If you are curious about how to style up a small apartment without making really massive structural changes, you'll love this little Japanese home. It started life as a subdivided space with lots of little rooms and a fabulous view. The main problem was that the views could only be enjoyed from the bedroom. The home is located in the Japanese city of Yokohama and the views encompassed the Minato Mirai harbour—so they were undoubtedly the star feature of the home. Restoration and renovation professionals Equip took on the project, moved around the inner walls, installed an indoor terrace and turned this relatively small apartment into a beautifully modern little home. This project will provide lots of ideas for those with small homes, so let's go on with exploring it through a series of beautiful photos…
The window views have been turned into a grand feature in the home with the addition of a glass-walled partition. The black frame on the large window panes really draws attention to the height and width of the terrace. It makes the outdoor area seem that much bigger and adds a distinctive flair to the interior spaces. It also increases the floor space of the balcony area. This indoor terrace additionally functions as a laundry area and a little garden. A hammock on the left capitalises on the view and serves as another little spot to enjoy this portal into the outside world. A cleverly utilised window view like this doesn't just make the most of the light entering a home, it also encourages one to look beyond the physical boundaries of a small apartment and make it feel that much larger.
The original layout of this area was subdivided so the area on the right received very little natural light. The inner wall was removed and it was designed to become one large open-plan living, dining and kitchen area. The decor of each area is unified by the prevalent use of timber and a subtle blue/grey colour palette. Reorganising the space, however, resulted in some unsightly ceiling beams. The one on the far right has been obscured with wooden storage cabinets.
The ceiling beam that runs along the centre of the room was turned into a wooden walking ledge for the owners' cat. The home has also been painted a more vibrant blue in one corner. This area has been kept clear and it anticipated to become a bedroom for future children. We love the built-in cupboards and tall stand for the cat. These make the most of the vertical space in this relatively small home. Also, note the large glass window in the door, small changes like this were make to allow as much light as possible to penetrate the interior.
The original kitchen was in a self-contained room off a small hallway. It received so little natural light that electrical light was needed during the day. Now, the galley-style kitchen receives direct sunlight from the large window. It has also been set up to face the main living area and make the home feel that big bigger and more integrated. Finally, we love the handleless kitchen cabinets. They make the kitchen look uncluttered and simple.
The bedroom is relatively small now, but it's perfectly comfortable. The round doorway was left in its original form and curves like this always make a room feel cosy and comforting. The colour palette is composed of dark earthy browns and the bedroom furniture has been restricted to the fundamentals. It can be difficult to exercise restraint when it comes to small homes, but here we can see how a simple bedroom can be perfectly comfortable without any fuss.
The bathroom is well integrated into the rest of the interior decor. This has been done by incorporating wooden materials and continuing with the same white palette. The bathroom is quite small, so the design approach has been kept simple. The bathroom furniture has been whittled down to the essentials and there is a distinct lack of fussy detailing. Finally, it can be difficult to find space for a door opening in a small home, so a sliding door has been installed. We hope you enjoyed this tour!
For more minimalist home inspiration, check out: The Japanese home of Nordic cool.