I’m currently facing two unique challenges in my one-bedroom Brooklyn apartment. First, I’m starting to run out of space. I’ve neatly decorated the place with all sorts of furniture, but I’m only accumulating more stuff and my apartment isn’t getting any bigger. I can keep stacking stuff up in my closet or throw some things in boxes and hide them below a bed, but I’m more enticed by the idea of practical storage solutions that also work as furniture. I don’t just want to throw a big plastic bin under my bed and call it a day.
That other, more wonderful, challenge is that I have a cat now. Since getting this little cow in December, I’ve had to carve out some extra space for her. I converted a tiny little nook into a sort of bedroom complete with scratching post, toys, and a bed, but everything the light touches is her domain, apparently. If my apartment is going to sustain the wave of cat toys my family is going to send every holiday, I’d need to get clever.
As it turns out, there’s no shortage of ways to cohabitate with a space-hogging cat. In my research, I quickly unearthed a host of clever human furnishings that doubled as cat furniture. I’d be able to kill two birds with one stone and my needy angel would be none the wiser. A perfect crime.
Secret Litter Box | $90
Because of my limited space, I could only pick two really good options. That meant passing on some truly wild furniture that would have been very funny to own. Case in point, this fake plant that’s actually a litter box. If you love having plants around the house, but your cat eats them all, this evergreen decoration can withstand even the fiercest paws. It’s a whole fake plastic planter, but the vase is hollow. The idea is that you throw your cat’s litter box in there to beautify the whole ordeal. My cat’s litter box is admittedly a problem, as it takes up a fair amount of space. I didn’t go this route as it didn’t fit my storage needs, but it’s admittedly a funny idea that would help maintain my apartment’s leafy aesthetic.
The runner-up here is this ingenious ottoman that doubles as a cat bed. I love everything about this. You can use it as a comfy foot rest when lounging around or flip the top over and throw some snacks, remotes, and what have you on there. All the while, your cat sleeps underneath, unaware that you have tricked her into leaving you alone when you’re trying to chill. This didn’t quite work with my current living room set up, but this would have been an immediate no brainer in a bigger space. I could see throwing some of my cat’s toys in here to declutter my floor.
Those two options tickled me, but storage was still the goal. Two products ended up making the cut. The best pick-up was Frisco’s collapsible pet step. The stairs themselves are actually two big storage bins underneath the steps. When they’re closed up, they’re just a normal pet step. My cat is in love with this thing, since she no longer has to leap up to reach my bed. She can walk up the stairs, though she mostly just falls asleep on them. So I suppose this is kind of a cat bed too, if your pet just loves laying on soft things. I filled the boxes with loose DVDs and books that I didn’t have space for, and it has seriously cleared up my overflowing shelves.
The last piece of the puzzle was Frisco’s side table, which doubles as a litter room. This white table features a hole that your cat can climb into. You can either throw a litter box in there or make it into a little cat bed (I did the latter). At first, I just thought this was a funny piece of design, but it’s practicality quickly became clear. It gave me a table to display random collectibles or throw family photos on, but also gave my cat another place to explore. While she hasn’t taken to it quite like the steps, it’s become an important statement piece that’s allowed me to display some of my favorite collectibles instead of tossing them in boxes.
At this point, I’ve solved just about every issue I had. The cat is happy, my shelves are cleaner, and my closet isn’t stuffed with boxes. My furry roommate and I can now live together in harmony while I’ve tricked her into thinking these treats were just for her. She has no idea that she’s sleeping right above the script for Borat Subsequent Moviefilm. Nobody tell her.