Warehouse loft by Form Design Architecture
with floorboards salvaged from a chapel

| 12 comments
 

The floors of this open-plan apartment in London by local studio Form Design Architecture are covered with timber boards salvaged from an old Welsh chapel (+ slideshow).

London Warehouse Loft by Form Design Architecture

Named Bermondsey Warehouse Loft, the residence is located within an industrial building that was once used as a tin and zinc factory, but now houses offices and apartments.

London Warehouse Loft by Form Design Architecture

Form Design Architecture, whose own offices are located on the building's ground floor, was originally asked to make minor alterations to the apartment, but ended up refitting the entire space and creating a living space based on a New York loft-conversion.

London Warehouse Loft by Form Design Architecture

As well as the pine floorboards, the interior features exposed brick walls that have been painted white.

London Warehouse Loft by Form Design Architecture

"Having previously lived in New York, [the client] was keen for the apartment to feel more like a warehouse loft reflecting the industrial character and scale of the space," said architect Mike Neale.

London Warehouse Loft by Form Design Architecture

Existing partitions were removed and the space was loosely divided into different areas for sleeping, exercising, eating, relaxing and working, each with adjustable lighting.

London Warehouse Loft by Form Design Architecture

An island of cupboards and surfaces forms the kitchen, while a sleeping area is concealed behind a sliding door.

London Warehouse Loft by Form Design Architecture

"The client is actually someone who likes things to be quite organised, and we spent quite a lot of time with him to really work out how he would use the space, without actually physically dividing it up," Neale told Dezeen. "Perhaps 'zones without walls' would describe it."

London Warehouse Loft by Form Design Architecture

"Obviously some of these elements are fixed, like the kitchen and the long desk across the end, but the remainder is intended to be flexible and adaptable," Neale added.

London Warehouse Loft by Form Design Architecture

Photography is by Charles Hosea, unless otherwise stated.

Here's a project description from the architects:


Bermondsey warehouse loft

Fully reconfigured open-plan loft apartment within a converted warehouse with flexible zones for dining, relaxing and exercise plus washing/dressing/utility spaces concealed within a ‘floating’ white acrylic solid surface-clad block.

London Warehouse Loft by Form Design Architecture

Our client initially approached us to carry out some minor alterations to his apartment to better meet his needs. In discussion with him, the conclusion was reached that, having already had the apartment refitted once which did not work for him, the existing fit-out should be completely stripped out and a more radical approach adopted.

Detailed discussions established how the client wanted to use the space and identified elements of the original fit-out that were not needed, such as a second bedroom and bathroom, allowing a more relaxed, flexible live/work environment tailored specifically to his requirements.

London Warehouse Loft by Form Design Architecture
Photograph by Mike Neale

Having previously lived in New York, he was keen for the apartment to feel more like a warehouse loft reflecting the industrial character and scale of the space, which the previous 2 fit-outs had lost beneath raised floors, lowered ceilings and partition walls.

London Warehouse Loft by Form Design Architecture

Storage, bathroom and utility functions are contained within a sharply-detailed block which appears to be ‘parked’ in the corner of the now fully revealed 17m x 6m Loft. A similarly detailed linear counter block, supplemented by the adjacent fridge/freezer and ‘coffee larder’ concealed in the end of the main block, provides the cooking area.

London Warehouse Loft by Form Design Architecture
Photograph is by Mike Neale

Our client says that he sometimes wakes up in the morning and still cannot quite believe that he is living in his ideal apartment. On Open House weekend, having initially intended to go out for the day, he delighted so much in the reactions of visitors upon entering that he found himself enthusiastically explaining the apartment’s features.

London Warehouse Loft by Form Design Architecture
Photograph is by Mike Neale

With the exception of the unfinished Pitch Pine plank floor (not actually original, having been salvaged from a Welsh Chapel, but the type of flooring that the warehouse would originally have had), all surfaces and fittings including exposed brickwork are finished in white; the crisp machine-made quality of the HiMacs solid acrylic finished kitchen and service blocks setting them apart from the more hand-made and time-weathered surface textures of the original Industrial building.

Floor plan before renovation of London Warehouse Loft by Form Design Architecture
Floor plan before renovation - click for larger image

Surface finishes within the service block are all in dark grey, accenting the idea of a fruit or jewel-case-like object with a smooth exterior skin contrasting with a darker, more sensual core. Removal of previous sub-divisions allows shafts of sunlight from the newly-exposed windows in the South and West walls to animate the space to supplement the softer light from the almost fully glazed North wall which faces the courtyard of the building.

Floor plan after restoration of London Warehouse Loft by Form Design Architecture
Floor plan after restoration - click for larger image

At one end of the open Loft, a concealed sliding wall allows the sleeping area to be fully enclosed if required. At the other, a full width desk and shelf, also finished in white HiMacs, provide a work area for the photographer owner. The problem of trailing cables is removed by a continuous cable tray along the back of the desk, covered by lift up flaps.

3D floor plan of London Warehouse Loft by Form Design Architecture
3D floor plan - click for larger image

Programmable latest-technology low energy LED lighting from Zumtobel and AlphaLED, controlled by a Lutron system, allows different settings for a range of activities (work / gym / cleaning / watching TV) at the touch of a button.

Project Team: Malcolm Crayton (director, FORM design architecture), Mike Neale (project architect, FORM design architecture)

  • lior

    Simply perfect. It is lovely combination of simple materials and fittings.

  • A

    Very, very nice. Where’s the extract fan hidden?

    • Fed Fef

      Uff, this was open during open house London, missed it!

  • Concerned Citizen

    Not much difference between the before and after. Just lost a wall and a couple of rooms.

    • shimoasza

      Simplicity is complex, much harder to achieve.

  • Concerned Citizen

    How is that relevant to my post? It’s easy to take away.

    • eric perlberg

      That “only” a few walls were removed says nothing of the new structures built (e.g. new kitchen block, desk, shelves, cupboards, closets, utility room, etc), changes to volume and space, changes to elements such as window sills, blinds, shutters, changes to surface materials, changes to how lighting is done, changes to heating elements, etc.

      You seem to have a very superficial understanding of architecture.

  • Arch

    Where will the guest go to the toilet? Through the bedroom? While your woman is sleeping naked? This is just a theory. In praxis it’s a prison cell.

    • F. Zentgraf

      Quite an advantage being able to read floor plans.

  • Phil

    Clearly there are two toilets; one accessible by guests through the living space.

  • damla

    Why is your woman sleeping naked while there are guests in the house? I think that is the question you should address. :)

  • Concerned Citizen

    That’s not relevant to the topic. You seem to have no understanding of context.