08/01/2011 07:05 pm ET | Updated Oct 01, 2011

Manhattan Shoebox Apartment: A 78-Square-Foot Live-In Closet (Video)

Luke Clark Tyler is in a serial relationship with tiny homes. His last New York City apartment was just 96 square feet. His current place is even smaller.

When I visited Luke in his 78-square-foot shoebox studio, he had his back to one wall while reading on the couch and his feet reached right to the other wall. He admits to having a close relationship with the wall, but says it's an excuse to not buy an ottoman.

Life in a closet

His live-in closet is too narrow to fit a bed lengthwise, but using a bit of plywood and 2x4s he built his own custom bed/couch.

He keeps his clothes, plates, microwave, books, spices and shaving and cleaning supplies in a large built-in cabinet. The rest of his kitchen is a tiny refrigerator that helps hold up his desk (he works for home as a contract architect).

A microwave kitchen

While he admits he misses being able to cook a real meal -- though he's vegetarian so eats a lot of vegetables and nuts and can even microwave eggs -- Luke doesn't see living small as a sacrifice.

He loves living in the heart of New York City -- his place is in Midtown Manhattan's Hell's Kitchen -- and he likes paying just $750/month (cheaper than the shared housing he could find in the area).

A simple home

Perhaps it helps that his neighbors live in similarly sized studios -- he shares a bathroom with 3 other tenants on his floor -- but he is happy in what he calls his "Midtown Mansion" or, more simply, home.

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