SMALL SPACE: FRESH OUTLOOK
Custom-built furniture, reclaimed materials, and stylish bins elevate the look and function of a Portland, Oregon, couple’s compact loft.
Clever DIY tricks and repurposed items help a small loft live large.
WHEN FIRE BROKE OUT
in Val and Joey Fishman’s Portland, Oregon, loft, the floor and 12 inches up the wall were ruined. Instead of letting this catastrophe get them down, the couple viewed it as an opportunity to customize the space and make the unit truly feel like their own. They also added lots of creative storage to help the 889-squarefoot unit, located in one of the city’s oldest buildings, feel much larger than its actual footprint would suggest.
After replacing the floor and appliances, the couple focused on taking stock of what items they actually needed. “Essentially, we have always been proponents of living small,” Joey says. “We tried to toss everything we don’t use on a regular basis.”
What they kept, they put into containers in a pair of bookcases in the main room, sorted by category. New furniture throughout the loft creatively enhances available storage space, and reclaimed materials mix industrial chic style with vintage warmth for a mood that’s at once comfortable and contemporary.
OPEN AND AIRY
The loft is primarily one big space, so homeowners Val and Joey Fishman set up distinct zones through the use of area rugs and furniture groupings, above. A desk in a window bump-out creates a cozy office in the far corner.
A pair of bookcases at one end of the kitchen, right, holds bins and baskets to organize exercise equipment, cleaning supplies, and pet food and toys.
Val used a chalk pen and stencils on chalkboard fronts to label matching crates, below. She painted paw prints and other dog-related designs on baskets of pet gear.
Joey crafted the coffee table, below right, out of two wooden pallets. Hollow inside, it offers a handy place to stash items when guests visit.
Corral reading material inside shallow baskets or trays.