The art of fitting much more into less – much less

IN MANHATTAN, most folks manage just fine in tiny spaces. Then there’s Sherry Smith’s apartment: 22m², one cat, 50 pairs of shoes, wall-to-wall trinkets, stacked suitcases stuffed with designer clothing for her side business and, just for grins, a piano.

Friends can squeeze into her home – the current record is 10 – but “they can’t wrap their heads around it,” Smith said.

“People are astonished. They can’t believe there’s this room and nothing else,” she added.

Smith, who works as a publicist, says: “While I’ve seen smaller, most people haven’t.”

But in some real estate markets, little is big. In London, a 2.4 by 3-metre flat, originally listed for $145000 (about R1,1-million), has drawn bids as high as $280000 (R2,2-million), in part due to its proximity to the famous Harrods department store.

Smith, who’s been ensconced in her micro-roost for 19 years, is influenced by the same economic force propelling the price on the pint-sized London pad: location. Her Chelsea neighbourhood is the hip home to chic restaurants and art galleries. But her rent is just $1075 (R8000) a month – a massive bargain for Manhattan.

Smith describes herself as a “micro maximalist”.

She also runs an eBay business out of the apartment, selling gently-used apparel.

The recessed kitchen has a sink, full-sized refrigerator and oven. “I don’t have to mop the floor. A sponge is just fine.” © NBC News

Leave a Reply