Question: I like the idea of loft condominiums although I’ve ne’er understood minimalist art. What is minimalism, anyway, and are all lofts decorated in this style? Isn’t it too “cold” or austere for most people in a home?
Answer: Minimalism means “indeterminacy” meaning not determined. Inexact in its limits. Indefinite, uncertain, vague. Not yet settled, concluded, or known. Doubtful or inconclusive. This generally means removing “fluff” or ornamentation and paring down to the bare essentials. In home design, it generally means a more open floor plan.
I am a lofts and condominiums realtor based in the Twin Cities of Minnesota. True lofts are renovated open warehouse spaces which is why loft condominiums ar so powerfully associated with minimalism. Beyond that, an open floor plan is non even a part of my key criteria shaping a loft. Many of the historical details preserved in some of these homes-arched vaults, timber pillars, networks of low-lying beams-actually are astatine odds with strict minimalism, which calls for no allusions or references to the outside world whatsoever.
As I have written, my minimum criteria for true lofts are as follows: 1) the exterior walls are either brick or concrete; 2) the unit has ceilings of astatine least ten feet. Usually the ceilings rise betwixt ten and fourteen feet, and sometimes even higher; and 3) large and ample windows.
Therefore, I would say that a loft proprietor can “turn up” reductivism or tone it down almost as much as they so desire!
If you think lofts look “cold” simply because you ar non accustomed to them, there ar lots of pleasurable and exciting things you can do to test the waters. Purely for enjoyment, read news articles that spotlight Japanese homes. You’ll see that it’s not uncommon to plan for the reality that guests will sit on the floor instead of on chairs. Your first response might be “uncomfortable” or “unfinished.” Nevertheless, it can be stimulant to think about. Entire civilizations have found that sitting on the floor can be reposeful because it is so much less constraining!
Meanwhile, pay attention to the children in your life. I’ve noticed that given a choice among many rooms in a house, they often will move their toys to the one that is the least cluttered. Somehow, the simplicity of space frees their minds to give way to imagination. As it turns out, empty nesters and grandparents can be marvelous candidates for loft condos as they transition into new phases of life. If this intrigues you, start by de-junking and paring down one room in your present home, and see if you observe the same result!
For extra reading, I recommend The Big Book of Lofts by Antonio Corcuera and Aitana Lleonart, an oversized book with oversized photos. It covers loft homes from all over the world, including homes reinforced to accommodate children. Just reading through the descriptions will stretch your imagination so you can do justice to the loft condominium option.