Skip to main content

Work, play, repeat: a little living room with endless possibilities

A little studio apartment where the living room is a workspace too. Sound familiar? Even with its small footprint, this living-work area delivers on all fronts, offering up a corner for creative work, a generous sofa for down-time and enough storage – open, closed and secreted away – to keep every object organised and accessible.

A piano next to a vertical arrangement of EKET cabinets. A record player, books and decorative glass dot free surfaces.
A piano next to a vertical arrangement of EKET cabinets. A record player, books and decorative glass dot free surfaces.

Designing a personalised storage system

For many of us across the globe, working from home has become more of a constant than an every-now-and-then treat. If your home is on the smaller side, the transition may have been a challenge. In this living area, an EKET combination of open and closed shelves and cabinets fits the bill perfectly, offering dedicated space for everything the composer who lives here needs to get her job done.

Open and closed storage – books, decorations, and more – made up of a combination of dark-grey and white EKET cabinets.
A piano and a vertical arrangement of EKET cabinets stand side by side. Free surfaces are dotted with decorative items.
A plant pot and other decorations stand on, and in, a row of grey-turquoise wall-mounted EKET cabinets above a piano.

Do you love your things but are short on space?

IKEA interior designer Joseph Abbott has some marvellous tips for how you can hold onto all the things that bring you joy by taking full advantage of open, closed and hidden storage – even in a small space.

Read more about space-maximising storage

Hidden storage for a decluttered look

At first glance, the seating area looks fairly straightforward, but take a closer look and you’ll notice a clever storage solution hidden away! By pulling the sofa slightly away from the wall, there is enough space to hang a shelf for some lighting and decoration. Below, you’ll find a convenient spot to store things you don’t need on a regular basis, as well as a drawer unit placed parallel to the wall for easy access.

See all wall shelves
A green living room with a dark-grey PÄRUP three-seat sofa with chaise longue, and a BORGEBY birch coffee table.
Standing on the wall shelves behind a sofa is a black FÖRNUFTIG air purifier together with framed art and decorations.
SOLKLINT brass table lamps and other decorative items sit on a wall shelf. Beneath the shelf stands a HELMER drawer unit.
A black HELMER drawer unit on castors stands at an angle next to a sofa. Two lit brass lamps are on a shelf behind the sofa.
A natural-plywood KLÄMMEMACKA desk organiser stands on a rug with its sections parted, revealing musical accessories inside.
See all wall shelves

Soft touches for some well-deserved down time

Because storage in this area of the home has been used so effectively, there is still enough space for a generous and super comfortable sofa. Covered in an array of textured cushions, it’s the ideal landing pad after a hard day’s work.

See all sofas
Grey-turquoise EKET wall-mounted shelving units on a living room wall, books and decorations in and around them.
A cluster of textiles, including anthracite HILLARED and grey GULLKLOCKA cushions, and a string instrument on a PÄRUP sofa.
See all sofas

Tones on tones on tones

A monochromatic colour scheme can make a space feel calm and organised without being sparse. Get the look by adding in layers of similar colours.