Whether it’s making room for your new juicer or figuring out how to pack another child into a bedroom, New Yorkers are constantly space-challenged. We sat down with Challie Stillman, the Design Director at Resource Furniture, a company that specializes in modern space-saving furniture, to get “living solution” advice for some common New York apartment problems.
We’ve seen a lot of small kitchens in New York. What are some tips for organizing an apartment that is desperately lacking counter space? Products like our New Concept Table lift up to be used as a counter space, table, desk or shelf only when needed. The rest of the time this table folds down seamlessly against the wall.
We’ve also seen a lot of rooms that are meant to accommodate both dining and living. Can you have dining and living in one space without compromising both?
Absolutely. Coffee tables and console tables that expand into full dining size tables is a great way to save space. Using furniture that serves more than one function means never having to give up one space for another.
Let’s talk bedrooms. What is the best way to have more than one child in a room?
The best way to create space for more than one child is to use a bunk bed that folds up into the wall when not in use. This way, the room can serve another purpose – a playroom, for instance – during the day, and a comfortable bedroom at night. Consolidate clothing, toys, and books into a closet to avoid having too many pieces of furniture, which can clutter a room.
Speaking of kids, what is your advice for New York City dwellers that need to keep a stroller in their apartment? What about a bicycle?
Why not either hang these items on the wall so they don’t take up floor space or consider using a corner closet? Both are great ways to store large items like bikes and strollers.
What are your best tips for having guests over in a small apartment?
When guests come to visit, you will want to be able to get the most out of your space and utilize every square foot. In small homes and apartments, the last thing you want to do is to take up room with a guest bed for those few times a year that family and friends come to visit. A great alternative is to use a wall bed system that has a sofa or desk on the front so that you use the space as a living area or home office the rest of the year!
How can you organize your mail/books in a small space?
There are a lot of ways to organize when finding the right pieces. For instance, we are big fans of the Giralot cubbie tower that rotates and stores everything from books and mail to shoes and accessories. Editing your life is never a bad idea either, especially when it comes to books and mail, which tend to take up space. Sign up for paperless subscriptions and bills to avoid wasting paper!
What’s the most challenging apartment configuration a customer has ever approached you with?
We’ve had several clients with stairwell landings that were really not being used to their fullest potential. Using our wall bed systems, the landing became a very stylish sitting area and guest bedroom. Even foyers can become guest or nanny rooms with the right imagination and resources!
Any thoughts on having a work space in your apartment?
Home offices are becoming more and more popular as people begin to work from home more frequently. Having a home office that does double duty – like office and guest room in one by using a multifunctional wall bed, for instance – can make the space feel much more flexible. Most importantly, plan in sufficient storage so office clutter doesn’t creep into the rest of your home.
When looking for an apartment, any tips on what to look for in order to create separate areas?
Before you begin your search, you will want to have a good idea of the type of functions you want your space to perform. Spaces with separate nooks offer a good starting point. Another important factor to keep in mind is to identify where windows are located so that when separating areas of the apartment you avoid blocking natural light! Sliding doors, French doors, and curtains can help define separate areas without adding permanent walls.
We have to ask, what’s your favorite Resource Furniture product and why?
Our Palazzo sofa turns into a bunk bed at night for kids and adults alike! Not only does it create a comfortable seating and sleeping solution, it’s an engineering marvel and a total showstopper!