News Home & Design Tiny Paris Apartment Warms Up With Clever Hidden Furniture This micro-apartment makeover blushes with subtle, smart details. By Kimberley Mok Kimberley Mok Twitter Writer McGill University Cornell University Kimberley Mok is a former architect who has been covering architecture and the arts for Treehugger since 2007. Learn about our editorial process Updated April 28, 2021 01:42PM EDT Fact checked by Haley Mast Fact checked by Haley Mast LinkedIn Harvard University Extension School Haley Mast is a freelance writer, fact-checker, and small organic farmer in the Columbia River Gorge. She enjoys gardening, reporting on environmental topics, and spending her time outside snowboarding or foraging. Topics of expertise and interest include agriculture, conservation, ecology, and climate science. Learn about our fact checking process Studio Beau Faire Share Twitter Pinterest Email News Environment Business & Policy Science Animals Home & Design Current Events Treehugger Voices News Archive In many of Europe's older cities, small living spaces can be quite common, especially in cities as old and as dense as Paris, France. Over the years, we've appreciated a number of interesting small space renovations and quirky conversions in the City of Lights, ranging from a former doorman's residence, a bathroom-turned-micro-apartment, to an old garage transformed into a home for a family of four. And as anyone who's lived in a small apartment will tell you, a lot of creativity and careful attention to details is needed to maximize the space that's available, and to make all the miscellaneous pieces work together. In renovating a tiny 193-square-foot studio apartment in an older building dating back to the 1970s, French interior designer Sabrina Julien of Studio Beau Faire (previously) took a measured, subtle approach. Located on the 14th floor of a building in Paris' 15th arrondissement, the existing Rue Falguiere apartment had a rectangular layout, with one partition separating the entry corridor and bathroom from the main living space. The kitchen — placed in the corner of the main living space — was vanishingly small. There was no storage space, nor any designated zones for sleeping or sitting to speak of, resulting in the client using a sofa bed as a temporary solution. Studio Beau Faire To start, Julien took down the partition and door separating the entry hall from the main room. This instantly brought in more light deeper into the apartment and helped establish a better flow between spaces. In addition, more storage was inserted into the form of built-in shelving, now occupying the space behind the old door, like a new crown topping the white-painted radiator. Studio Beau Faire The woven pink decor was handmade by French textile artist Mélanie Clénet, and perfectly matches the color palette in the rest of the apartment. Studio Beau Faire One of the main design moves here was to create a dedicated sleeping area without constructing a mezzanine, which can be difficult to get in and out of. This was done by installing a large bed on an elevated platform, which creates extra space underneath for storage drawers, and even a clever roll-out table. This helps to save space by allowing the client to tuck things away when they are not needed. Studio Beau Faire The sleeping area is defined by a birch plywood frame, which has been clad with a barely noticeable metal mesh. As Julien explains on Côté Maison: "Instead of creating a partition that would have blocked off the volume, we worked with an expanded metal mesh screen which allows air and light to pass through. The bedroom therefore has its own 'universe', but retains a view of the entire space." Studio Beau Faire Moving over to the adjacent kitchen, the new scheme has significantly enlarged the puny kitchen by adding more counter space, an extra open shelf, and cabinetry overhead and to the side. Studio Beau Faire Like the rest of the apartment, the color palette remains neutral with pale wood tones, offset with pale blush pinks and greys, creating a much more modern and functional space that feels like a breath of fresh air. Studio Beau Faire Julien further explains why birch wood was chosen as the main material in the renovation: "We chose birch plywood for its aesthetic qualities: its is a light wood, slightly pinkish, with a beautiful grain. All the fittings have been shaped, in order to maintain unity in a small space. If we multiply the nuances and materials we quickly find ourselves with a messy result." The bathroom has also been redone by adding two hinged doors that have metal-meshed top halves (a bit risqué perhaps!) but Julien says that: "As the room lacked light, we changed the solid door for a double door. We made it in birch plywood, with the same metal mesh as the sleeping area." The bathroom's dated walls were swapped out for a bolder, grey graphic tile. The old bathtub is gone, replaced with a freestanding tub with rounded corners, adding a touch of luxury in the otherwise small bathroom. Studio Beau Faire As we've said many times before, preserving and rehabilitating the existing building stock in cities is more environmentally friendly than demolishing them and building anew. Here, the results speak for themselves: Julien's clever and creative eye has transformed what was once a sad and small studio apartment into a cozy urban haven, right in the heart of a beautiful city. To see more, visit Studio Beau Faire and on Instagram.