1. JP Ward, AIA, of Anthony Wilder Design/Build converted an attic into a lofty with sleeping space for young children.
2. John F. Heltzel, AIA, concealed outlets and wires around a desk behind a corkboard on a hinged panel.
3. The Nando bar cabinet opens from the top to reveal compartments for bottles and glassware.
4. The Studio Becker Butcher Block island.
5. Ernesto Santalla, AIA, LEED AP, of Studio Santalla, Inc., created built-ins along the wall of a DC apartment to keep clutter out of sight.
6. The ORG Desk Bed.
7. Wendy Danziger turned  a small space into a combination TV room and guest room.
8. Presotto, a modular wall-storage solution by Milano Smart Living,
9. Tailored Living/Hafele America

Ideas for Small Spaces

Industry experts and product innovations inspire homeowners to live large in little spaces

1. Loft Living
To make use of a tiny attic loft, JP Ward, AIA, of Anthony Wilder Design/Build created a cozy sleeping space for three young children. First, he replaced a treacherous ship’s ladder with a sleek spiral staircase leading up to the loft. He divided the loft into a room with a desk and a sleeping space (above), where architectural elements double as furniture to minimize clutter. Three half-walls, complete with their own separate wiring, serve as headboards, while the alcoves are used as night stands. On this project, Ward says, “We let the space tell us what to do.”

2. Cleverly Concealed
In a recent project, architect John F. Heltzel, AIA, concealed unsightly outlets and wires around a desk by attaching a corkboard on a hinged panel behind the desktop and framing it decoratively to match. “This solution hides the cords while providing a functional and aesthetic surface,” Heltzel says.

3. Liquor License
Designed by Tarcisio Colzani for Eurotrend, the Nando bar cabinet is made of Canaletta walnut with a maple interior. Meant for a small space, it opens from the top to reveal compartments for bottles and glassware and surfaces for pouring drinks; a drawer holds napkins and utensils. eurotrendusa.com

4. Island Fever
The Studio Becker Butcher Block island is made of beech wood with a concealed drawer that locks in 16 German-made knives. A spice rack and hanging rails attach to the sides, leaving a clear work surface. Stainless-steel legs on optional castors allow for easy mobility. studiobecker.com

5. Small Miracle
A tiny Penn Quarter apartment presented Ernesto Santalla, AIA, LEED AP, of Studio Santalla, Inc., with a challenge: how to create enough room for living, dining, sleeping and storage. Santalla razed walls to admit light and impart the open feel of a larger space. He then separated the living and sleeping areas with a screen wall to provide privacy. Built-ins along the wall keep clutter out of sight. “When designing a small space, think in terms of purpose,” advises Santalla. “Use the available space to the fullest. Unused space leads to clutter.”

6. Smooth Move
The ORG Desk Bed fits neatly in a spare room or kid’s bedroom. By day, it offers an open work surface; by night it’s a twin bed. A mechanism provides a smooth transition while bedding and other items remain stationary. Available through Econize Closets. eco-nize.com; homeorg.com

7. A Tight Fit
During the redesign of a Bethesda condo, Wendy Danziger of Danziger Design was asked to turn a nine-by-11-foot space into a combination TV room and guest room. “It had to include the TV, a sofa bed and two chairs,” says Danziger. Through judicious furniture choices, she managed to fit a sleeper sofa on one wall opposite custom built-ins by SCB Woodworking that frame the flat-screen TV. The sleeper sofa opens to within one inch of the built-in cabinetry. A Lucite coffee table doubles as extra seating.

8. Modular Magic
Presotto is a series of sleek, modular wall-storage solutions by Milano Smart Living, offering plenty of stylish shelving for spaces large and small. These contemporary units are customizable, with multiple shelf options and styles. Materials include stone, wood and metal. milanosmartliving.com

9. Modern Ingenuity
Designed by Tailored Living/Hafele America, the Ironfix Ironing Board offers an ingenious solution to the hassle of ironing in a limited space. The board slides out from a concealed shelf, swiveling 180 degrees for convenience. Available through Tailored Living in Northern Virginia. tailoredliving.com