The idea of loft living has become appealing and desirable to increasing numbers of young people, worldwide. To begin with, what really is a loft? The standard English dictionary defines it as “ a large, usually un-partitioned floor over a factory, warehouse, or other industrial space.” It is indeed like a large studio, with no separation between rooms. Sometimes, there is an extra floor or sleeping area on top of the room, in order to maximize space, rather than an extra room on the side. The lack of walls and other types of dividers makes it trickier to create separate spaces, such as the kitchen area, dining area, living area, etc. within a large room. In this post we round up a few helpful tips for designing the various areas within a loft and also provide inspirational images of a few lofts from Paris, Milan, Berlin and London.
A good way to separate areas in your loft space is to use furniture as dividers. For instance, you can separate an open kitchen and living area by using a high kitchen table or “ bar” and stools. This London loft studio space below resourcefully makes use of naturally colored wooden bookshelves and green plants to separate the “ bedroom” from the living area…
Carpeting or different floor finishes can also help distinguish different areas. The entertainment area can have a different floor finish or carpet than the kitchen area. Rugs can be strategically placed to designate certain areas. For example, a rectangular rug can be placed to mark the hallway entrance. Or a rug can be placed diagonally to lead from one room into another, or it can simply be placed in the middle of an area, with furniture surrounding it to designate it as the living room.
Painting one side of the walls of a room one color, and the other side a different, can also help differentiate between the two. For example, in one space, the left wall can be painted a pale yellow to mark it as the kitchen, whereas the entertainment area can be painted cream or whatever color one wishes.
The type of furniture you use is just as important as how you arrange it all inside a loft. For instance, ottomans and longer, winding couches with extended chaise loungers not only maximize space, but can help corner off an area. Potted plants can also be strategically placed to fill in little gaps or areas that need a bit of separating. Bookshelves and even beds can be pulled out of the walls and can be tucked away during the day, so that the area can be used for something else.
It is also wise to think about what the focal point of such a large space should be. Ideally, it should be the most social area of a home-the living or entertainment room. Logically, this also makes more sense, since the bedroom area cannot be in the middle or very beginning of the space, unless it can be pulled back into the wall. The red and black details of a Milan loft below, incorporates pops of color into the sofa and ottomans to draw attention to the living area. Colorful paintings are also mostly positioned on the walls of the living area, to really bring into focus. Lastly, installing a large, unusual, and dramatic piece in the center of the living area or large loft space, can really serve as the focal point of the entire space, and can ultimately help to balance out the space as a whole.
Sometimes making use of the architecture the actual space has to offer really helps. Columns and doors can help you visualize where you can cut a room off.
The design also has a bit of a theme to it, since the bookshelves and floor are light, natural colored wood and real, green plants are also used as “ natural” dividers.
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Image Courtesy: London, Berlin, Milan and Paris