Nail The Look: New York Loft Chic
Ever admired a gorgeous home and wondered, ‘how can I get that?’. That’s where our new column ‘Nail the Look’ comes in. Every month, we dissect your favourite interior themes and projects, down to the materials, colours and furniture used – to bring you one step closer to achieving the style you love.
We are all for bringing ideas that fit into our local spaces, but sometimes it pays to take a lil’ inspiration from around the world for something different! One popular destination? The Big Apple - with its achingly edgy, refurbished loft spaces as iconic as the city itself.
Towering ceilings, huge windows and a spacious, open-plan layout are all characteristics of an inner-city urban loft. But there’s more to scoring the look than literally buying a loft in NYC – here, we break down the key features, colours and pieces for getting the edgy style in your home.
What is the 'New York Loft' look?
Back in the 1960s – 1970s, lax building laws and an abundance of unused industrial buildings attracted artists in New York City to convert these spaces into ‘lofts’ – inexpensive apartments which could be used for living and working in.
Though bare, unfinished and often missing essential facilities like a kitchen or bathroom area, these huge, empty spaces provided a blank canvas for its creative inhabitants to adapt and put their individual spin on. And due to lacking budgets, many lofts maintained their original structural features - including gritty exposed beams, open spaces and brick walls; all of which have become key features in urban lofts today.
Interior Designer: Asolidplan
Key design features to note:
- The use of natural materials and finishes – think woods, brick walls, cement screed.
- Highlighting the beauty of a building’s raw framework, in the form of exposed beams and pipes, freestanding pillars, etc.
- An open-plan, modular home layout
- Airy, with an emphasis on bringing tons of natural light in
- Creative ways of using the space – mezzanine levels, fun partitions.
- Contemporary furniture (with an industrial slant)
Colours to Try
Light Colours: Winter Hills, White Bucks, Granite Gray
Dark Colours: Tangling Clay, Distant Land, Soft Soot (all from Delux)
It's all about letting the architecture and layout of the apartment shine. Like a blank canvas, natural colours such as cream, brown, white, black and grey make the base of any urban-loft interior.
Interior Designer: Voila
After which, it’s up to you to put on the brushstrokes – whether its baby blues, sunny yellows or rich emerald greens, add pops of colour through décor items and furniture pieces for a lived in, eclectic vibe.
Materials to Use
From left: Cement screed/concrete surface, Craftstone Old Used Brick in California, The Floor Gallery Eco Resilient Flooring in Brown Sawn, Jennings Laminate in Terra Steel and Matt Black
Most houses in Singapore probably won’t come with the same lofty wooden beams, exposed brickwork and concrete flooring as original converted lofts in NYC, but you get our drift. Apply natural finishes such as sun-bleached woods, cement, rusted or brick finishes to achieve the same gritty, industrial look.
Interior Designer: Fuse Concept
Furniture and Accessories to Buy
1. Alayna Sofa, from Etch & Bolts | 2. Aion Pendant Lamp, from Etch & Bolts | 3. D-Bodhi Tuareg Open Bookrack, from Journey East | 4. Mountain Dining Table, from Mountain Teak | 5. United Strangers Brooklyn Storage Cabinet, from Journey East | 6. Preppy Brushstroke Polka Dot Art Print, from Society6 | 7. Wooden Industrial Chair, from Möbler | 8. Ayma Velvet Pillow Pouf, from Urban Outfitters | 9. Armadillo & Co. Sierra Rug, from Affordable Style Files
When it comes filling up an urban loft - it really is up to you! But one thing many have in common is the use of contemporary/industrial-style furnishings in slim, clean-cut lines or boxy, linear shapes.
Likewise, lighting plays an important part in nailing a loft’s bright, airy look (sans full length windows) – get quirky pendants, floor lamps or track lights to achieve that effect.
Interior Designer: Linear Space Concepts
Perhaps an extension of the creative expression commonly associated with loft spaces, attention-grabbing artwork, furniture and décor is another key design feature observed in many loft-inspired homes.
Interior Designer: Linear Space Concepts
So, switch it up with something that’s one of a kind – it could be an avant-garde print, artisan glass ware, or anything that reflects your taste!
You've got the ideas, now it's time to bring them to life.
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