5 Ways To Make Your Studio Unit Look Bigger

Your studio unit doesn't have to resemble a plain white box. Make it look and feel spacious with these easy-to-do design hacks. By Katherine Lopez

Living in a small space sure has its challenges. A studio unit nowadays can measure 20 sqm or less, but this doesn’t mean you are confined to living in a shoebox of a home. There are several creative ways to make a studio unit look bigger—and no, we don’t mean tearing down walls or combining it with its adjacent condo unit. Here are some of these design hacks:

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1. Use horizontal or diagonal elements.

“Owners can add horizontal lines as [accents] to get the illusion of a wide space. It could be a ceiling treatment, a floor layout, or wallpaper. They can also play with a diagonal pattern,” says architect Anthony Yan of Yan + Sotto Architects and Builders. If the shape of your studio unit is rectangular, place the horizontal elements on the shorter side of the wall to visually extend it.

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2. Create depth by using cove lights.

“For units with low ceiling height, use coves to light the ceiling in white or daylight to give [an] illusion of height. This is also true for walls as the lights and shadows that the cove creates give a feeling of depth,” says Yan.

However, he adds that the use of lighting in any space, not just a studio unit, depends on the personality of its occupant. “For me and my wife, who’s also an architect, we like daylight lighting fixtures for our general lighting and warm light on lamps or wall accent lights for those slow and relaxing days and nights. This helps give our unit a different ambiance in an instant and provide flexibility in the use of space in any given time or purpose.”

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3. Keep the unit organized at all times.

No matter how many storage spaces you have, if your studio unit is unkempt and cluttered, it will still look cramped. “You can only put so [many] cabinets and storage spaces in a studio unit so the real challenge is for the owner to keep the unit organized. An organized space will always feel comfortable while an untidy space can make even a big room feel small,” says Yan. To create storage spaces, he recommends adding overhead cabinets and using furniture with hidden storage like beds with drawers underneath.

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4. Say no to bulky furniture.

“Do not get any heavy and bulky furniture or items which are difficult to move. A studio unit is no place for this type of furniture,” says Yan. “Opt for [a] collapsible dining table instead of regular ones. Choose bean bags over sofa sets. Use the wall to hang appliances like your TV and speakers instead of putting things on the floor or [on a] console table.”

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5. Go for bespoke, multi-functional pieces.

“This helps the studio unit owner maximize the space by having furniture in the right size,” says Yan. “However, we know that custom-made pieces are costly. Decide which items are worth having custom-made and which can be bought off-the-floor.” Take note that sometimes branded or imported furniture can turn out to be even more expensive than custom-made pieces. If you are picky with your furniture but don’t want to have to import pieces, bespoke items can help solve your problem.

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You can start to use the hacks above on a studio unit at Avida Towers Altura. Their thoughtfully designed units are the perfect canvas for your creativity. To learn more about Avida Towers Altura and other Avida development projects, visit Avida Land today.

Renovating or furnishing your space? Call Yan + Sotto Architects and Builders at (02) 916-00034, or visit www.yansotto.com.