Camouflage KitchenTo all those aghast observers who ask, "Why live there?" find how these homeowners answer "Why not?" Discover a spectacular small flat in London, behold a brightly designed space in New York, meet creative architects in Seattle and tour an elegant New York studio.
Notting Hill Flat
Amelia Dare moved into her London apartment and was faced with a rundown, 'revolting' flat. So, she called in an architect and started over. For instance, now she boasts a most unique bathroom pod. Recessed lighting along the bottom edge creates an ethereal floating cube effect. Inside a discotheque experience awaits: The interior is white corian that reflects the color-changing lights installed throughout the bathroom.
Dare wanted an open kitchen along one wall in the studio. She chose an all white kitchen so it would blend into the space and not look like a kitchen. To the left of the cabinets, she installed a floor-to-ceiling mirror—another simple trick to increase light and the sense of space.
That's a Lot of DrawerNumerous small drawers can visually clutter a kitchen. Try a few larger drawers when you want a more seamless look. The large drawers in Dare's kitchen provide easy access to frequently used items.
A Deal with the ArchitectDare loves to read and display books, but her architect thought it would look too pretentious in this space. So they compromised.
Gallery for GaneshaBright Design
When Suraj Bhatia moved into his 415-square-foot efficiency, he made it a primary goal to liven up the space with brightly colored accessories. Although he loves the clean lines of the modern aesthetic, his Indian heritage provides an appreciation for bright colors and patterns. The result is an eclectic mix of textured ethnic items and smooth reflective surfaces, which create a dynamic environment.
The bold red color on the far wall draws the eye into the room. Painting only one wall a bold color doesn't overwhelm the small space. The brightly colored prints from India along the white wall add contrast.
Mirror, Mirror on the WallBhatia sections off the bedroom space with a sheer curtain, which still lets light through to the rest of the apartment. A modern translucent screen is another excellent choice for partitioning off rooms. On an existing mirrored wall, Bhatia stuck different sized ovals to the surface to make it more interesting to look at; it gives the eye something to focus on. On another existing mirror across from it, he used a paint to frost the mirror. It still gives light reflection, but tones down too many mirrors in a small space.
Architects Robert Humble and Joel Egan proposed "Cargotecture" for the redevelopment of the Seattle waterfront area. An abundance of shipping cargo containers gave them the idea for incremental urban develop. Cargo container homes recycle an existing structure, can be quickly installed, easily removed and used again elsewhere when the lot is ready for more substantial development. They developed Studio 320 as their experimental architecture lab.
A laboratory in sustainability and experimental architecture, Studio 320 is a stylish studio apartment that is made from two shipping containers.
What's Your Roof Doing for You?This roof has three distinct work areas. The rocks collect rainwater that is channeled to two large plastic rain barrels. These provide enough running water for the shower, the sinks and the toilet. The green roof provides thermal mass and insulation for the structure and a habitat for other species in the area.
Contained LivingThree quarters of the space is a great room that incorporates a kitchen. The remaining quarter is used as a small sleeping area and bathroom. The shower isn't contained in a stall and the whole bathroom floor drains water; this is a popular new concept called a wet room. The studio is currently used as a weekend retreat. When the front door is open, there is a 12-foot-wide opening to the deck.
Luxury Hotel Living at HomeElegant Studio
Adrian Gilbey knew the design of his studio had to multifunction. But he didn't want it to be the kind of place where a bed flipped out of a wall and a coffee maker flipped out from under the bed. That just doesn't suit how he lives. Instead, he surrounds himself with elegant items that are purposeful and lives a luxury hotel lifestyle with abandon.
A chic mixture of vintage, antique and contemporary items collected from around the world sets a stylish tone. An 18th century writing desk provides space for showcasing his collections and doubles as a dining room table where he and friends enjoy 'room service' (takeout food) served on fine china and glassware. Even his paint color multi-functions: a rich taupe that is light in the day and dark and sexy at night. The whole apartment is painted in this color.
Bedroom BlingGilbey placed mirrored screens in the corners of the bedroom space to soften the edges and give visual interest. Adding elements that bounce light around is important in a small space. The more matte objects you put in a room, the smaller it will feel.