Nothing superfluous: a one-room apartment for a young family

The project was created for a young married couple without children, but with the expectation that with the birth of a child, the apartment could be easily sold. The owners allocated an optimal budget for the renovation, and they considered the design as an investment. The result of the work was a successful mix of expensive accent furniture, affordable finishes, and items found in popular marketplaces.

The view from the windows of the apartment in the Silver Fountain residential complex is incredibly picturesque, which is not so common in the capital. The houses are located on the territory of the Alekseevskaya Water-Lifting Station complex, one of the masterpieces of Moscow architecture, built in 1892 under the supervision of the architect M. K. Geppener. The historical ensemble combines features of pseudo-Russian style, red-brick industrial Gothic, and eclecticism. You can admire it at any time of the year, but it is especially attractive in summer when it is immersed in the greenery of a century-old linden alley.

The residential building was erected using frame-monolithic technology with a hinged façade. The building is equipped with a supply and exhaust ventilation system with air recovery, each floor has technical balconies for the installation of air conditioners and split systems. The absence of load-bearing walls and columns inside the apartments gives freedom in design.


The owners of the apartment are minimalists, they asked the architect to create a concise, functional interior. In the original layout, the “front door-corridor” junction was poorly solved. The latter was narrow, long, and dark, and after installing, say, a wardrobe, it would become quite uncomfortable. Among other disadvantages, there was a narrow passage to the bedroom and an inconvenient location of plumbing devices in the bathroom (on one wall, right next to each other). As always, the redevelopment helped.

Between the kitchen living room and the corridor, the door and part of the wall between the corridor and the bedroom were removed. As a result, there is a spacious entrance area where natural light enters. This made the apartment optically more spacious and airy, while the volume of living spaces was not affected. The corridor and the hallway were visually separated, the door in the bathroom was moved and the bathtub was abandoned in favor of a spacious shower room.

The most difficult area in the implementation of the redevelopment and design project was the bathroom. There are many nuances that are imperceptible at first glance, which require clear tasks and great skill. For example, there is no classic heated towel rail in the room. It didn’t fit into the modern minimalist space at all. An alternative to it was a warm wall – a heating mat built into the wall. It is usually laid on the floor under porcelain tile cladding.

For the inspection hatch, which provides access to the meters and shut-off valves, a pressure model was chosen. The hatch was located on the right side of the washbasin, directly above the shelf. The dimensions of the hatch are multiples of the length of the sides of the facing tiles. One of its edges is exactly in the corner, and the other is at the junction of the tiles, thanks to which it has become almost invisible. The area has high humidity, so the hatch is sealed as much as possible.


At the time of delivery, the apartment consisted of concrete walls, ceiling, and floor. It was necessary to make a screed before laying the final coating. For reasons of economy, we chose wear-resistant laminate. However, in terms of design, it is not inferior to a single-strip engineered board. The laminate was laid on a sound-absorbing cork substrate.

The new partitions were made of foam blocks. The surface of the walls was primed, and leveled with plaster and finishing putty, after which two layers of paint were applied. Behind the stretch ceiling, which, like laminate flooring, helped to optimize the budget, the wiring is hidden; Near the windows, there are niches for hidden cornices: according to the architect, they are an indispensable element of laconic design. The white radiators from the developer “dissolved” against the background of the light walls, and they were left.

The accent wall in the kitchen-living room was decorated with gypsum panels, a financially affordable material, which is nevertheless expensive to install. To minimize costs, we opted for panels with a pattern that does not need putty: small gaps between the slabs only emphasize the relief of the wall once again. After installation, the panels were painted in a color identical to the color of the kitchen cabinets.

The wall behind the headboard is decorated with soft panels. They give a feeling of comfort, and in addition, echo the laconic design. The panels, upholstered in a material that is pleasant to the touch, match the color of the bed upholstery and harmonize with the textiles in the room.

In order to correctly calculate the junction of the ceramic-lined and painted wall fragments, the shower cabin was chosen in advance and the joint line in the project was marked taking into account the size of the wet zone. Despite the fact that there are no additional dividers at the junction of tiles and paint, it is made by repairers perfectly and fits exactly into the edge of the shower enclosure.


In the interior, you can read the characteristic features of modern aesthetics: spacious rooms, a minimum of expressive means, a variety of textures, and furniture of strict outlines. Please note: there are not many storage spaces, but all of them are perfectly suited to the needs of customers, and each item takes up its own space.

The kitchen furniture and the wardrobe in the hall are two stylistically unified, tall, and elongated compositions. This gives the interior integrity and contributes to the optical enlargement of the room. The absence of wall cabinets visually lightens the cooking area, and the set itself is cheaper. However, there is enough storage space in the interior. For example, one of the speakers is completely reserved for a mini-pantry, where there are large items needed in the household: a stepladder, an ironing board, and a vacuum cleaner.

Furniture on relatively high legs is very practical: a robot vacuum cleaner can easily drive under the sofa and the tables. The transformation mechanism makes it possible to use the sofa as an additional bed.

The original hanger in the corridor consists of 30 hooks that visually form a rectangle. It is functional and looks like an art object. The top two rows of hooks are for hats and scarves, the two middle rows are for outerwear, and the bottom two are for bags or belongings of young guests (so that they hang them themselves).

The palette is dominated by light and soft tones, accentuated by gray and black finishes, as well as graphic interior details: lamps, track systems, furniture handles. The neutral color scheme gives a sense of reliability and tranquility.

There are few décor items in the interior – nothing superfluous, or non-functional, but those that do exist attract attention due to the clarity and purity of lines. In the kitchen-living room, the atmosphere is “warmer” thanks to gypsum panels with a graphic pattern. The
latter is echoed by the dark lines of furniture and lamps.

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