Roberta Sandenbergh is a retired architect who worked in New York and South Africa and author of SMALL SPACE LIVING: Expert Tips and Techniques on Using Closets, Corners, and Every Other Space in Your Home which introduces readers to the space-expanding concept of “Space Opportunities” that allow you to make the most of neglected spaces in your home. It won both an Independent Publishers Association Medal and a Nautilus Book Award.
Born in Brooklyn (née Stoller), Roberta went to Vassar College, graduated from Pratt Institute’s School of Architecture (as Roberta Bocian) and studied Urban Design at the University of Witwatersrand.
After marrying John Sandenbergh, a South African architect, Roberta spent most of her adult life in his country, where she specialized in residential design. One of her projects won the annual Johannesburg Civic Award and two were featured in local magazines, Garden & Home and Habitat.
Her career took a detour when she became a beta tester for AutoCAD (Computer-Aided-Design) and was given rights to the program through a network of dealers and training centers. She travelled throughout the African continent, giving lectures and demonstrations.
Roberta is known for her illustrated columns on ‘Space Saving Ideas’. They have appeared in the Washington Post (the ‘Design Notebook’ series), the San Francisco Chronicle and the Johannesburg Star. She has also written articles about space saving for SA City Life Magazine and The Home Handyman.
After living on 11 acres in South Africa, Roberta was delighted to downsize to a 500 sq. ft. studio apartment in Manhattan. She loves its coziness and efficiency, and is obsessed with maximizing her living space. She says: “I often waste time and sometimes waste money. But I hate to waste space.”