For Jacqueline Navarro, moving from Georgia to a cooped-up New York City apartment—with a husband, dog, and collections in tow!—required both city smarts and small-town resourcefulness. Here are 7 simple ways she maximized her bite of the Big Apple.
To keep things airy, Jacqueline plays up her favorite feature—the apartment's abundant natural light—with bright paint (White Wisp by Benjamin Moore) and semisheer window shades used throughout the spaces. Here in the entryway, an unexpected assortment of prized finds (ironstone plates, garden tools) adds textural and sculptural interest.
What's the most resourceful feat in her apartment? "The dining table! My husband and I modified a picnic table plan to fit the space and extended the legs to standard seat height," Jacqueline says. "The whole project cost $110 and seats up to eight people!"
Jacqueline used two Ikea twin beds to create a space-saving daybed large enough to accommodate the occasional overnight guest. She simply attached a headboard to each end of one frame and topped with a mattress.
With drawer space at a premium, practical wares like clothespins and dog treats are on display in eye-pleasing glass vessels.
"Window" to the World
No above-the-sink view? No problem. An arched antique mirror maximizes the light that pours in nearby. "If you love it, make it work," Jacqueline says about downsizing techniques. "At 4 feet wide, the 1950s sink [at left] was a bit big for our kitchen—but I just couldn't part with it. We had it re- finished and retrofitted a piece of butcher block to sit on the lip of the sink bowl so we could have a work surface."
Wall-mounted sconces free up space on the mismatched "nightstands," which include a ghost chair (left) and an old ballot box (right) that stores seasonal decor. "700 square feet doesn't feel small at all if you don't go too grand with your furniture choices," Jacqueline says. "Our low-slung bed, for example, makes the ceiling feel higher."
A cohesive color scheme makes for a curated, not cluttered, display.
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