When a young woman purchased a small 28m2 apartment in the Marais district of Paris, she had a grand plan for a sleek, minimalistic home. But she also had a lot of clothes and shoes, representative of her work in the fashion industry, and nowhere to put them all. What was she going to do? She got Studio Beau Faire on the job with a €70,000 ($77,400) budget, and the rest is history.
The apartment was charming and reminiscent of old buildings in the Marais district of Paris. It had wooden window shutters, high ceilings, and large windows, but nowhere near enough storage for an avid shopper and shoe collector. Even factoring in the large living room, kitchen, a mezzanine floor, and a bathroom, some renovations were going to have to be made.
Studio Beau Faire got to work on the living area, enhancing the walls and windows by painting them a neutral gray shade. The same colour was chosen for all modes of storage. The seamless look meant storage areas could blend in for the desired minimalist look the owner sought.
Much of the apartment’s original layout was maintained, but the ladder previously used to access the mezzanine floor was replaced with a functional staircase. The parquet floors, while charming, were beyond repair, so natural oak was laid in its place for a light, bright, and spacious vibe.
Large cabinets in the living area were painted the same gray as the front feature wall, and a ladder was chosen as a feature in the home and as a practical way to reach items in the cupboard. Behind the stylish doors was a deceiving amount of depth, which would be more than enough for the average shoe lover.
Interior designer Sabrina Julien from Studio Beau Faire said a suspended staircase was the first idea for access to the mezzanine, but the need for storage overturned that decision. Instead, gray stairs with a black rail and oak flooring were installed. Each step was custom-crafted with trays, drawers, and a sliding wardrobe to meet the mark for the homeowner’s storage requirements.
Before Sabrina and her team entered the apartment, the kitchen was partitioned from the main living area and didn’t get any natural light. Now, it’s open, bright, and contemporary to match the rest of the apartment. It, too, has plenty of storage, while also being fitted out with lift-style elegant cabinetry.
All furniture in the kitchen comes from IKEA, minus some custom solid oak pieces and kitchen worktops. The stainless-steel cupboard fronts tie in beautifully with the gray hues in the rest of the home. The texture difference, however, offers a point of difference and also reflects light to provide an illusion of space.
With the oak, white, and gray colour schemes throughout, it makes sense to add a touch of industrial styling with a black rail. This rail adds both a sense of perspective into the living room and safety as well. It also adds a subtle break to the light gray and oak colours.
The bedroom, while of a conservative size, lacks for nothing. It’s easily accessible via the functional staircase after the ladder was removed, and it has an excellent view over the living area. What’s more, it no longer lacks storage. A gray wall of storage lines one wall, with access from one side of the bed.
No stone was left unturned in creating perfection in the bathroom. Simple elements like a resin basin and porcelain stoneware contrasted beautifully against the sharper faucet shades. The round moose mirror added a geometric balance at the same time.
Concrete porcelain stoneware tiles make up the floor and ceiling of the bathroom, with clever in-built shelving to house all those necessary bathroom products. The large size of the tiles promotes a sense of space, not to mention being an economical option.
To buck the trend, the interior designers of this small apartment went with a round mirror and built-in shelf. The stylish look is the icing on the cake of what is ultimately a beautiful and unique apartment in Paris.