It’s funny to me that “bachelor” style has such a bad rep. I equate it with leather chairs that look like massively overstuffed beasts, giant TVs, a sparsely filled modular bookshelf and not much else . . . maybe an unpacked cardboard box or two. A harsh stereotype, I admit, although in my defense, I have walked in on just this scenario more than once. It’s nice to see a bachelor pad that incorporates a bit of coziness and eclecticism but also utilizes the more sophisticated elements of masculine style, such as salvaged industrial materials and subdued neutral hues. Interior designer Melinda Cabanilla updated this Cambridge, MA, loft to feel warm and textural but also classic and understated. I love the colors she’s chosen, and the lighting fixtures in the bedroom are amazing. And not a pizza box in sight! Okay, now I’m teasing :) Great work, Melinda! — Kate
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Time: 1.5 months
Basic Steps: For this project, I focused on texture, lighting and color, which are three of the many stimuli I used to design from. Below are the steps I used to create this space.
- Paint/Color — Colors that were masculine, industrial and bright enough to create a warm and inviting feeling.
- Furniture — This project became about the custom furniture from recycled pieces and parts (i.e., creating custom pieces from architectural salvage). I used salvage because he wanted an industrial look, but I also wanted to make sure it was done in a way that made it feel warm. I added warmth, color and texture by using tarnished and rusted metals, old ceiling tins and various woods. I have always loved salvage; it’s about creating a new life for old objects.
- Lighting — I wanted to find unique lighting fixtures and design to complement the architectural salvage items we transformed into new pieces. I wanted the space to look industrial, but without the cold feeling usually associated with the industrial look. I went for lighting designers that may not be as well known. . . . It paid off.
- Texture — I created the finishing touches with rugs to add texture; art and accessories to add interest on the walls, floor and on furniture; and lighting to give texture to the feeling of the room.
Salvaging takes time, mileage and man/friend power. It takes time to sort through hundreds of items. As a designer, it’s looking at found items and figuring out how I can recreate it into another furniture piece needed for the project at hand. Treat it as a scavenger hunt because when you find something that is just that perfect, it makes it all worth the time and effort. Hint: Make sure you are nice to your friends because the ones with a truck will come in handy to help you move the found items you purchase.
Internet searches for furniture/lighting/accessories are also time consuming. I am always online looking for the best deal and most unique items for my clients, and most often what you think will take you one hour usually ends up taking three. So be patient. When you finally find the perfect item at a lower price than all the others, you will be handsomely rewarded, sometimes spending half of what you would normally spend on retail sites. — Melinda
“After” photographs by Rachellynn Schoen