There’s no question that crafting the perfect studio apartment design can be a serious challenge. You’re working with a small space that needs to serve multiple needs, from sleeping to lounging to sometimes even doing actual work.

Additionally, you still want to show off your personal style while creating a functional, livable space. From bringing in space-saving furniture to sneaking in storage, we’ve rounded up our best tips for making the most out of your studio apartment. Read on for our expert ideas and see how to bring them home.

1. Use the Vertical Space

Don’t have square footage to spare? Make the most of your vertical wall space! Specifically, sneaking in additional storage is a great way to maximize your vertical space, be it a tall open bookcase or a system of mounted shelves and wall hooks. The trick is to add as much storage as you can while taking up as little floor space as possible.

You’ll also want to look for ways to replace what you already have, such as subbing a nightstand for a bookcase, which provides the same function but gives you four times the storage space. A win-win for any studio apartment design!

Explore our complete guide to small apartment furniture.

2. Embrace Clear Furniture and Mirrors

Because studios are small by nature, it helps to have a few tricks to make them seem more open. One way to do that is to work in mirrors and clear furniture, which will minimize the overall visual clutter.

Mirrors have the added advantage of bouncing light around and they’ll play up the illusion that your studio is more spacious than it seems. Whereas clear furnishings will add to the spacious vibe by making your studio feel lighter and more open.

studio apartment design3. Put Your Walls to Work

Just like vertical storage, use your walls for other functions like lighting. Mounted lights as well as swivel sconces not only provide ample lighting, they also free up floor space and they have a chic and stylish look that really elevates any small studio apartment design.

Another trick we love for our vertical wall space? Hanging plants from the ceiling, which adds instant color and life to a small space.

studio apartment design4. Opt for Leggy Furniture

Bulky furniture that sits low to the ground will make an already small space feel even smaller and more cramped. Instead, pick furniture perched on tall, skinny legs that provide a more open and uncluttered look in your studio apartment. Case in point: This chair, bed frame, and nightstand all have open bases that lend an airy look to tiny space.

Explore our complete guide to small bedroom design tips.

studio apartment design5. Break Up the Space

Finding the right layout for a studio is probably THE major struggle for most small-space dwellers. And it’s easy to see why. You’re trying to fit so many functions into one room, and it can be hard to break up your space to serve multiple purposes.

To solve this conundrum, start by doing what you can to “zone” your studio space and create distinct living and sleeping areas. For instance, using a dresser or a piece of furniture to physically divide the space is one way to delineate different areas. Or try laying down rugs, which can really help create visual distinctions.

studio apartment design6. Sneak In Storage

You already know that storage is at a premium in studios. Work with what you’ve got and sneak it in where you can instead of adding more bulky pieces into your furniture mix.

One of our favorite smart storage solutions is stowing things away in baskets under the bed. It’s the best way to make the most of an area that would otherwise be dead space. Also look for two-in-one storage furniture, like a coffee table with secret compartments, a desk with cubbies, and a nightstand with drawers, all of which will let you stow away a lot more than you think!

studio apartment design


7. Think Multi-Purpose Everything

In addition to sneaking in extra storage, go for multi-purpose pieces in your design. A bookcase that doubles as a room divider? Yes, please! It’s all about getting creative with your furnishings.

Think poufs that can double for side tables, a desk that also functions as a nightstand, or a dresser that’s also your TV stand. You want to get more function out of the few pieces you have in your apartment, so wherever you can double dip, do it!

8. Make the Most of Every Space

Finally, if you already have your furniture but just need to figure out a better way to use your space, find clever uses for your nooks and crannies. There’s not a square foot to lose!

Make use of every space, including underneath other things—tuck baskets under a console table, poufs under a bench or coffee table. The idea is to push things together in a way that’s smart and stylish and leaves you with more room for additional practical accent furniture and walking space throughout.

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4 replies
  1. rachel frampton says:

    My dad would like to have his apartment renovated because it looks dull, which is why he would like to hire the best contractors. Thank you for suggesting here that it would be best to add some mirrors that will make space look bigger. It’s also a good thing that you clarified here the advantage of having vertical wall space.

  2. samreen akhtar says:

    It’s interesting to learn that mirrors can make a room feel larger. My wife and I are moving into an apartment soon and we were wondering how we can make our living room appear larger than it is. I’ll be sure to tell her that we should add big mirrors into the living room.

  3. Afton Jackson says:

    I loved your tips and examples on how to sneak in storage for an apartment. Apartments are known for being very cramped, and I wanted to make sure that I don’t have to experience that when I start living in one while saving money for my first house. With that in mind, I’ll make sure I look for multi-purpose storage furniture I can use before I start browsing for apartment listings. Thank you!


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