9 Things Every Studio Apartment Needs, Accoring To Joss & Main's Style Director

October 7, 2014 by Jeanine Edwards
shefinds | Style
view slideshow

Even though I’ve been living on my own for years now, I still find myself spending hours and hours on Pinterest looking for home decor inspiration. I’m always wondering, what’s the secret? What’s the one trick I don’t know that will transform my small space from a glorified dorm room into an actual adult apartment.

Well believe it or not, I actually got tired of looking for the secret on Pinterest, so I went to an expert. Donna Garlough is Style Director at cult home decor site Joss and Main and not only did she tell me what to avoid when decorating a small space, but she also revealed 9 things every studio apartment absolutely needs. Read more below:

SHEfinds: What is the biggest mistake people make when decorating a studio apartment or small space?

Donna Garlough: For non-designers, there’s always a tendency to place all major furniture pieces, like sofas and desks, flat against the walls, leaving the center of the room open. But especially in a studio, which is by definition a multipurpose room, “floating” your furniture in the space can help create visually distinct zones for eating, lounging, working, and sleeping. Placed perpendicular to the wall, a sofa can act as a divider between the living room and home office, and a long console table or shelving unit can separate a kitchen from the dining area.

SF: Any tips/tricks for making a studio feel bigger?

DG: Keep things airy. Instead of really heavy, substantial pieces that extend all the way to the floor, opt for leggy chairs and loveseats, and glass-topped tables that keep a clear line of sight across the room.

Likewise, open-sided and open-back étagères feel lighter than closed-sided bookshelves. Wherever you can, emphasize the height of the space: Mount window hardware above the window trim, as close to the ceiling as you can without letting the fabric graze it, and let the window fabric hang all the way to the floor. And if you’ve got great ceiling height to play with, install an amazing light fixture to draw the eye up.

SF: What items would you consider essential to making a studio apartment feel like home?

Click through the slideshow to find out.

Be sure to check out wall decor starting at $25, fall table decor and Bob & Cortney Novogratz for Walmart.

[Photo: Matthew Williams/]


Vice President
Jeanine Edwards is a writer and editor covering fashion, beauty and shopping. She never misses a sale and is committed to good skincare. Prior to joining the SheFinds team, Jeanine worked at XO Group and InStyle. You can reach Jeanine at [email protected]

From Our Partners

Learn more about RevenueStripe...

From Our Partners

Learn more about RevenueStripe...


4 Stunning Animal-Print Pieces *Every* Woman Should Own For Summer

The one trend I'm most excited to wear on ...


8 Straw Bags For Summer That You'll Want To Wear On And Off The Beach

One of my favorite ways to welcome a new season ...


The Perfect Summer Blouse To Wear With *Everything* Just Went On Sale For 40% Off

Even though spring and summer are all about dresses, some ...


Order This Flattering $39 Maxi Dress In Every Color While It's On Sale At Nordstrom

If you're working on stocking your closet for summer, ...


The Easy Outfit Trend That Will Instantly Become Your New Go-To Look

Remember when your mom used to dress you in matching ...


This $19 Top Is *Super* Flattering (It Hides Your Tummy!)

I don't know about you, but I'm all ...