Help For Small Spaces! DIY Tips from HauteLook And Designer Kyle Schuneman: Make-Over 1

Urban areas, are some of the most challenging places to personalize a space given that most apartments are rentals and space is tight. That’s why HauteLook teamed with Interior Designer Kyle Schuneman the expert in decorating small spaces, and made over the living spaces of three typical HauteLook shoppers.

Kyle’s first book is coming out this summer: “The First Apartment Book: Cool Design for Small Spaces,”  and used several tips from his book in the makeovers keeping blending the tastes from each apartment dweller, trends that we’re seeing in home décor right now and that California casual chic aesthetic.

KYLE’S TIPS: Arlae – Coastal Chic – Original Retail $5k Hautelook Price under $2k

Arlae has a small one-bedroom, one-bathroom apartment.

(Before Photos)


Kyle’s design makeover and design tips:

Selecting a “Style”

  • Arlae is a California girl and loves the beach and outdoors. So Kyle pulled a calming palette out of the natural coastal color scheme she gravitates towards.


  • Rentals often have boxy rooms without architectural details that give the space charm. To combat this Karl created an accent wall with stenciling
  • Here we kept the pattern to one wall which has more of a casual effect, keeps the room from feeling overdone. It also takes you less time!

Mixing and Matching:

  • Many apartments look “matchy-matchy” when it comes to patterns because people can get carried away buying everything from the same store. According to Kyle “This was one thing that really surprised me about working with HauteLook. You can essentially replicate what an Interior Designer does, and shop directly with the wholesale brands, at great prices. It allows shoppers this whole sense of discovery that you couldn’t get from say, an Ikea or West Elm.”
  • Kyle layered patterns from different brands, which makes a room look chic. When layering, just be sure to keep the color scheme the same and only mix the scale of the patterns. For example, here we have the medium- size stencil pattern on the wall, a big bold stripe on the rug and a small pattern on the side chair.
  • Another misconception is that wood tones need to match perfectly. Don’t be afraid to mix types of woods when furnishing a room. The trick is just to keep the color tones consistent, so it looks casually planned, and not hodge-podge. Here you can see that we have bamboo in the artwork, rustic wood in the coffee table and another wood in the cabinet.

Designing to entertain:

  • Arlae likes to entertain a lot, but seating was always an issue. People didn’t know where to sit, so they ended up sitting on her bookcase or on the floor when they popped by. People need direction- so make seating obvious for them.
  • Here we tucked extra poufs into a corner, which Arlae can pull out when unexpected guests stop by.


  • Arlae had a Sex in the City “shoes in oven” situation happening when I first got here.
  • An easy solution is to turn your display cabinet into a storage cabinet is to line the inside with fabric, as we did here, with this great piece from Imax.
  • A great way to have versatile seating when unexpected guests stop by, or to host that perfect game night, is to tuck extra poufs into a corner, like these from Moe’s home collection.
(After Photos)

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Key Products and prices:

Sofa – Retail $899 $599

Reclaimed Wood Coffee Table – Retail $1299 $585

Side Chair

Retail: $810 $269

See make-over 2: Vintage Modern

About launched their home business in 2009 and it’s now one of their fastest growing categories.  Since the majority of people still think of the brand as just a destination for fashion, accessories and beauty they decided it was time to physically showcase the vast array of home goods available on the site every day.  Being a California-based brand, people tend to think the site completely different design sensibilities than East Coasters. But in reality, their offerings transcend locations.

In terms of merchandise, when the Home category launched in 2009, HauteLook had 77 brand partners.  Today HauteLook has partnered with well over 500 emerging and established brands with an increased interest in rugs, bedding and indoor and outdoor furniture.  Some of the  brands offer are usually only available via interior designer – those brands include Moe’s and IMAX – both used for the NYC Makeovers.

One thought on “Help For Small Spaces! DIY Tips from HauteLook And Designer Kyle Schuneman: Make-Over 1

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s