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...


Vincero's Beautiful Watches Aren't Just Insta-Worthy--They're All Under $150, Too!

When most people think of a watch beautiful enough to ...


These Are The 10 Best Plus-Size Pieces For Fall

One of the many reasons why I love ...


It's *Finally* Sweater Weather And These Are The 8 We're Going To Wear On Repeat

Now that what seemed like a never-ending summer is ...


The 5 Closet-Essentials You *Need* For Fat Days

Are you a pear, hourglass, rectangle, apple or full figure ...


Psst! The Perfect Satin Camisole Is On Sale For Just $20 Right Now

If you don't have a black satin camisole in ...


This Just Might Be The Most Flattering T-Shirt... Ever!

Even though I already own a lot of really great ...


Stock Up On This Perfectly Slouchy Sweater While It's On Sale For 40% Off

Sweater weather has finally arrived--rejoice! If you're totally ...


Psst! These Are The Best Everyday T-Shirt Bras You Can Buy Right On Amazon

Finding a bra the offers support, is comfortable and works ...


This Is The Secret To Pulling Off Shorts If You Have Big Thighs

Ladies with larger thighs, stop spending your summers sweating it ...


3 Things Every Woman With Big Thighs Should Know About Looking Good In Jeans

Denim doesn't discriminate when it comes to body type. ...


Want To Look Your Best At The Holiday Party? Here's What You Need To Know

Holiday parties are a time for merriment and joy... at ...


These Dresses Are So Slimming--They Look Good On *Every* Woman

We’ve all taken an online quiz (or ten) to ...


Here's How To Look And Feel Good In A Crop Top, No Matter What Your Size

There are lots of fashion trends swirling around on social ...