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Home visit: a compact home filled with collections

Carola’s home is a monochrome treasure trove for her and daughter Holly. Despite its compact size, it’s full of things they’ve collected and cleverly displayed. See how it’s done here…

A large dining table and wall of bookshelves.
A large dining table and wall of bookshelves.
A long seating area below a gallery wall of art.

Life in one room
In this compact home, the main room serves as a living room, dining room, office, bedroom and library. How do you fit big art into such a small space? With her large bookshelves providing all the storage on one wall, Carola can dedicate the whole of the opposite wall to a gallery of artwork.

From day to night
Instead of a traditional sofa, Carola chose two spring beds on wheels, positioned end-to-end during the day as a long seating area with lots of cushions. At night, she rolls the two beds next to each other to create her double bed. Holly has her own bedroom, but she often ends up sleeping in the big bed with her mum!

A white kitchen with metallic features.

Upcycle everything
In the kitchen, Carola took out all of the existing storage and recycled the material to make her new kitchen worktop. Everything fits in with her monochrome scheme, from the metallic textures to her pinboard of black-and-white photos and clippings.

Open up your storage
One wall of the kitchen is dominated by floor-to-ceiling metal shelving, where you can find everything you might possibly need for any recipe. Carola has inherited, been given, found or made most of her tools and utensils.

Food stored in metal baskets.
Two magnetic knife racks mounted on a wall.

Everyday displays
One wall of Holly’s bedroom is devoted to floor-to-ceiling shelving, with two glass-door cabinets that put her toys, games and books on show. Try the ALGOT shelving system – you can customise it to fit your room and your storage needs.

A portrait of Carola.

Big collections, small home
Carola has moved a lot during her life and lived in everything from grand apartments to tiny cottages. This small-space apartment is constantly changing – it’s an ongoing creative project. Carola’s motto for a home is simple: the world is full of materials just longing to belong somewhere, serve a purpose, and help make a home.

A floorplan of Carola’s home.

Three-room home for two
Carola and Holly live in the middle of the city, high up in an apartment building with views across the rooftops. Their home comprises a kitchen, one large room and Holly’s room. In the main room they have a large, wide table that takes up a lot of space. But that’s exactly what they wanted.

IKEA FIND IT! book.

More small-space inspiration
Discover even more ideas from homes around the globe where people have turned small spaces into smart spaces.

We love to see our customers get creative with our products. Go for it! But please note that altering or modifying IKEA products so they can no longer be re-sold or used for their original purpose, means the IKEA commercial guarantees and your right to return the products will be lost.

Made by

Interior stylist: Katarina Grundströmer
Photographer: Stellan Herner
Writer: Stina Holmberg