Interior designer and Brooklyn resident, Alex Kalita, knows a thing or two about renovating spaces. But designing her own apartment proved to be quite a challenge. From limited square footage to a lease with little wiggle room, there was only so much Alex could do to revitalize her home.

Back in August, we talked to Alex, co-founder of Common Bond Design, on how she handled her lease’s strict floor stipulations when designing her rental apartment, but now Alex is sharing the rest of her apartment makeover. Find some interior design inspiration with her tips from Architectural Digest below:

Smart Use of Space

New York City apartments and urban apartments in general are infamous for their limited floor space. Restricted to around 600 square feet for her whole home, Alex knew she would have to get creative if she was to maximize her home’s potential. One of the ways Alex looked to maximize space without sacrificing functionality, Alex started shopping for a European stove. Not only did the stove fit perfectly, but it also arrived ahead of American stove competitors saving valuable time.

 

If you’re struggling to make use of your apartment’s small kitchen, try taking a page out of Alex’s book by shopping for European appliances which are typically smaller. In addition, you can look for clever furniture items that serve dual purposes or have multiple functions. For example, a desk that can also fold into a dining room table.

 

The bottom line: Fill your home with pieces that take advantage of your limited space and don’t waste the precious square footage their given.

Keep It Original

Apartment buildings typically have a distinct style or aesthetic that makes them unique. For example, you might have exposed brick, vaulted ceilings, ornate molding, or industrial chic ductwork that give your apartment a one-of-a-kind vibe. Alex’s apartment, for example, had 20th century fixtures like hardwood floors, industrial doors, and metallic radiators. And instead of covering up this unique vintage look, Alex opted to leave her radiators and doors in their original state.

The bottom line: Highlight the elements of your apartment that make it unique.

 

Creative and Efficient Lighting

 

Considering apartments are usually one unit in a larger home or apartment building, east and west facing windows can be scarce. This means natural light and brightness are a highly sought-after resource. And while you absolutely cannot install more windows into your apartment (hello, construction costs), you can install new light fixtures and white decorations to brighten up your apartment.

 

Make your apartment a brighter place to live by adding white tile, counters, cabinets, tables, or even just a light wall color. This way the natural light you are getting in your apartment is reflected throughout your home. In addition, make sure your windows aren’t obstructed by furniture, heavy drapes, or blinds to maximize your potential natural light.

 

The bottom line: Lacking natural light? Bring the light into your home with new light fixtures and bright décor.

Need More Interior Design Inspiration?

 

For more makeover inspiration like Alex’s, check out these three room makeovers from interior designers that are sure to inspire.