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Small Studio Apartment Ideas For Millennials (Shop The Look)

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Looking for small studio apartment ideas to make your place feel spacious? Check out this design that’s perfect for adulting millennials!

If you’re looking for ways to maximize the square footage in your studio apartment this post is for you. Starting with a small space is a great way to afford a place of your own.

While living at home has its perks there’s something to be said about the freedom and independence of having your apartment. Rent prices in many big cities have gone up so much that it’s now harder to find affordable options.

In NYC, some things can help make your dream of living in the city more attainable. Fourth-floor walkups, living outside affluent areas, and close to or on main streets can all reduce the cost.

The featured studio apartment meets all of the above criteria. That left more in the budget to spend on furniture and home decor.

Check this small studio apartment design for inspiration and ideas for your new space.

This post is all about small studio apartment ideas.

READ MORE>>> Home Design Inspiration On Inspired Design Talk

small studio apartment ideas with upholstered bed and wood desk

Small Studio Apartment Ideas To Maximize Space

To maximize the space in a small studio apartment do the following:

  1. Design with neutral colors
  2. Eliminate clutter
  3. Use small-scale furniture
  4. Define spaces with area rugs
  5. Keep the walls white
  6. Choose open-style furniture
  7. Incorporate mirrors
  8. Add shelving or multiple levels
  9. Place furniture against the wall
  10. Maximize storage in closets and under the bed
  11. Multi-functional furniture
  12. Layer in natural and artificial lighting

A studio apartment is worth it if you’re just starting out, need an affordable rental, or are living alone. The beauty of these spaces is they force you to be intentional with every piece you add.

There’s no room for hoarding when you live in a small space. You’ll also save on heating, electricity, and cooling costs because of the smaller square footage.

How do I make my small studio look good?

To make your studio apartment look good you’ll want to incorporate the basic design principles. The first step when designing any space is to measure and create a floor plan.

Once your measurements are in the next step is to create your furniture layout. After this is done find 3 images of how you want your space to look and feel.

Instagram, Pinterest, and Google are all great resources for inspiration for the vibe you’re after. Once you have this find a piece to use as your jumping-off point.

This can be a rug, artwork, or pillows to create the color palette. Neutrals are great for smaller spaces because it keeps them light and airy.

You can layer in a pop color or metallics for added interest. After you have the color palette choose the largest piece of furniture.

Update the floor plan with the actual measurements of the furniture you plan to purchase. Repeat this process for the other pieces until you have your entire space planned out.

Once you have all the furniture chosen make sure they fit into your budget. If you’re over find alternatives at a lower price point and swap them out.

Small Studio Apartment Layout Ideas

When creating the furniture layout for your small studio apartment design think about how you will use the space. If your job has gone remote you’ll need both a sleeping and work area.

While it’s not good Feng Shui to have your desk in the bedroom it may be unavoidable. If you’re able to create a work zone in the kitchen that would be better but if not you’ll have to work with what you have.

If possible you should have a space for relaxing and watching TV other than your bed. This will allow you to have company over without them chilling in your sleep space.

Remember you want your guests to be comfortable but not so much that they don’t want to leave!

As always start off by creating a flood plan for your space. Whether your room is small or large this is a must!

Once you have your measurements you’ll be able to order your furniture with confidence. This video will help you create a floor plan based on the measurements of your space.

Below is the furniture layout that was created for this small studio apartment design. Due to the location of the entryway, closet, and window, there was only one wall to put the bed against.

Once the sleep space was determined the next largest piece would be the sofa. The ideal spot for that was in the opposite corner so the spaces could be kept separate.

small studio apartment ideas bedroom floor plan

Adding the desk in the corner allowed the TV to be mounted above on a swivel which helped to maximize the space. Next to the sofa is a beverage fridge and wine storage rack that creates an area designated for entertaining.

There was enough room in this studio apartment for a coffee table in front of the sofa which serves a dual purpose. The lift mechanism is ideal for an alternate work zone or eating area when it’s closed.

Even though there’s a separate kitchen having a place to eat while watching TV is required for most millennial spaces. Just saying!

Shop The Look Design Ideas

small studio apartment ideas neutral color scheme bedroom

This post may contain affiliate links, which means that if you make a purchase, I might make a small commission at no extra charge to you. Please read my full disclosure here. As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases.

1. Nectar Bed Frame With Headboard // 2. Nectar Memory Foam Mattress // 3. Faux Fur Pillow // 4. Fuzzy Faux Fur Pillow // 5. Navy Blue Lumbar Pillow // 6. Round End Table // 7. Crown Abstract Canvas Wall Art // 8. Abstract Runner Rug // 9. Mid-Century Modern Sofa // 10. Gallery Wall Set Printable // 10b. Black Frame Set // 11. Lift Top Coffee Table // 12. Grey Faux Fur Rug // 13. L-Shaped Desk with Hutch // 14. Black Faux Leather Chair // 15. Wine Bakers Rack // 16. Beverage Refrigerator // 17. Amazon Smart TV // 18. Bar Table Set // 19. Hanging Plant // 20. Grey Duck Down Comforter // 21. Space Dyed Cotton Linen Comforter

1. Nectar Bed Frame With Headboard

small studio apartment ideas upholstered bed

The Nectar bed with headboard is a great investment for anyone just starting out or on a budget. It’s available in gray or linen beige and is the perfect neutral foundation for any bedroom design.

For just under $500 you can purchase the queen-sized bed on sale right now. It has a button-tufted upholstered headboard and a timeless design that’ll last for many years to come.

2. Nectar Memory Foam Mattress

memory foam mattress

This is the exact mattress that was purchased with the nectar frame above. It’s 12″ high and has single-action cooling for a comfortable night’s sleep.

For those in a rush, this mattress will ship within 2-4 days of placing your order which is fabulous. You can save 33% off with the Holiday Sale happening right now.

The Nectar is perfect for smart shoppers on a fixed budget. There’s also the mid-range Nectar Premier or high-end Copper to choose from as well.

3. Faux Fur Pillow

faux fur pillow

To add interest in small spaces you’ll want to layer in texture and dimension. This faux fur pillow has a subtle pattern in the hi-lo faux fur material.

The charcoal color pairs perfectly with the other neutral elements in this small studio apartment design. It’s awesome for both the bed and couch.

4. Fuzzy Faux Fur Pillow

Fuzzy Faux Fur Pillow

This light gray faux fur pillow is great for the center of the bed with charcoal pillows on either side. When designing with neutrals you can create balance and interest by using tints, shades, and tones of similar colors.

5. Navy Blue Lumbar Pillow

Navy Blue Lumbar Pillow

For a pop of color, navy blue was added to the center of the bed with this lumbar pillow. To balance out the color scheme blue is also found in the area rug and accessories in the room.

The texture of the corduroy pattern creates a focal point in the center of the bed and draws the eye inward.

6. Round End Table

Round End Table

Rather than add a traditional nightstand this side table keeps the space light and airy. It’s great for adding a book, small lamp, or drink before bed.

The bottom shelf can store decor or books depending on your storage needs. Adding an accent table makes the area feel less like a bedroom and more like a casual living space.

7. Crown Abstract Canvas Wall Art

graffitti artwork

When it comes to small studio apartment decor I have found it best to start with a neutral base and then layer in texture and color. Since most millennials are not about colorful spaces this approach will allow you to add color later if you want a change.

Starting a design with a jumping-off point such as the above graffiti artwork gives you colors to pull into your design. This art was so popular it was sold out but it’s back in stock.

The fun print is awesome small studio wall art because it has an edge with the torn paper and a cool graffiti vibe. This piece looks even better in person than the image online.

8. Small Studio Apartment Abstract Runner Rug

Abstract Runner Rug

Instead of adding a large area rug, a runner was placed next to the bed. The reason being the full-size rug under the bed would extend into the desk area.

That would make the desk chair half on and half off which is not ideal. The other reason is the majority of the rug would be under the bed except for about 2 feet next to the bed.

That’s a waste of so the runner was the better option for this space. The faux fur rug is layered on top of the runner but it’s great for in front of the sofa too.

small studio apartment ideas with upholstered bed

Sitting Area Small Studio Apartment Ideas

9. Mid-Century Modern Sofa

mid century modern sofa

Use furniture on a smaller scale to make your studio apartment appear larger. This mid-century modern sofa is 71.2″ wide by 30.7″ deep which is perfect.

It has three high-density foam seat cushions, scooped arms, and solid wooden legs. There is some assembly required which is why the price is so low.

This exact sofa was purchased for the featured NYC apartment space so we’ll keep you updated on how it holds up. So far it is the perfect size and fit the budget beautifully as well.

10. Gallery Wall Set Printable

basquiat print set printables

To save some dinero this set of three printables will be added to the 20×30″ frames below. For just under $100 it’s an affordable option to add over the sofa.

It’s by the same artist as the crown art over the bed. The center dinosaur Basquiat print even has a matching crown.

This artwork is great to use as a jumping-off point to add a pop of color. The bold design will make a statement in any space it’s in.

10b. Black Frame Set

Black Frame Set

If you’re on a budget you can save money by buying printable artwork and adding it to frames purchased separately. This set of three is just under $85 which is perfect for anyone just starting out.

There are multiple sizes available depending on the look you’re after. For this design, the black frames tie back to the other elements in the space but the natural wood looks awesome too.

11. Lift Top Coffee Table

Lift Top Coffee Table

The lift top design provides a surface area high enough to work or eat instead of having to be in the kitchen. It’s great for when you want to watch TV or have friends over.

This table is also available in five other finishes depending on the look of your design.

12. Grey Faux Fur Rug

Grey Faux Fur Rug

There are so many ways to style this cozy faux fur accent rug. It’s great to layer over the runner rug or in front of the sofa for a cozy place to put your feet.

It can even be placed across the seat of the sofa to add texture and create a focal point.

When you have a small space adding multi-purpose furniture like this lift coffee table is ideal. It has a mid-century silhouette with storage on the shelves and the center of the table.

13. L-Shaped Desk with Hutch

wood l shaped desk with hutch

A corner desk is great to maximize every inch in a small studio apartment design. This wood and metal desk has plenty of surface area and a hutch with shelving.

It’s awesome for displaying your favorite books, memorabilia, and home decor. The sturdy metal frame is durable and built to last.

Just remember to measure your space before you order to make sure it’ll fit. Go by the saying measure twice and order once!

14. Black Faux Leather Chair

Black Faux Leather Chair

A small-scale chair is another way to save on space in your studio apartment design. This chair has a contemporary silhouette and modern design.

The traditional office chair on wheels takes up more space which is not ideal for studio apartments. Since this chair doesn’t have arms it can easily be pushed in and tucked away under the desk when not in use.

15. Wine Bakers Rack

Wine Bakers Rack

A wine baker’s rack is awesome for displaying wine and other beverages so you’re ready to entertain. This piece has multi-tiers for added interest and style.

The wood and metal silhouette ties back to the style of the other furniture in the room. It has a top rack for displaying wine glasses while the bottom area will hold up to 12 wine bottles

Add your favorite bar accessories and decor to the shelves so you are ready to get the party started!

16. Beverage Refrigerator

Beverage Refrigerator

The beverage cooler in the featured studio apartment is Heineken branded but this one is a similar scale. Since the typical fridge in an apartment is usually smaller in size having a separate one for drinks is great.

Not to mention it’ll be at arms reach during the game so there will be no need to get up and miss the action. This beverage fridge will hold up to 12 cans which is awesome for small spaces.

This is one of my favorite small studio apartment ideas!

17. Amazon Smart TV

Amazon Smart TV

To save on space the TV was mounted on the wall opposite the bed. It’s attached to the swivel mount below so it can be turned to pivot towards the direction of the sofa.

Hanging the TV this way makes it super easy to view from any area of the small studio apartment. The beauty of the Smart TV is it comes preloaded with Netflix, Prime Video, Disney+, and more.

There’s no need to purchase a separate firestick which makes this TV super convenient.

17b. Amazon Swivel TV Wall Mount

Swivel TV Wall Mount

This swivel TV wall mount is fabulous for hanging your TV on the wall. It’s easy to install and comes with a bubble level to make sure the TV is mounted straight.

Where should I put my TV in my studio apartment?

The best place to hang your TV in a studio apartment is typically in a corner or on a pivot wall mount. Doing so will enable you to view it from any location in the room.

For the featured bedroom design, the TV was placed on the wall opposite the bed. The pivot wall mount makes it easy to pull out on an angle so it can also be viewed while sitting on the sofa.

18. Bar Table Set

Bar Table Set

Most studio apartment spaces do not have large kitchen areas. This NYC rental has a galley-style kitchen that’s about 6′ x 10′ which is not large.

The ideal amount of space you should have for traffic flow is 3 feet. In this kitchen, there are about 4 feet of space between the edge of the counter and the wall.

The bar table set above is about 16″ wide which would leave a little over 2 feet of space to pass by. It’s not ideal but is manageable.

Adding the bar table set will be an additional place to eat or do work. It’ll also provide an additional surface area which is always needed in smaller apartments.

18b. Small Dining Table Set

Small Dining Table Set

If you prefer more of a sit-down situation this small dining table set is another fabulous option. The set comes complete with the table and chairs.

It’s available in multiple finishes and styles making it awesome for any style of living space. Having the two extra chairs is a bonus when friends are over since you can easily move them into the main area.

You may not plan on entertaining a lot but having the option for more seating will be a blessing when you do. Another option is to use one of the chairs for the desk area. When needed you’ll have two to use for dining in the kitchen.

The best thing to do when thinking of small studio apartment ideas is to have multiple functions for each piece of furniture. If you’re intentional with your purchases you’ll need less but it’ll go further.

19. Small Studio Apartment Hanging Plant

Hanging Plant

Adding greenery to your small studio apartment is great for oxygen, sleeping, and productivity. Anytime you can bring the outdoors in it’ll be beneficial for your health and well-being.

If you don’t have a green thumb (like me) no worries just go for the artificial plants. The look will be similar and you won’t have to worry about the upkeep of the real deal.

20. Grey Duck Down Comforter

Grey Duck Down Comforter

This is the exact comforter in the featured design. It’s plush, comfortable, and warm. The heat in this apartment happens to be very good but some landlords are stingy with the temperature.

If you’re dealing with that situation you’ll want this duck-down comforter for your apartment.

21. Space Dyed Cotton Linen Comforter

duvet set

Be sure to protect your down comforter with a duvet cover. My style of choice is one with a zipper closure instead of buttons.

This one has a neutral space dye pattern that’ll add texture and dimension to your bedding decor. It pairs perfectly with the throw pillows and blanket at the foot of the bed.

I hope these small studio apartment design ideas inspire you to create the space of your dreams!

This post is all about small studio apartment ideas.

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Last Updated on December 11, 2023 by Nicole DelaCruz

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