Lofty inspirations

Well, it’s only been about 10 months, but Joe and I are itching to move back downtown. Last January, we traded in a one bedroom apartment in a large high rise for a ginormous, 1800 square foot Edwardian flat out by Golden Gate Park. The amount of space we’d be getting seemed like a good trade off for the somewhat cozy (cramped?) quarters we’d been living in for three and a half years.

But man, we miss living downtown. We miss the energy, the vibrancy, the accessibility to so many things. We miss living near the water. And we miss the sunnier weather!

Strangely enough, we have determined our new place is TOO big. It has a much less open floorplan, given the age of the home, whereas in our old place, we were used to being near each other when we were at home. These days, if I’m in my office and Joe’s in the den watching TV, we feel very separated. And we like each other. We want to be near each other.

I admit, this is not a terrible problem to have.

In any case, for as long as we’ve lived in San Francisco we have always wanted to live in a loft in the South Beach area, not far from where we were originally living. We are officially on the lookout for a great space to move to after the new year, and though we both admit we’re slightly crazy for moving after ONE YEAR, we’re hoping that the next space will be for the long haul.

Earlier this week, I was watching old episodes of Color Splash: Miami on HGTV. Have I ever mentioned how much I really like David Bromstad? I think the guy is pretty talented, especially in his use of color. Some of his makeovers can be a little zany for my taste, but one could never call them boring. One of the episodes I caught was of a loft makeover, and it left me totally inspired for if/when we find our new place! Check out how David tackled these 20 foot ceilings:

BEFORE:

Yikes. Lots of white going on. No storage. No layering of textures.

AFTER:

WOW, right? David framed out the strangely placed windows to give the illusion that they’re floor to ceiling. He also hung some gorgeous light gray sheers to bring softness to the somewhat industrial space.

The sputnik chandeliers. The giraffe rug. The color palette! I die.

(Ignore all the random HGTV lighting equipment…)

With lofts, the one thing I worry about is setting up the space so that the living area feels separate from the dining feels separate from the kitchen. Know what I mean? I think given the fairly small space, David did an amazing job. I really love the dining area. It’s contemporary but not too modern (and those chairs — $99 Tobias chairs from Ikea — are a great find). There’s still warmth and friendliness in this space — too often I see lofts decorated in a way that makes them feel so cold and unwelcoming.

What do you think of David’s makeover? Pretty good for just a couple days work, right?

{Image Credit: David Bromstad}

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0 Comments

  1. 10.8.10
    Betsy said:

    The way he framed out those windows is genius!

  2. 10.8.10
    Morgan said:

    Agreed, the windows are so genius! Good luck on the hunt for a new spot, V!

  3. 10.22.10

    Hmm. I like both the “before” and “after” versions and also dislike aspects of each. The window treatments are really inventive and nicely done but, in a way, I feel like you may as well embrace that kind of industrial look if you’re choosing to live in a space like that. If not, then maybe that’s just not the right space for you.

    The “after” [though lovely] reminds me a bit of the kinds of suburban homes that feature “loft-like” spaces, or whatever the developers call them to make fledgling suburbanites feel a bit more urban.

    In our loft, we have funky stacked windows in our big, main space. Their wood frames are gorgeous, and there is a nice, open view of downtown. We decided not to cover them up at all; you can see a photo here. We only have curtain in the bedroom, for obvious reasons. We really like the relative severity of our apartment and chose to work with that, rather than against it.

    On a side note, I know exactly what you mean about being in a central location and missing open spaces. We’ve lived in apartments where those two things really, really drove us nuts. Good luck with your search!

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