There’s a shortage of affordable housing in many larger cities, prompting many to find alternatives like micro-apartments, houseboats, co-housing or even installing prefabs on existing roofs in the city.
In Stockholm, Sweden, architect Karin Matz helped a client convert what was once a run-down, half-renovated apartment on Heleneborgsgatan street into a livable space. When the flat was purchased back in 2012, it was a mess: the previous owner had started renovations almost 30 years before falling ill, leaving the 387-square-foot (36 square metres) apartment as-is until his death, with peeling wallpaper and rodent tenants. It’s a story that the new design tries to relay, says Matz:
The finished apartment is a result of a fascination for this; a try to let the previous layers and stories of a space live on and at the same time fill the requirements for the new story that will take place.
With the redesign, there’s a new layout with a more modern aesthetic: the bed has been elevated on a platform so that a clever closet space, a carousel clothing rack, and some kitchen shelving could be installed. At night, the sleeping platform can be closed off with curtains.
The kitchen has custom cabinetry that is inspired by IKEA, and an induction stove top.
The other half of the space has intentionally been left with a more unfinished look, alluding to its history.
Here’s a view into the bathroom, which has a full-length mirror on the inside of the door. When the door is opened, the mirror gives the illusion of a larger space, and also reveals more storage and the washing machine. There’s even a convenient hatch in the door for dropping clothes into the laundry basket.
Proving that older buildings can still have many more lives to live, this relatively low-cost renovation has turned a neglected space into an efficiently designed home that will be enjoyed for many more years to come. To see more, visit Karin Matz.