Loft beds – Maximizing Space Since Their Clever Inception

Loft beds are similar to bunk beds in structure except for the missing bottom bunk. They are very appreciated features in micro homes as well as in guest houses. A loft bed allows the maximization of usable space by freeing up floorspace and offering a sleeping area with all the necessary elements.

Bohemian Loft Bed Style

There are numerous types of loft beds. Adult loft beds are one category. In turn, they can be sub categorized in a variety of different design options. A loft sleeping area can serve as a charming feature in the case of a home with a high ceiling. This way it won’t feel like a dark and tiny attic space but rather as an airy and charming bedroom.{found on sfgirlbybay}

Comfortable loft room
Paris small loft design

A different type of setting where a loft bed would be a perfect design choice is a room that’s narrow. In such a case, placing the bed on the floor would occupy pretty much the whole room. However, if the bed is raised on a platform, let’s say above the entryway as shown on Frenchyfancy, you can use the floor space for something else. There’s enough room left for a small sofa and a desk.

Porter cottage exterior side
Porter cottage bedroom

The Porter cottage located 20 miles off the coast of Maine is the perfect retreat for its owners: a writer and his daughter. Here they can come to relax, find inspiration and enjoy the natural surroundings. The cottage is small but this doesn’t mean it’s any less inviting and comfortable. A full loft bed separates the sleeping area from the kitchen and lounge space, putting them on separate levels.

residential urban wooden box harpoon house
Residential urban wooden box harpoon house bedroom

There is no rule that tells us exactly at what height a loft bed should be placed or how it should be designed like. In some cases it becomes a separate level in a home with a high ceiling. In other cases, the platform on which the bed stands can be placed at a lower level and the space underneath it can be used for storage. A good example to illustrate this type of design is this wooden box home in Portland.

Swedish style loft bed
Nordic living room with a loft bed

Living in a loft can be a challenge, especially when you have very little floor space to work with. The living room, the kitchen, the dining room and the bedroom become one and the same and separating these functions is not easy. A loft bed can solve part of the problem, placing the sleeping area on a different level.

Eli Meir Kaplan for Dwell Jay Austin in his home at Boneyard Studios in Washington, DC on Tuesday, August 6, 2013.

There’s not a lot of space to work with in this tiny mobile house. It’s basically a Matchbox from by JHP Architecture / Urban Design. Yet, when you look at this interior design, you come to realize that it doesn’t really feel that tiny. A lofted bed with a skylight offers a cozy sleeping area while the rest of the space accommodates a small kitchen and storage.

Brooklyn small loft apartment

The 12 ft high ceiling of this Brooklyn home definitely makes it feel larger and gives it an airy feel overall. But simply having a high ceiling without making the most of it is not enough. There are many ways in which to take advantage of such a feature. One option is to raise the bed on a platform. This allows the space underneath to be used for storage. {found on apartmenttherapy}

Advantage of a small helsinki loft
Advantage of a small helsinki loft - walk in closet
Advantage of a small helsinki loft - bed
Advantage of a small helsinki loft - living
Advantage of a small helsinki loft - kitchen

A home doesn’t need to be tiny in order to include a loft bed. There are many ways to take advantage of its presence without necessarily being restricted by the lack of floor space. Imagine being able to add a walk-in closet to your home without having to give up any existing function. That would definitely be a design to take into consideration for your next renovation.

Michael Pozner Small Manthattan Loft
Michael Pozner Small Manthattan Loft Living
Michael Pozner Small Manthattan Loft Stairs
Michael Pozner Small Manthattan Loft - Bed

When he decided to work from home, Michael Pozner didn’t really believe that his 500 sq ft apartment in Greenwich Village would be too small for that. However, at a closer inspection, it became apparent that the interior design wasn’t really organized. A renovation started and part of the project focused on building a wooden box-like structure with built-in stairs and enough room for a mattress on top. The new Pozner Residence became a whole new space.

Historic Barn from Architect Heidi Richardson
Barn Interior Historic Barn from Architect Heidi Richardson
Architect Heidi Richardson Loft Bed

A former horse stable in Marin County, California, has been used as a garage and guesthouse for some time until a water pipe burst and ruined everything. Architect Heidi Richardson was then asked to repair the barn and to give it a new life. Reclaimed wood from the original structure now gives the facade lots of character. The interior was organized into several box-like structures, one of which is a loft bed accessible via a ladder.

Mobil woody trailer
Inside mobile house in wheels - loft bed
Mobile house on wheels bed

This is Woody the Trailer, a self designed house on wheels created by its owners, Brian and Joni Buzarde. The young couple clad the 236 square foot trailer in cedar wood and turned it into a cozy home which they can take with them in their travels. They installed sliding glass doors that make the interior feel spacious, a loft bed with a skylight and a functional kitchen. Distinct areas were created for different functions and this results in an organized and cozy space overall.

Loft Apartment The Sibarist

The Sibarist and Woody Metal worked together to design this loft apartment in Madrid. The goal was to make it look bohemian, inviting and spacious. They called it Mad Loft and envisioned it as a temporary shelter for travelers passing through the city. Murals created exclusively for this project cover the living room walls and the bedroom loft is infused with bright colors and ethnic-inspired prints and textiles. A glass balustrade allows the bedroom to stay connected to the social area and the loft staircase links the two levels.

Vincent Kartheiser Hanging Bed

Hollywood houses are usually big and impressive. But that’s not always the case, as Vincent Kartheiser beautifully demonstrates. His Hollywood home covers 580 sq ft of space and offers its owner everything he needs. The most interesting feature is the bed which stays suspended from the ceiling when not needed. It can be brought down at night with very little effort. The headboard can be folded down and used as a desk. This ingenious combination between a loft bed and a desk is quite intriguing. Called the Cabin Loft, this was a project by Funn Roberts.

Architects Silvia Ullmayer and Allan Sylvester loft bed

Making a home feel larger than it actually is may seem like a nearly impossible task but that’s not the case if you know what strategies to use. Take this London flat for example. It measures 576 square feet but appears to be larger thanks to its layout and chromatic palette. This was a project by architects Silvia Ullmayer and Allan Sylvester who decided to build a sleeping loft accessed via a staircase with built-in storage inside it.


The Puzzle Loft is a small apartment located in New York and designed by Kyu Sung Woo Architects. The reduced dimensions of the space inspired the architects to design it on two levels. The kitchen, dining, living area and bathroom share the same floor plan and the sleeping area was raised off the floor on a platform supported by a storage closet at one end. The owner wanted to be able to stand in the sleeping area and, in order to achieve that, the team had to design it with a lower corridor on top of the closet.

Vertical three stor brik loft

Although very compact, the Brick House designed by Christi Azevedo in San Francisco is not nearly as cramped and tiny as one might think. That’s mostly because it was organized on three levels. The architect spent a year and a half designing and fabricating everything you see here. The only existing things were the original brick walls. The roof of the structure was raised 5 feet and a kitchen, a bathroom and a sleeping loft were added. They can accessed via a metal staircase which continues into a walkway.

Renovation of an apartment in Barcelona by Carles-Enrich Loft
Renovation of an apartment in Barcelona by Carles-Enrich

Before it became an apartment, this space in Barcelona used to be a laundry place. It was transformed by architect Carles Enrich who organized the original three-level structure into a single-storey space. The south-west portion of the plot was excavated to make room for a study and nursery and above this area a loft bedroom was created, supported by solid black beams. A set of suspended stairs offer access to this level directly under the exposed brick ceiling.

35 square meter apartment loft bed

Loft beds are common in most tiny homes like this 35 square meter apartment. By raising the sleeping area off the floor on a platform, the area underneath it can be used for something else. For example, it can become a bathroom. This combination of functions frees up enough room in the apartment for all the other spaces to become larger and more comfortable.

Ceiling loft bed
space under the loft bed into a work area

Another strategy is to turn the space under the loft bed into a work area or to squeeze a small kitchen in it. When you have an apartment of only 20 square meters, such as this one, every centimeter matters. Usually the design strategy in cases like this one is to create multifunctional zones and to use modular furniture which allows you to reconfigure the space as needed.

Create a loft space in your small apartment

When the ceiling is not high enough to allow you to create a loft space, the design strategy changes. However, this doesn’t mean you can’t take advantage of the ideas presented so far. By simply raising the bed off the floor by half a meter or so you can add useful storage underneath it.

Attic apartment loft bed

Attic apartments make things a bit more difficult. The angled roof doesn’t really offer the possibility to fit a loft bedroom anywhere near them. However, this doesn’t completely eliminate the possibility of a loft bed. You’d just have to place it closer to the center of the room where the ceiling is at its highest. A good spot can be above a door.

Apartment loft bed design
Narrow large apartment with gallery wall

Of course, an apartment or house doesn’t necessarily have to be tiny in order to include a loft bed. It can simply a matter of style or personal preference. And who could say no to a walk-in closet for which there wasn’t enough room at first or to a separate work space under the bed?

Zoku hotel in Amsterdam Room

The Zoku hotel in Amsterdam proposes a very interesting idea. It’s comprised of loft spaces which are meant to accommodate traveling professionals who wish to use the space for work, relaxation and even for entertaining clients. The space is flexible and covers all the bases. The sleeping area is raised on a platform and hidden behind a wood slat wall. The staircase which connects it to the rest of the room can slide inside the platform, offering more space when needed.

Minimlist studio loft

The minimalist design approach used for this studio apartment reveals an open lofted bed sitting on a platform considerably larger than the bed itself. The entire studio is white with the exception of the space under the sleeping zone. This strong contrast is both pleasant and striking.

Loft apartment in St. Petersburg

As part of the transformation of a 1912 building, this apartment in St. Petersburg features a mixture of classical and modern elements. Intricate molding gives it a distinctively vintage feel. The new floor plan, however, reveals a modern space with a lofted bed and extra storage under it. The rest of the floor plan is open, bright and airy, taking advantage of the building’s original charm.

Cozy Nordic Apartment Design

It only measures 29 square meters but this cozy apartment in Gothenburg, Sweden seems larger than that. The apartment has an open floor plan. A lofted bed sits on a platform and underneath it a desk offers a cozy work area. Huge windows make the most of the views and the natural light.

Small Student loft apartment

Student apartments are generally very small and sacrifice comfort in favor of functionality. But it doesn’t have to be like that if you know how to organize the floor plan. To make room for a small kitchen, extra storage or a work desk, a lofted bed can become a defining feature. An inspiring example in this sense is the apartment designed by LYCS Architecture in Hong Kong, a high-density area where even tiny homes are difficult to rent.