JEN CHU: I loved the idea of a room just be a bed room– literally just a room of a bed. Because it’s so small, it can’t really be anything else, and you can’t really fit any other furniture in it, you might as well just make the one focal piece really pop. I’m Jen Chu. I am an interior decorator and art director for TV, and this is my 78-square-foot Bedroom in Brooklyn. I’ve done art direction for Project Runway, for the latest Real World in Portland. So I’ve had the privilege of working on a lot of things that are sort of like household names. My bedroom is a 1.5 apartment, as they say. I live in the 0.5 and my roommate lives in the one full bedroom. My room is just unusually small. This is probably the space that I’ve designed that reflects my style the most. When it comes to my personal space, it just makes me want to really pare it down to the things that I love so I’m not surrounded by too much extra clutter. I knew from the get-go that I’d always wanted a canopy bed. And for the longest time, I thought that your bedroom would have to be huge to be able to pull it off.
But then I realized maybe a really small room would be able to accommodate one too. This bed is actually one multipurpose piece of furniture. It is not just a bed, but it also serves as a seat because I sometimes sit with my legs dangling under the shelf. The bed has trap doors underneath, where I keep two giant pieces of luggage.
The shelving unit is really essential, I think, to the design of the space. It allows me to display a lot of the things that I’ve collected throughout my travels. One of my favorite things to do is go through really high end art magazines and rip out pages of beautiful work and frame them. I know that it’s kind of a cheap way of going about it, but I like that because you can periodically change things and you don’t have to feel so obligated to feature a piece that you might have spent a lot of money on. I was looking for drawer pulls for something else entirely. As I was rummaging through all the bins, I saw these amazing lion drawer pulls. So I put them in a grid and I display my earrings on them. I knew from the get-go I wanted a minimal shade.
So I bought a super cheap shade from Home Depot and I put text on it. I actually cut all the letters out of black contact paper, and I took a quote out of Apocalypse Now, which is one of my favorite films. I’m really lucky that I have a little entry vestibule coming into the room, so I have a place to store all of my things. It gets dark in the vestibule, and it gets dark in that corner of the bedroom. And I love the fact that I can put one lamp that’s right in between two rooms and just pull it back and forth. I think when people come into my space, usually they say first, oh my god. It’s so small. And then secondly they say, it’s actually bigger than I thought it would be based on the pictures. I think people are surprised that when you’re actually in here, it doesn’t feel claustrophobic all all. It has a really warm, net-like feeling to it. When I was little, I thought I wanted to live in an RV.
So in a weird way, I think living in a tiny space is fulfilling a childhood dream of mine. It did not look like this when I got here. And I put a lot of work into it. But I’ve been really happy here. They’re going to have to drag me out kicking and screaming. I don’t want to move, so hopefully I’ll be able to stay here for a while. -Are you a social media darling? Do you like to hang out on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, or even Tumblr? If so, you can check us out at all those places, or, of course, you can just click Subscribe right here to see what we’ve got going on. .