Essential Design Tips for Small Apartments in NYC

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NYC has some beautiful spaces to rent. Many of them put you right in the city’s heart, allowing you to find a great job or have your family near the best schools.

The only trouble is that these spaces tend to be tiny. Small apartments in NYC are part of the usual routine. Many live in studios or one-bedrooms, trying to count every square foot.

Although your space might be small, these design tips can help you maximize what is possible while keeping your costs low. 

What Are the Best Design Tips for Small Apartments in NYC?

The lack of space in a tiny NYC apartment will always be a challenge. You’ll need to commit to your spatial dynamics to make things work. The priority should be to create storage solutions to ensure clutter doesn’t feel overwhelming. 

You can make the overall experience feel successful when combined with minimal living. Here are some decorating options that strive to achieve that goal.

1. Entry Storage

Flat, empty surfaces tend to be catch-all places of leftover things. People toss their keys, coats, mail, and anything else in their hands onto these surfaces. The intention is to put everything away later, but that time never seems to arrive.

Use entry décor in your NYC apartment to avoid this mess. For example, you can organize your essential items by placing hooks and baskets near the doorway. Even a simple floating shelf installation can accomplish a lot.

2. Review Your Layout

When living in a tiny NYC apartment, it helps to be mindful of your furniture layout. One of your best options is to design with an eye toward the ceiling. For example, a loft-style structure can divide areas of the home while providing options underneath for kitchens, offices, or storage.

Place furniture so that it offers an open layout. If everything is clumped together, the space will feel closed and tight.

Folding screens can divide your bedroom in a studio apartment from the rest of the living space. 

3. Make It Compact

Life in a tiny NYC apartment requires clever use of your furniture assets. You’ll eliminate many of your spatial issues when you have pieces that offer dual functions. For example, combine this technique with more mirrors to make the room feel larger while using minimalist materials and slim or streamlined designs to keep the spaces serene, clean, and functional.

4. Think About the Bed

Life in a tiny apartment means your bedroom must receive as much attention as the other spaces in your home. A king-sized mattress will take up a lot of space. Do you want to sacrifice the open areas to have a spot that supports your sleep habits?

Instead of a standard bed, consider having a folding sofa bed or a daybed for your apartment. These options create more space, incorporate dual functionality, and can be as comfortable as other choices.

If you prefer maximum space, a Murphy bed is a go-to solution in NYC apartments. In addition, you can find choices with built-in desks, closets, and shelves.

5. Use Curtains Wisely

One of the best ways to maximize your style in a small apartment is to use curtains liberally. It’s a non-permanent and inexpensive way to distinguish different spaces in the home. For example, cotton or linen panels work better for the bedroom, while darker drapes can let you create a quiet reading area. 

If you don’t like using curtains, there are non-fabric options to consider. You can hang wooden beads, use bookshelves as dividers, or even add window panes to create your desired style while living in NYC.

6. Keep the Colors Light

Most small NYC apartments use light color schemes with lots of natural light because that combination makes the space feel open and inviting. Darker hues tend to cause studios and one-bedrooms to become closed, even claustrophobic. Use different pops of color from houseplants, rugs, or even throw pillows to show off your design and style.

If you love having dark colors in your apartment, consider using them as accents instead of the primary hue. More than half of the incorporated elements should be lighter to ensure the right tones are selected. 

Designing spaces to love while living in a tiny NYC apartment can feel challenging, but it can be successful when proceeding with a purpose. You can experiment with these options, combine them, or take your approach to create the perfect home. In addition, if you need help with any installation work, our team can be there to lend a hand!


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