Monday, May 23, 2016

A 300 Sq Ft Apartment in the Lower East Side

Over the past 10 months of residing in New York,  I've become fascinated with watching design-conscious apartment dwellers take a small space and turn it in to a place they can call home.  As I struggle to arrange and then rearrange my own 100 sq-ft bedroom and make it a space I feel good about,  I love reading stories and seeing "before" and "after" photographs of small-space transitions.  One stylish New York apartment I recently came across is shared by two best friends from Austin-  Dustin O'Neal and Valerie Nguyen.  They both moved to New York after graduating from the University of Texas and chose to settle in to a small, 300 sq-ft Lower East Side apartment.  The space has 2 bedrooms and 1 tiny kitchen that they share.   As you can see from the photos, the apartment is TINY, yet every inch has been carefully considered and designed with an effortless, Austin-Texas vibe:

When Nguyen and O'Neal moved in, the space was a white box.  They picked a daring paint color, Behr's Dark Cavern, for the kitchen cabinetry and walls.  While traditionally dark colors are thought to make a space feel smaller, in this case it gave the kitchen definition, and both feel that when light trickles in the darker color actually makes the space feel larger. 

2 serape rugs found in El Paso, Texas, are layered on the floor underneath the kitchen table.  2 folding chairs Hunter found at a Design on a Dime event serve as table seating.  The  chairs can easily be carried upstairs to their rooftop terrace overlooking the city.

Hunter's room is my favorite of the 3 spaces.  As a PR agent for architects and designers, he was able to call in a few favors from his friends to keep the cost down.  The geometric wallpaper on the ceiling is by Black Crow Studios, and Hunter paired it with a sultry mauve wall color.  Artwork he's collected over the years hangs on the wall, and the tartan lumbar pillow fabric is by Ronda Carmen Fine Fabrics.

O'Neal chose a large mirror to sit above his dresser in order to create a larger sense of space:

Nguyen's room features a sexy faux bois wallpaper by Innovations, a desk chair from LexMod, and a sheepskin rug from Sam's Club.  

Valerie and Hunter's budget-conscious apartment exudes beautiful design, quirky details, and conversation-starting elements that create a unique place to call home, right in the heart of the Lower East Side.   I've never seen 300 square feet look so good!

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