How a Small-Space Expert Makes the Most of Her 450-Square-Foot Walk-Up

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The last time I met up with senior TV producer Meaghan Kimball was at her minuscule walk-up apartment. I caught up with her at her new digs — which, by comparison, feel like a palace.

If anyone knows how to make a shoe box livable, it’s senior TV producer Meaghan Kimball. (See her 286-square-foot walk-up that was featured in the summer 2014 “Design Hunting” issue.) Kimball has gone and pulled off another feat of design prowess with her new (downright-luxurious-feeling) 450-square-foot apartment. In her living room, she uses a lacquer desk from her old apartment as a console table, sticking to a blue-and-white palette, which includes a new painting from One Kings Lane and two new blue velvet X Benches from Ballard Designs — all of which mix happily with her old ginger jar and decanters, treasures from her last place.

Although oddly reminiscent of her old fourth-floor walk-up in its layout, Kimball’s new apartment (which is still a walk-up, but just one flight up) has a separate living room and kitchen. Now that the living room doesn’t have to function as a kitchen as well, Kimball put down a sisal rug from Pottery Barn, treated herself to a sofa from Joss & Main, and found the blue-and-white pillows on Etsy. The mid-century-modern mirror is from eBay, and the gold lamp is from One Kings Lane.

“I was the first tenant to live here after the apartment was renovated,” Kimball says. Another bonus: having a dishwasher. Kimball added the Grundtal knife holder from Ikea and found the vintage marble cutting board in Sag Harbor. The blue-and-white plates were also used as decorative wall art in the last apartment.

Kimball kept the bathroom clean and simple with a vintage black-and-white photo, perfume bottles, and a white-framed mirror. She sprang for a white waffle shower curtain from Bed, Bath & Beyond and customized it by sewing on a hot-pink ribbon from M&J Trimming.

Kimball repurposed the chinoiserie cabinet she had in her old living room as a vanity in her new bedroom. Like with the shower curtain, she added an M&J Trimming ribbon to the Roman shade she found at Country Curtains, matching the pink pattern on the Nixon throw from Jonathan Adler. “I also made this valence, using Mood Fabrics, and imitated the design on the Nixon blanket,” she says. The blue-and-white bedding is from One Kings Lane. Does she miss anything from the old shoe box? “I miss the moldings — but that’s about it!”

How to Make the Most of a 450-Square-Foot Home