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Opening Times (GMT): Mon to Thur - 8:30 - 5:00 Fri - 8:30 - 4:00
Wherever you live in the world, you probably wouldn't have to travel too far to experience loft living. Converted former industrial spaces of all shapes and sizes are popular in many of the world's largest cities. However, we appreciate that not everyone who loves the Luxe Loft style has a vast light and airy space at their disposal.
If you're obsessed with the Luxe Loft style but have a space with more conventional proportions, you can still incorporate the key elements of this look to create a similar Downtown New York aesthetic.
As traditional 'lofts' are typically converted warehouses or old industrial buildings, that particular fabric of the building is often left exposed. This means raw materials like brickwork, ironwork or even concrete have become key design features. To achieve this look in your space you could try removing the plaster of one wall to reveal the bricks beneath. If your home has plasterboard walls, then you can simply cheat. Try 'Brick Slips', these are essentially thin slices of real bricks that can be applied to any wall like tiles with mortar applied afterwards. They are incredibly authentic if done correctly. There’s also a great deal of exposed brick and concrete wallpapers available, that are not only very cool, but also create a raw, industrial feel. We suggest keeping it to one or two hero walls rather than a full room, too much textural surfaces can make a room feel smaller and overly industrial.
Modern open plan style interiors were directly born out of traditional loft living. Large windows and lots of daylight are all things that makes loft living so appealing. With this in mind you may need to knock the odd wall down to create the light, wide, open space you want. However, always ask an expert before brandishing the hammer to make sure the wall isn't load bearing. Another trick is to paint any remaining plaster walls bright white. This creates a sharp, crisp contrast to the bare brick and bounces any light around the room. Larger spaces can be visually divided up with black framed, glazed partitions to emulate the original warehouse windows in the SoHo lofts of the 50s.
Lofts are all about creating unique character and displaying your eclectic tastes. If you have a big space then think art gallery. A vast space can behave like a neutral canvas for an eclectic blend of key pieces. Don't be afraid to mix design classics like a 1954 Florence Knoll Sofa by Mies van der Rohe with interesting flea market finds and contemporary pieces. Try placing an iconic Shaws Belfast Sink on a vintage cabinet in your bathroom for a touch of industrial luxury. Whatever your taste, furniture should make a bold statement in the space, like placing a Jeff Koons sculpture in the multi-story car park. It’s this diversity of styles that make the Luxe Loft work.
Art placed itself at the heart of the loft living story in early 1950s New York, when struggling artists began living in their inexpensive studio spaces, in the former manufacturing district of SoHo (read more here). One disadvantage of the large walls and high ceilings in a loft, is that it can feel cold and stark. A great way to avoid this is by going big on art. Displaying large, bold artwork creates a sense of warmth, displays your personality and creates a talking point for guests.
A good loft doesn’t deny its roots. It is proud of its past and not afraid to show it off. It is all about the mixing of materials – wood, concrete, marble, ceramics, glass and metal. Natural unfinished materials add to the industrial look, provide texture and get better with age as the patina develops over time. Contrast the industrial by investing in good quality fixtures and fittings. Premium bathroom furniture like Shaws fireclay sinks and brassware by Perrin & Rowe can really accentuate luxury.
The great thing about loft living is anything goes. Be brave, be bold, and display your personality. After all, loft living born out of art, and still remains one of the most bohemian ways to live.
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