Inside a chic colorful London apartment that was once home to George Orwell

Be inspired by this diddy one-bedroom flat that's modest rooms are lesson in small space design

Small colorful London apartment
(Image credit: The Modern House)

The property

Situated in a Grade II-listed Victorian mansion block in West London that was once home to George Orwell, this tiny apartment is a lesson in small space living. Despite its small footprint (just 509 sq ft) the rooms of this modern home are light and airy, and every bit as elegant as spaces twice the size. 

A minimal (but by no means bland) color palette, clever layouts and lots of build-in storage really maximize the space, making it feel light, airy, and open. There's lots to be inspired by here if you are a small space dweller...

Small colorful London apartment

(Image credit: The Modern House)

Living room

Small colorful London apartment

(Image credit: The Modern House)

Despite its small proportions, this living room feels elegant, open and filled with natural light. The classic wall paneling, cleverly creates the allusion of more height, giving the compact space a lofty feel and gives the impression of a much larger space.

Small colorful London apartment

(Image credit: The Modern House)

Note the layout and choice of furniture too. No bulky sofa here blocking light and breaking up the space – instead, four accent chairs face into the middle of the room, taking the place of a sofa but adding much less visual clutter. 

Small colorful London apartment

(Image credit: The Modern House)

And nothing is pushed up against walls either as you often find with small spaces, instead the larger pieces of furniture float, again creating the impression of a much bigger room. Instead of using the edges of the room as the boundaries, a large area rug is used to anchor the furniture.

Small colorful London apartment

(Image credit: The Modern House)

Kitchen 

Small colorful London apartment

(Image credit: The Modern House)

The colorful kitchen was designed by Neptune, and painted in a fabulous peachy hue that feels classic but fun and creative too, and pairs perfectly with dark charcoal cabinetry. 

Small colorful London apartment

(Image credit: The Modern House)

The simple layout of the single span of cabinetry, and a bespoke dresser opposite makes the most of the space and yet it doesn't feel cramped or overcrowded. There's even a dining nook tucked at one end. 

Small colorful London apartment

(Image credit: The Modern House)

Bedroom 

Small colorful London apartment

(Image credit: The Modern House)

The bedroom leads on from the living room and has a similar soft neutral color palette, again making it feel much lighter, airier and bigger. Built-in storage really maximizes the space and doesn't fill the room with furniture. The large headboard with a pull-out bedside table provides all the space needed and the adjoining dressing room has ample room for clothes. 

Tucking the bed into the room horizontally is not only practical (no having to dive onto the bed from one end) but also gives a very cozy, den-like feel that works perfectly with the smaller proportions. 

Small colorful London apartment

(Image credit: The Modern House)

Bathroom

Small colorful London apartment

(Image credit: The Modern House)

The tongue-in-groove paneling gives the small bathroom a mix of both traditional and contemporary elegance, paired with the monochrome graphic wallpaper aby Zoffany. The Edwardian style fitting are a nice nod to the building's original features.  The walk-in shower with a very minimalist frame doesn't break up the room so light easily flows around the space.

Small colorful London apartment

(Image credit: The Modern House)
Hebe Hatton
Hebe Hatton

Hebe is the Digital Editor of Livingetc; she has a background in lifestyle and interior journalism and a passion for renovating small spaces. You'll usually find her attempting DIY, whether it's spray painting her whole kitchen, don't try that at home, or ever changing the wallpaper in her hallway. Livingetc has been such a huge inspiration and has influenced Hebe's style since she moved into her first rental and finally had a small amount of control over the decor and now loves being able to help others make decisions when decorating their own homes. Last year she moved from renting to owning her first teeny tiny Edwardian flat in London with her whippet Willow (who yes she chose to match her interiors...) and is already on the lookout for her next project.