow all the participants — featured & guest — on the One Room Challenge blog

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Albie Knows