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a home + living guide for the post-college, pre-parenthood, quasi-adult generation


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big ideas for small spaces
who says size matters?
by Susan Johnston | 1 2 3
continued from page 1

Now onto that kitchenette. Check on what appliances are included (and how much counter space you have) before you buy anything extra. If you can’t live without your coffee maker and Cuisinart, then look for smaller models instead of the one that brews enough coffee for a small army. Once you move into a bigger place, you can buy that super-deluxe caterers’ version and resell your pint-sized appliances to some other sucker in a studio.

If you’re short on cabinet space, then put up wall hooks for your pots, pans, and other cooking accoutrements. This makes it easy to find everything you need for dinner instead of rummaging around in the drawers and cabinets. It also gives your kitchen a real gourmet cook’s decor, which you can play up with some fancy bottles of olive oil and spices.

And lastly, the bathroom. You’re lucky if you have a full-sized bathtub, but a shower caddy or a shelf in the corner can maximize space in even the tiniest tub. Removable shelving over the toilet is great for bathrooms with zero storage space.

the situation | That cozy, but cute, studio fell through, and now you’re stuck squatting on your best friend’s brother’s coworker’s couch.

the solution | Depending on how long you plan to live in limbo (or if you’re sharing a one-bedroom in Manhattan, it might be a long-term living situation), you may or may not want to invest too much time and effort in decorating. Then again, you don’t want to be constantly reminded of your squatter status by the pile of clothes draped over a suitcase and boxes in the corner. Do yourself a favor and throw a funky piece of fabric over those boxes. If they’re sturdy, they can serve as a makeshift table. Stack a few plastic crates next to your bed/couch for an instant nightstand/shelf unit. Remember that futon you bought? It fits perfectly into this new set-up: couch by day and bed by night. Put a few plastic crates under the bed with extra clothes, and you’re good to go.

If the room is big enough and you’d like some privacy, buy a folding screen to partition off your sleeping area from the rest of the room. You can also reposition the screen to block any unsightly piles of clothes and other messes. But for roommates who enjoy late-night movies or Playstation in your “bedroom,” the only solution I can suggest is earplugs.

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