If you had to rate cities by their cool factor, Austin, Texas, would be high up on the list. This cultural hot spot is frequented by travelers wanting to soak up its eclectic live music scene, world-class restaurants, and engaging festivals like SXSW. So it's little wonder that their interior design would mimic the city's hip flavor. Just take this contemporary industrial loft in downtown Austin for example. With its lofty ceilings, wall-length windows, and concrete floors, this edgy space literally oozes cool vibes.
This "sexy, sophisticated aesthetic" is exactly what Allison Crawford of Allison Crawford Design wanted to create when she approached the 2,422-square-foot project for her tech entrepreneur client in his mid-30s.
"I wanted the space to be overtly masculine and dramatic. It's a high-rise in downtown Austin, so I also wanted to play with the tensions between contemporary minimalism and the music-inspired chillness of the city. I kept the color palette really simple and let the details of the architecture shine."
Ahead, Crawford shares her style notes for each room so you can create one of your own, or dream about it.
When you have such a large open-plan area, there needs to be a central room or theme that ties them all together. In this case, it's the living room. "We wanted to keep it muted with cool tones and a soft textured sectional against the hard concrete of the building," Crawford tells me. "We also wanted to highlight some of the classic pieces that the owner had in his collection." Inevitably, the piano and vintage Eames rocker became the focal points of the room. "We accessorized with the Yamaha speakers and matte black to give the room an '80s synth-pop vibe that brings out the underlying party potential of the space."
The midcentury modern–inspired dining room is the airiest part of the home: "It floats between the kitchen and living room," the designer tells me. The bright white–and–warm wood dining set were strategically chosen by Crawford to draw together the two spaces. "The open concept of the space really allows for movement, so we wanted to keep that momentum up so that all three spaces feel connected," she says.
Zooming in on the living room, it's easy to see why it's the anchor of the open-plan design. With a comfortable sofa covered in pillows and throws in tonal gray hues, a layered coffee table on a textured area rug, all backed by an abstract painting, this is where comfort lives (while also being a visual feast for the eyes).
The loft is brimming with art, from sculptural details to original paintings or photographs. We love the high-end mix here of the West Elm lava-rock object and the abstract painting.
Is there anything cooler than a piano in the corner? When you live in such a musical city, it only makes sense that instruments would double as décor.
This kitchen was made for entertaining. The barstools line the marble island with a clear view of the custom warm wooden cabinetry. "All of the lines are clean and angular, picking up on the masculinity of the home, while the accessories draw out the warmth in the wood," explains Crawford.
We couldn't leave you without a close-up of the custom kitchen. With so much concrete, this retro-style wooden cabinetry really warms it up. "The gold light fixtures and the creamy vintage rug give the space an inviting feel—classic and striking, but not too pretentious to gather with friends and crack open a beer," adds Crawford.
Every corner is considered in this loft. This side table–slash–bar cart is perfectly positioned behind the kitchen with views of the city next door.
For the bedroom, Crawford wanting to combine the classics from varying genres; a midcentury Barcelona daybed, crisp white bedding, coastal-inspired black-and-white photography, and perfectly worn-in leather. "Hints of orange on the nightstands contrast with the cool tones and add a contemporary touch," she says.
"This bathroom is a bachelor’s sanctuary," Crawford says, and we have to agree, thanks to its clean black tiles and black marble. "It's a masculine spa at home, with space to unwind from a long day at work or after hitting the gym hard," she says. "The cool gray Turkish towels and bright greenery add dimension and make the space feel like a high-rise retreat."