3 of our favourite small spaces and what we can learn from them.
Spending more time at home is something we've all been faced with recently and it's got us thinking about how to make the most of our spaces. We stumbled across the YouTube channel "Never Too Small" and it's given us some fantastic ideas for utilising our spaces better and making them more functional.
As populations continue to rise, it's going to become more and more important to figure out effective ways of living in smaller spaces. The videos in this post go to show that it's possible if you just think a little outside the box.
These are our favourite small spaces and what we think makes them special...
The Cairo Flat - 23m2
The Cairo Flat was designed in 1936 with the aim of creating maximum amenity in the minimum footprint. The apartment is North facing which allows for a lot of great natural light but there are a number of other clever things going on that really help make this small space feel bigger.
High ceilings (check out the detailing at the point where the walls meet the ceiling too) and a large window leading into a green outdoor space are really effective ways of creating the feeling of space and airiness.
"Ensure that everything is performing multiple functions"
In the video architect Michael Roper notes that when designing a small space you should ensure that everything is performing multiple functions. Look out for his footrest which acts as a seat, footrest and also something he can stand on to reach objects on his ceiling height shelving.
We love the idea of giving careful consideration to the things we bring into our lives and this tip is one we'd recommend extending to larger homes too.
The Sydney Art Studio
Built in 1960, this apartment in a 3 storey walk-up is a great example of a small space designed without "minimalism" in mind. The owner has no interest in reductivism and made it clear to his architects that he'd continue to collect things, so storage was a huge focus. A few very clever design choices meant that this 43m2 residence could comfortably fit an art studio, sleeping space and tons of storage.
By creating a large storage pod instead of a partition wall the designers were able to create somewhere for the owner to store clothing, general bits and bobs, laundry, art supplies and a niche for creating art. It has been clad in mirrored gold which helps amplify the effect of the owner's greenery and also makes the interior feel larger.
(Tip : Mirrors or mirrored fronts wardrobe are a great way to make your room feel larger)
We love the clever use of a pull-out bed (located in the central storage pod) in this apartment. Coupled with a beautiful ceiling-to-floor curtain it creates what is in effect, a second bedroom - perfect for hosting guests.
If you've not got space for both a sofa and a bedroom in your studio space, a sofa bed can be a great way of doubling up one item to make the most of your interior. A sofa bed in any lounge area is a great way to create additional sleeping space for guests, even in bigger homes.
Type Street Apartment
This 1970s Melbournes apartment is a great example of designing specifically to create a living and home office in the same space. With subtle, well-conceived alterations, the architect/owner has transformed this 35m2 apartment into a functional space that works for him.
We love how the working space folds away when not in use and how the same area adapts to allow a TV to expose itself when required. It also acts as an ingenious storage space for some foldable stools that are used in the dining are, which is also hidden when not in use.
"You've got to know your lifestyle. So what's important for you?"
The owner, Jack Chen has made some incredibly efficient choices with furniture too - see his office chair that doubles as a lounge chair. The main point Jack makes is that when designing a small space it's key to know your own lifestyle and carefully consider what your needs are.
We highly recommend checking out "Never Too Small" on Youtube because there are tons of really interesting spaces that really highlight the ingenuity of architects, designers and small homeowners.
You can watch "Never Too Small" here.
Header image credit : Never Too Small