How do you create more room when you can’t expand your floor plan? The inventive bedroom boxes below crack the code.
Architect Rebal Knayzeh and his wife loved their 1000-square-foot, open-plan loft in San Francisco, but as their newborn grew into a toddler and his toy collection swelled accordingly, they became pressed for more space. After weighing the cost of relocating against that of adding square feet, Knayzeh devised a clever solution in the form of a hybrid "cabinet room." The 75-square-foot cube creates a bedroom for the child and entertainment space for the adults—as well as much-needed storage space for everyone.
After buying a worn-down, 244-square-foot apartment in the 10th arrondissement of Paris, the owner Achille—a young bachelor—stripped away the wallpaper, hauled in his temporary furniture, and spent a couple months living in the small space to let it guide the design direction. After some time, he envisioned a renovation with space-saving solutions that would retain and celebrate the rough-hewn character of the original apartment. He enlisted the help of French architecture and interior design practice Batiik Studio to bring his ideas to life.
Following a renovation by New York's Framework Architecture, a wall running the length of a small Prospect Heights studio provides generous storage and display space. The slatted wood wall runs the entire length of the 450-square-foot studio, beginning in the entryway. Further along, the wall opens to accommodate a refrigerator and clothes storage. Conceived as an extension of the wall, the bedroom presents the client with his possessions, souvenirs, and artwork at the start and end of each day.
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Located in the suburb of Richmond in Melbourne, Australia, Coppin Street Apartments consists of five one-bedroom units and one two-bedroom unit with a unified facade—all of which look and feel a lot bigger than their size might suggest. Housed in a 1960s freestanding brick building, these walk-up apartments—often referred to as "six-packs"—were reinterpreted by Australian practice MUSK Architecture Studio, who transformed them into stylish modern dwellings where every square foot is put to good use.
Aubrey Ament and Will Glaser, the couple behind multidisciplinary design studio GLAM, moved from Portland, Oregon, into a sunny loft in Brooklyn with their two dogs, but the 920-square-foot space needed definite work. In addition to storage, the home needed separation between living and sleeping spaces—but also to steer clear of extraneous interior partitions. Up for the challenge was architect Brandon Dean, founder of Brooklyn–based Dean Works. Dean worked with Ament, who has a background in industrial and product design, and Glaser, whose background is in furniture making, to develop a concept that combined the need for storage and separation into one unit. Inspiration for the "storage wall" came from the clients’ birch plywood dining table, which they’d designed and built previously, which has two large circles cut out of both ends. The same birch plywood makes up the custom kitchen cabinetry, creating continuity in the material and color palette.
In February of 2007, Jeff Wardell and Claudia Sagan purchased a 3,200-square-foot former Chinese laundry and tooth-powder factory in lower Pacific Heights. As a former VP of real estate for Williams-Sonoma, "Claudia knew right away it had excellent bones," says Wardell, a former financial advisor. The travelers also loved how the 127-foot-long loft seemed to stretch out to the horizon. Where some might box the cavernous space into cozier rooms, Wardell and Sagan wanted "to celebrate that length," Sagan says. To showcase the art and maximize daylight, they decided to situate the master bedroom at the back, away from the street, but keep everything else open, with a central kitchen and living room and a den facing the street. The next question was, "how do we make a home office and a guest bedroom happen without cluttering the space?" Sagan says. After considering plunking the interior compartment of a Pullman train car in the middle of the apartment, they landed on shipping containers.
Broadview Loft is a minimalist interior located in Toronto, Canada, designed by Studio AC. The architects were tasked in designing an apartment for a young professional who was looking for something fun, functional, and unique. The bedroom is partitioned off in a simplified Moroccan style archway that can be opened up or closed off using curtains. The nook is slightly elevated, creating an inconspicuous separation from the rest of the space.
In 2012, entrepreneur Graham Hill moved into a 420-square-foot SoHo studio that would act as his personal residence and a showcase for a movement. "I wanted to start a conversation about how doing more with less could improve our lives from an environmental, financial, and even emotional perspective," he explains. Graham, who is the founder of eco-blog Treehugger.com and other online ventures, turned to the Internet for ideas, partnering with crowdstorming platform Jovoto to launch an international competition to design the space. Out of 297 entries, the winning submission, authored by two Romanian architecture students, promised the functionality of an area more than twice the apartment’s size, thanks to a fluid layout, a custom moving wall, and transformable furniture.
If you're on the hunt for a quirky place to stay the next time you're in Berlin, the city's hip Michelberger Hotel has you covered. Housed in a converted 20th-century factory building, this family-fun hotel has long been a favorite of travelers and art enthusiasts for its design-led rooms and cozy, home-away-from-home atmosphere. While the entire 110-room hotel boasts character, it's Room 304 that people can't seem to get enough of. Designed by Danish architect Sigurd Larsen, this self-contained suite features a wooden playhouse-like volume, guaranteed to ignite guests' sense of exploration and imagination.
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For the annual architecture, interior design, and landscaping design showcase CASACOR in São Paulo, architects were posed with the challenge of creating interiors within the Jockey Club de São Paulo, a heritage equestrian club.For his part, architect Nildo José transformed an 860-square-foot loft, dubbed Loft Ninho, into a warm, welcoming hideaway. The firm enveloped the ceiling, walls, and floor in European oak and nested an en suite bedroom in a ceramic-tiled cube. An indoor garden, accessible by a steel ladder, caps it all.
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