In this article, we would really like to talk about how to decorate a loft apartment. But before we get into to that, do you even know what a loft apartment is?
You might have heard the term somewhere. If you have, chances are you’ve heard it used incorrectly. Don’t worry it’s not your fault. Realtors have distorted the meaning of the term by butchering it for their marketing needs.
It’s mostly used by realtors to describe a studio apartment in order to make it sound hip. Unfortunately, a high ceiling alone is not enough to turn an apartment into a loft apartment. Loft apartments were industrial or commercial buildings that were converted into residential buildings.
Imagine an open floor plan. Yes, something like that. A real loft apartment is a large open-home with no walls dividing it and has a high ceiling. By high we mean more than 12 feet high. Aside from these things, these spaces have a completely different look and feel to it.
Think of the characteristics that define an authentic industrial building such as cinder block, exposed bricks, ducts, industrial window hardware and more.
Loft apartments are the embodiment of the live/work without distinction kind of lifestyle. It was the lifestyle propagated and popularized by artists who used these places as their studios and homes.
The Great Thing About Loft Apartments
Let’s look at some of the key defining factors that make loft apartments so terribly attractive then we’ll talk about how to decorate a loft apartment.
- Oh, the Ceilings
Loft apartments are remodeled former commercial buildings. This is why they have vaulted ceilings, usually in the range of ten to fifteen feet. Similarly, this is why even the tiniest lofts feel quite spacious, and this is also why decorating them is a completely different game.
- The Expansive Layout
We tend to associate the lack of walls with crappy studio apartments. But at the same time, it is also like a blank canvas. You literally have free reign without being bound by the artificial limits we call walls.
- The Crude Industrial Look
In most situations, exposed brick walls and ducts is a turnoff. But in the context of industrial architecture, it helps create an antediluvian look. So decorating a loft with that bias can be a bit tricky but also incredibly stimulating.
How to Decorate a Loft Apartment
- Embrace its Roots and Celebrate the Crude
Most new homes these days tend to celebrate congruity. But industrial lofts were around to witness a time long gone. The experience has left it with character and history that we must embrace if we are to truly tap its beauty.
It’s no place for frilly or soft decor. Embrace the neutral feel of the space and add to it with austere forms decor. Of course, the baked brick walls tend to go amazingly with natural-looking wood flooring.
- Engage the Horizon and Be the Meta-Structure
The entire apartment must have a cohesive decor and color. The apartment is, after all, one big open space. Of course, it need not be the same thing throughout, but it should flow and merge like a wave in an ocean.
Everything should complement everything else. Even the bits that sit in stark contrast should tend to assimilate into oneness, yet at the same time, remain completely different.
When dealing with a large open space, you can’t look towards what us mere mortals create for inspiration. The insignificance of the time we’ve spent as a sentient-being restricts the extent of our sight. In fact, most of us have probably never even seen beyond the reach of our arms.
- Define the Space without Categorizing it
Of course, abstraction is beautiful and all immersive. But one thing it is not, and that is practical. If you’re going to live in such a place, you have to define it in order to develop a functional relationship with the space.
We are creatures of habit, and we live most of our lives on autopilot. If you must consciously think about the mundane, you will lose your mind.
This is why you need to define different areas according to your living needs. But if you categorize it, you will snuff the life out of the place. This is why you define it. To do that, use decor and furniture that helps you separate and create private spaces.
You can even create a loft within a loft as your workspace or your sleeping area. Again, you are a creature of habit. Your body needs different associations.
Our minds operate on pattern recognition. It needs different stimuli in order to concentrate on the work we’re doing. Similarly, it needs certain associations to turn down and prepare for sleep. For example, we develop a relationship involving sleep with our bed.
Lighting is an excellent way to define a space without categorizing it. Lighting can alter our state of being without fundamentally altering our surroundings. You can lower lighting fixtures for intimate spaces and let the glow engulf the public spaces.
- Remember to Scale
When working on such a scale, you must be able to scale your perception along with it. If you’re trying to pick out the right chair, you’re stuck in the linear.
Diminutive objects will only pull you deeper. And if you don’t wake up in time, you will merely fascinate at its depth. Despair only leads to aggravating that cycle. The same cycle we so woefully avoid.
In order to achieve such scale, you must nurture a presence. Presence is never about the object itself; it’s about the aura around it. It’s what evokes emotions. Language is a humanly construct, which is why it is insufficient to communicate abstract thought and emotion.
If you can effectively describe what you want from the space, you’re on the wrong wavelength. Try to focus on what it feels like instead of what it looks like.
You can truly experience the experience only if you allow yourself to feel it. You would agree that loft apartments are not very practical, right? Yet, we still like them. We like them in a very irrational and incorporeal way. There is a reason for that.
It is not easy to explain it because language has yet to evolve for us to communicate such abstract notions. That’s exactly why you need to take such an approach where you can’t effectively describe what you’re trying to do. Try to connect with your emotion when you decorate your loft apartment.