Balanced In Brooklyn
Beauty meets functionality in the before-and-after of this small space renovation.
With a modest budget, and less than 500 square feet to work with, designer Courtney McLeod was tasked with bringing style and function to a tiny studio apartment while keeping a close eye on the bottom line. McLeod designs spaces that strike a balance between efficiency and aesthetics: “If something is beautiful, but not functional, what is the point?”
Mix It Up
In the kitchen, McLeod removed a wall and relocated the refrigerator, allowing her to add cabinets, lengthen the counter, and make room for a dishwasher. She selected contrasting surfaces, balancing the sleek Carrara marble countertop with a walnut breakfast bar, then added shine with blue ceramic subway tiles and a stainless steel Kraus sink. “The conventional wisdom in a small kitchen is that everything has to be consistent. This space proves that some rules are meant to be broken,” she said.
The outdated bathroom needed a complete makeover. McLeod gladly accepted the challenge. “I love spaces that are an absolute disaster. We can rip everything out and just start fresh.” She replaced the old thick-sided tub with a sleek, Duravit soaking tub, which freed up floor space for a vanity with much-needed storage. A soothing, neutral color palette and contemporary Symmons Duro shower system created the spa feel the client was looking for. Oversized porcelain tiles mimic the look of marble, but are budget-friendly, easy to to care for, and — with fewer grout lines — visually expand the tiny space.
Finding trusted, expert partners is key to a successful project. McLeod carefully selects her tradespeople and vendors to make sure everything runs smoothly. She often relies on her relationship with her Build.com representative, Jenna, to get the job done. “Time is money. There is such a breadth of materials, it’s almost a one-stop shop for me, and the prices can’t be beat. My rep can answer any questions, and I’ve found that when we have to make a change, customer service is quick to help with logistics.” When McLeod discovered that she needed a special shower fitting to complete the bathroom project, Jenna was able to have it delivered the next day.
Right Meets Left Interior Design
"I want to create a space that makes the client feel proud, that puts a smile on their faces at the end of the day. It’s always about joy." —Courtney McLeod