Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Inspiration Board: Vintage Industrial Loft

Love the look of an urban loft?  Do exposed brick walls, galvanized metal surfaces, and city views make you swoon?  Just because your apartment is located in a small town doesn't mean it can't have big city style.  We've rounded up 20 items to integrate into your space to achieve that vintage, industrial, urban look that is oh-so-very cool.  Industrial and vintage decor is popping up in stores all over the place, but you'll also find treasures at architectural salvage dealers, vintage stores, thrift shops, and garage sales.  Mix different metals (iron, copper, bronze).  Combine different textures (brick, burlap, rustic wood).  And include art and accessories that call to mind city vibes (skylines, maps, street signs).  

Get the look: 

1. Pull a few metal work stools up to your kitchen counter/bar.  Don't worry about matching the shapes or colors.  The more eclectic, the better... as shown with this pairing of a round-seated stool with a rectangular stool.

2. Store everyday essentials within sight and close at hand using metal wire baskets. In the bathroom: bath, hair, and beauty products or toiletry items.  In the kitchen: olive oil, spices, oven mitts.  In the living room: remote controls or magazines.  

3. Keep cool and look cool with a vintage-inspired but totally modern fan like this oscillating, oil-rubbed bronze fan.  

4. In the bathroom or kitchen, lather up with soap from a mason jar dispenser.  

5. Scope out antique stores and Etsy for vintage city maps to hang on your walls as art.

6. Lighting choices may seem small, but make a big difference. Illuminate your desktop workspace with an industrial task lamp in a shiny, polished nickel finish.

7. Besides maps, typographic prints featuring simple quotes will blend in nicely with your urban-industrial theme without overwhelming or cluttering the walls.  

8. It's all in the details.  Ditch the standard electronic version and place a vintage metal alarm clock on your nightstand instead.  

9. Stow away dvds, chargers, extra office supplies, and even toiletries in small metal trunks or lockers.

10. Enjoy your cup of coffee or tea in style... drink it from a white porcelain cup rimmed with bold, cast iron gray.

11. Swapping out your plastic hampers in favor of industrial mesh hampers is a small feat that will make even your dirty laundry look more citified and chic.  

12. Avoid any fussy, floral, or frou-frou patterns on your textiles.  Instead update your floor with a rug featuring clean lines, bold stripes, and masculine tones.

13. To spruce up the couch or bed, opt for burlap or linen pillows printed with mechanical or vintage illustrations.  

14. Use gears as sculptural art or accessories throughout your space.  These industrial gear bookends are ideal.  

15. Don't have a bustling, urban landscape outside your window?  Instead, outfit your wall with a large photograph of your favorite cityscape.  

16. A worn leather sofa or chair in warm brown tones or black will fit right into your "urban" apartment.

17. Look for rustic furniture made from salvaged industrial materials like carts and wagons, or that is inspired by such.

18. Street signs are perfect small-scale pieces of art for nooks and crannies in your place.  Hang one in the bathroom over the mirror or above the cupboards in your kitchen.

19. Brighten up with a vintage marquee sign that doubles as accent lighting and wall art.  (This arrow is a statement-making symbol, but marquee signs come in letters as well!)  

20. Wish your apartment had exposed brick wall?  Fake it a little with faux brick wallpaper.  Don't wallpaper your walls!  (That's probably not allowed in your lease.)  Instead, cut a large portion and frame it as big, bold art that calls to mind the brick walls you so envy.

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