Design your life to include more money, health and happiness with less stuff, space and energy.

Design your life to include more money, health and happiness with less stuff, space and energy.

Big Personality, Small Apartment

We have a tendency of showcasing sleek, somewhat futuristic small apartments on this site, and while we are quite unapologetic about this, it is by no means the only aesthetic available to small space dwellers. In fact, many of our readers appreciate a more lived-in vibe to their small interiors, and we thought this 242 sq ft apartment in Manhattan’s West Village a nice example of what that can look like.

The apartment is shared by couple Jourdan Lawlor and Tobin Ludwig. The former bought the tiny place a few weeks before meeting the latter, and when things got serious, they decided to throw money into the apartment rather than moving to a larger space. They replaced the kitchen, added cabinetry and bought the Nuovoliola wall bed/sofa from Resource Furniture, which turns the main room–i.e. the only room–into the bedroom. There is also a pocket dining table and bench that pull out of a cabinet.


The apartment benefits greatly by its access to a communal garden, which the apartment faces out into. Another perk is its location in the heart of the West Village, a neighborhood that enjoys the split personality of being lively and tranquil (with some block-by-block variation).

Unlike many apartments we feature here, the little space is brimming with art, books, rugs and other stuff people collect over the years. That said, the couple did have to get rid of a lot of stuff to fit into the space together. Ludwig spoke positively of the experience, telling Curbed, “We both culled things we accumulated that we had been hauling from place to place because we could. I don’t feel like I lost anything, but I gained a lot.”

Via Curbed

  • Jill

    I personally prefer this over the sterile tiny spaces you generally show.

  • how do the benches work?

    • David Friedlander

      hey g,
      jourdan says it’s original to the apartment, but you can get similar ones here:

    • West Village Wee Cottage

      Hey Graham – the benches were original to our home but I have found one person who still makes them:

      Pretty cool, huh? Are you designing anything new these days?

    • West Village Wee Cottage

      ha, silly question. Read your bio, I suppose this website! 🙂

  • Rob Eisner

    A charming and homey place. I love it! However, I would like to see some posts about small houses. Not micro houses. The reaction against supersized homes has gone too far for me and many. I’m talking about, say 700 to 1200 square feet. Not a vacation home, but a year-round principle residence. There are several advantages to a house as opposed to a condo or apartment (as well as a lot more work): light comes in from all four directions; your neighbors are not the other side of a possibly thin wall; and, if you own it, then no one can tell you you can’t have pets.

  • desertboot

    My favourite studio so far; I could definitely see myself living here! Although not as a couple.

  • Cynthia Carr

    I think this is my favorite loaf the tiny living spaces, so far. Lovely, warm and welcoming!

  • Cynthia Carr

    “of” pardon my auto correct.