7 Adaptable Designs for Storage in Small Spaces

Hayley Arsenault Hayley Arsenault

For the typical urban dweller, clever storage and space efficiency are essential to a functional interior. These small spaces each make the most of their square footage through reconfigurable storage design able to adapt to the capacity constrictions of city residences. The projects below offer alternatives to the quality of life achievable within the existing and future typologies of a high-density urban realm. From a multi-functional central pod to skillfully placed custom compartments, this collection of designs covers a wide array of solutions for limited space.

Millennium Residence by Joel Sanders Architect

An acid-etched glass service core acts as a cleverly conceived storage unit at the center of a 2,000-square-foot Manhattan abode. Designed by the firm of Joel Sanders Architect, the centrally positioned core selectively reveals the components that it stores, from the master closet to bookshelves and home entertainment. The core also acts as the principal light source for the apartment as it illuminates the silhouettes within it.

home 08 by i29 Interior Architects

Austere aesthetic choices in conjunction with integrated custom designs maximize the functionality of this small Amsterdam apartment designed by i29 Interior Architects. All of the primary functions of the dwelling are placed in two wall units, while the entrance hall, wardrobe, and kitchen equipment remain neatly tucked behind a pinewood wall, providing its occupants with the visual assurance of an uncomplicated domestic space.

600% Storage Apartmentby MODU

The 600% Storage Apartment features custom-designed storage areas throughout the West Village townhouse, making it feasible for the the occupants of this double occupancy unit to retain their necessary goods. The architectural invention enabled a six-fold increase in storage capacity through its cleverly placed compartments tucked into the corridors and ceilings of the dwelling. The clever conception maximizes storage space, thus eliminating the need for additional bulk.

Front and Back Apartment by H20 Architectes

The design of the Front and Back Apartment features a continuous wide-open space able to expand to increasing complexity and density depending on its occupant’s needs. The adjustable geometries of the space determine the variant ways of living possible within the Paris dwelling. The sculpted shapes of the hollows, niches, and alcoves that define the storage vary in size and color, adapting to multiple functions in different locations. As an avid comic strip collector, the apartment owner utilized these cavities as creative displays for his expanding stock.

Unfolding Apartment by MKCA // Michael K Chen Architecture

MKCA // Michael K Chen Architecture’s Unfolding Apartment on West 73rd Street in Manhattan incorporates the features of a more sizable space into its 450 square feet through a single customized cabinetry piece. The oversized series of doors and panels occupies the length of the studio’s wall and can be reconfigured at the discretion of the user in order to create more space for the apartment.

The Studio by Nicholas Gurney

The size and storage constraints of The Studio in Sydney, Australia, were tackled by the insertion of a joinery pod skillfully designed by the firm of Nicholas Gurney. Utilizing the floor-to-ceiling height of the apartment, the pod features wall-to-wall sliding doors that accommodate an entry foyer, a washroom, and a bed. Allowing for a single zone of the residence to be used at a time, the adjustable positioning of the sliding doors determines the function of the pod.

East Village Studio by Jordan Parnass Digital Architecture

Ample storage and maximum efficiency are achieved by the open space enabled in the bedroom loft design of Jordan Parnass Digital Architecture. The modern, clean aesthetic of the lofted bed affords space for a walk-in closet and stair risers that cleverly conceal built-in drawer storage. The detailed millwork effectively exploits the square footage of the East Village studio space.