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Lofty ambition: the smart renovation of a tiny apartment

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As we travel across the organised city of Seoul, we find ourselves in the midst of urban spaces that have been done up with lots of style and plenty of practical appeal. But this home by IDEEAA, a group of architects in the South Korean capital, was initially in a very drab and boring state. Fortunately, when the architects were approached about the renovation, they saw immense potential in the dark and dingy abode. They transformed it with a pristine white makeover to make it more sophisticated, airy, spacious and welcoming. Currently, a chirpy young professional enjoys the smart aesthetics of this compact residence with her feline friend. So let us go on a before & after tour that will leave you inspired!

Before: dullness is thy name

The main area of the home is this hall with the kitchen on one side. The space was dull and lacking a stylish punch. With beige cabinets that were chipping at the corners and white walls that seemed defeated against the test of time and style, nothing seemed to match. Plus, the hardwood floor seemed to pick up on the dull ambience to make things seem even more dingy.

After: Ingenious loft space

Now, with the designer’s magical touch, we encounter a true wow moment in terms of style! The splash of creamy white paint has done a wonderful job of coating the earlier clinical white incarnation. The kitchen now enjoys a touch of glossy white even as the loft space above has been opened up to create a den and bedroom area. A lighter wooden finish for the floors also creates a soft and classy aesthetic.

After: making the most of vertical space

It was dispiriting to see the loft-like space above the false ceiling remain unused previously. Well, not anymore! This stylish den was created in the space that suddenly appeared when the false ceiling that dwarfed the kitchen was removed. All the designers did after that was to add a slim railing in wood with some white planks for support, and you have a space where you can sit and watch the proceedings below. It is also perfect for reading, writing or working on a laptop with the task light that has been affixed to the wall.

Before: grim and bare

This grim-looking space seemed to be sulking due to the lack of designer intervention. The bone-white walls reflected the dark sheet of tint that draped the flimsy sliding doors. The same brown wooden flooring from the hall stood at odds with the rest of the colours, or lack thereof.

After: a light timber living space

Light-grain wooden flooring was extended to the spacious living room, which was designed out of the depressing-looking space we just saw. Sleek and minimalist furniture pieces in light wood dot the area, complementing the plush rug too. A slim and long shelf is topped by a wall-mounted TV, and it holds books, knick-knacks and more. A small stepladder adds to the fun element of this youngish space, along with the dark grey cushioned seats on the rug. A large potted plant does well enough to bring nature inside, while the large sliding glass doors now allow plenty of sunlight to flood the room. 

This small home now has an open feel with a shift in colours and levels. The apartment also shows us how simple structural tweaks and little changes in decor accents can directly impact the entire design scheme. 

If you are looking for more inspiration, check out another impressive story here: From blank canvas to masterpiece! An arty home is born.

What do you think of the new loft space in this apartment? Can you imaging living here? Let us know in the comments!
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