You might assume that a 200 square foot apartment would be a student’s house on a budget or perhaps a short-term rental for travelers. This apartment, however, belongs to a successful businesswoman who lives outside of Paris and needed a small pied-à-terre in the capital. Pauline Lorenzi-Boisrond is in charge of renovating the studio in rue du Cherche-Midi. “She comes to Paris regularly for work but she was fed up with impersonal hotel rooms where she can’t leave her belongings from one visit to the next,” explains Pauline, interior designer and founder of Studio Ett. Um. “She wanted her little suite in the Saint-Germain-des-Prés district.” A house means “house” in Swedish. It is indeed an apt name for a designer tasked with overcoming the limitations of space to bring out its intimate charms.
Pursuing the goal of creating the ambience of a hotel suite, Studio Ett Hem created a small multi-functional entrance hall that also solves the constraint created by the slanted load-bearing wall. The wall, which runs along one side of the space, features a series of closet doors, some decorative, some functional. One set, however, leads to the apartment bathroom. On the right, an elegant but discreet kitchen adjoins the sleeping area, separated by a wooden and glass partition.
The efficient galley includes a fridge, two-burner cooktop, small sink, hidden microwave and storage. “In small spaces, we are often afraid to create zones, but differentiating the functions and installing circulations enlarges the space in a counter-intuitive way”, explains Pauline. The wood and glass partition defines the double entrance-kitchen space and separates it from the quieter part of the room, but its rounded shapes also soften this border. As spaces in small apartments often have to fulfill multiple functions, this dining area is placed under a window where natural light is also within reach when it plays its other role, that of an office.