I have always been fascinated by loft living. I’ve never owned or rented a loft and likely never will, but they’re part of my imagined alternate life! Of course, I would have no interest in a new construction with drywall and white condo-like expanses. A real loft needs:
- To be renovated from industrial or commercial space
- To give the illusion it’s funky and real, and hasn’t always been chic real estate
- Industrial elements such as concrete floors or a garage door
- A row of windows at least as tall as you are
- Exposed brick on at least one wall
- Wooden beams, and/or plumbing/heating pipes overhead, or commercial ceiling fans
- Salvaged materials such as glass block or bathroom tile
- Open floor plan – except for bathroom, I hope
- Huge scale custom-built furniture such as bookcases or dining table
- Room to hang massive artworks
- Ladders or a metal spiral staircase (if there is an upper level, i.e. an actual “loft”)
- Pendulum lighting
- Mid-century modern furniture (e.g. 1950s/60s/70s retro)
- View of a fire escape and the wall of the next building
- Obligatory sounds of traffic and sirens, and ever-present light from street
Naturally, a renovated Brooklyn brownstone would also suffice.
The romance of a loft is that you are completely immersed in city life to the point that you don’t need amenities like green space, parking, quiet, or interior walls. And you have room to tackle projects on a grand scale like a Jackson Pollock-style painting or a cast bronze sculpture. Or you can work as an editor at a little imprint of a literary publishing house and have your co-workers over for a glass of wine before you go to the new exhibit opening at the gallery.
I have a ridiculous amount of freedom to do what I like with my spare time, and somehow I am not choosing to do these things, and not feeling the urge to land in TriBeCa or Williamsburg any time soon. But I still have little flights of fancy that everything I need is within 10 blocks and I can just claim my little refuge in the middle of the bustling city.
Oh, and if any of these designers would like to donate their time to doing up my loft, be my guest!
My actual living space:
In my dreams (the ones where I’m not living childless and alone in the woods), I live in a beautiful boho loft in Montreal, drink expensive wine and have extremely intelligent people hanging off of my every word.
Its fun to dream about, eh?
Well, kids will hang off your every word, as long as you only speak about fudge and ice cream…
I love this post… cause i live in a loft! In Sydney
To be renovated from industrial or commercial space – TICK was once a technical school, and there’s all sorts of weird ceiling levels cause of it
To give the illusion it’s funky and real, and hasn’t always been chic real estate – TICK (well not entirely sure what you mean)
Industrial elements such as concrete floors or a garage door – TICK (but darn cold in winter, I have carpet in the loft bedroom)
A row of windows at least as tall as you are – TICK (though not as ‘character’ as I’d hoped… just glass sliding doors to my itty bitty balcony which is not common with a loft)
Exposed brick on at least one wall – 😦 NO… could a ‘cover’ a wall in brick faces? Or wallpaper?
Wooden beams, and/or plumbing/heating pipes overhead, or commercial ceiling fans – 😦 NO (they’ve boxed in all the pipes, but every morning I shower ‘with’ my neighbours… as I hear each of them!)
Salvaged materials such as glass block or bathroom tile – NO
Open floor plan – except for bathroom, I hope – TICK – only door other than the front door is for the bathroom (and living alone, I feel odd when I shut it (for company))
Huge scale custom-built furniture such as bookcases or dining table – no… though the bookcase idea tickles me a little… The Dining table is just IKEA, but it’s stainless steel, like the kitchen!
Room to hang massive artworks – TICK (not for the $$ to buy some! I am thinking of framing a scarf which is almost a metre squared)
Ladders or a metal spiral staircase (if there is an upper level, i.e. an actual “loft”) – 😦 NO, though I did try to source a ladder for deocartive purposes (old, wooden). I have a staircase
Pendulum lighting – TICK (I think… I changed from wall mounted, which is common in lofts, to two ceiling mounted pendant lights, looks great imo!)
Mid-century modern furniture (e.g. 1950s/60s/70s retro) – No, just not my style, though across the road there are many vendors of this style
View of a fire escape and the wall of the next building – No – I have a large playing field… which is lovely. exposed/external fire escapes are uncommon in Australia
Obligatory sounds of traffic and sirens, and ever-present light from street – YES! I have drug addicts and crazies bickering at all hours… but it’s all part of the charm!
And I have a car space (underground, luxury in the rain!). You made me feel oh so proud with my purchase (I sometimes still have buyers remorse!)
Aagh, you are giving me loft envy! You should definitely turn your scarf into wall deco!
Thank you for helping me see all the greatness (and hide all the not so greatness I sometimes focus on!) Loving your blog
PS At first I thought you lived in Sydney Nova Scotia which is near me 🙂
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