In the US, loft apartments are traditionally former industrial buildings and warehouses which have been turned into residential dwellings. They often feature high ceilings, exposed pipes, brick walls, and beams. Usually, loft apartments are open plan and lack internal walls except for perhaps partitions separating toilets and bathrooms from the main living areas for privacy.
Loft apartments have become increasingly popular thanks to them frequently featuring in movies and tv shows and being portrayed as cool, modern homes for young city dwellers. Many a young movie fan has dreamt of owning a loft apartment with views across the New York skyline. Due to the increased demand for these unique homes, developers have mimicked the high ceilings and open plan layouts of these renovated buildings in their new build developments. If you have had a dream like this, check out New York City homes for sale online, and your dreams might just come true!
Although loft apartments are open plan, some can lack storage space and character. If you are lucky enough to have purchased a cool, industrial residence, here are some tips on how to make the most of your space.
If you own lots of stuff but want to hide it away to maintain the open plan, uncluttered feel of your loft apartment, get smart with your storage methods.
Ingenious items of furniture can hide your clutter away in a chic manner. Scour modern furniture stores for cleverly designed storage stools and benches that have a seat that lifts up to reveal internal storage. Find coffee tables that have drawers built in underneath them or have tops that can be slid open or removed to expose hidden compartments.
Some chairs and sofas have storage hidden in the armrests or underneath cushions. The minimalist aesthetic of your home will be conserved when you are able to fill your home with innovative storage-concealing furniture. Such items are invaluable when floor space is limited, and you need to reduce clutter.
If your loft apartment has very high ceilings, you could utilize the maximum amount of space by building a mezzanine level bedroom with ladder access. If this is not possible, you could purchase a high sleeper bed that provides storage space underneath for a wardrobe, sofa, chest of drawers, or desk. A mezzanine floor still retains the open-plan feel of the apartment while giving an extra level of the floor in a space that would otherwise be unused and wasted. Having a sleeping area at this high level will also provide a degree of privacy and peace for people sleeping.
If you have young children, bunk beds or even triple bunks can provide comfortable sleeping solutions that take advantage of high ceilings and any space restrictions. Standard single or double divan beds with storage drawers built-in or ottoman beds with a hydraulic lever to lift up the whole mattress and base to reveal a vast storage area are great space-saving solutions.
To minimize the overcrowding of furniture, you may want to consider investing in a quality sofa bed that is not only wonderfully luxurious to sit on but converts into a sofa bed that is comfortable enough to sleep on every night. Sofa beds have improved dramatically over the years and are no longer the lumpy, bumpy, frilly monstrosities that were only good for emergency sleep solutions when people came to visit. Nowadays, sofa beds are sleek, modern, quick, and easy to maneuver.
Kitchens in loft apartments are often relatively small because they need to be mainly fitted to a wall to allow access holes for incoming electricity wiring, gas pipes, and outgoing waste pipes – walls are limited in open-plan apartments.
When designing a small kitchen, you need to be smart and utilize every square inch of space. Modern kitchens have plenty of creative solutions to make the most of what space you have, and it pays to visit some stores, find a kitchen style that you like and sit down with one of the store advisors who can design your kitchen according to your room measurements, your specifications, and your taste.
Space-saving solutions for kitchens include smaller kitchen appliances such as dishwashers, refrigerators, and stoves that are narrower than standard white goods. Buying such items means that you needn’t skimp on luxury, even when space is limited.
For mealtimes, you could install a long kitchen island with bar stools to sit on. If space is very lacking, you may want to consider an island on wheels that can be wheeled into the center of the kitchen when in use and moved away when it’s no longer required. If you prefer a proper dining table, invest in an expanding table that can be adjusted in size according to the number of diners you have. Dining sets are also available, which have chairs that are shaped like a pizza slice and slide right underneath a round table when not in use. Other sets have tables that fold down to a slim block with a storage compartment for the matching folding chairs.
The Sky is the Limit
If your loft apartment does lack square footage, you really must take full advantage of the above-average ceiling height if you are lucky enough to have it.
If you are handy at DIY, build some shelves and cupboards from floor to ceiling. If you want to maintain a streamlined, minimalist look, attach doors to the fronts so that everything is concealed. Be smart with storage solutions – build drawers into any staircase you might have or make a room underneath the stair if there is enough space. If you have a dog, you could create a kennel under the stair or design a fun playhouse for your kids, which can also be used as a storage room for their toys.
You could build floor to ceiling bookshelves for some added theatrics and install a ladder on wheels onto them to enable you to reach the very top shelves.