Boho-dustrial: The New Face Of Industrial Living

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industrial loft bohemian apartment

Tired of stark, minimalist industrial lofts? Check out this new style that adds plenty of color and texture.


If I say “industrial loft”, what comes to mind? Bare cement walls, metal HVAC conduits, large and bare windows? Lots and lots of grey?

If that’s what you imagine, then you’d be right. That’s what a lot of industrial spaces look like. But there is a recent trend in industrial design that’s taking over: adding bohemian and eclectic elements to industrial lofts.

These new boho-dustrial space have plenty of colors, textures and styles you wouldn’t usually associate with industrial living. But they definitely shift industrial living from clinical to comfortable.

What am I talking about? Let’s have a look.

Adding plants

One of the common things among boho-dustrial designs is the addition of plants throughout the space. Organic plants are the opposite of the bare, mechanical brick, cement and metal spaces. And opposites are good, because they create balance and contrast.

Plants add color and lushness to the walls of industrial lofts. Hang them in front of windows, and you get beautiful shades when the sun hits through them. Put a few potted plants and small trees of different sizes in a corner of your loft, and you’ve got a mini-forest to call your own.

Adding textures

The textures of industrial spaces are usually hard, unyielding and clinical. But by adding layers of softness, you can transform it into a haven of comfort… and keep your feet warm in the winter.

Begin with Oriental (add plenty of colors too!) or faux-fur rugs. You can throw several of them around or layer them on top of each other across a room. Since industrial floors tend to be very bare, you can pretty much let your imagination run wild.

industrial loft space living room

You can also add texture with window coverings. Lacy or ornate fabrics add a feminine touch to spaces that are often very masculine.

Adding comfort

Industrial spaces often tend to be a bit stark and stiff. In keeping with the style, there often isn’t much comfortable seating.

But boho-dustrial design uses cushions, couches and armchairs to encourage hanging out in comfort. I particularly like the Moroccan-style cushion seating surrounded with hanging drapes. It provides a nice little cozy space to lie around, read, chat, drink wine. In an industrial space, it becomes a little haven of comfort and relaxation.

In boho-dustrial design, couches are deep and cozy, and often mismatched. There are hammocks hanging from the ceiling and deep velvety day beds.

Adding history

To contrast ultra-modern industrial spaces, try adding some pieces of antique furnishings and your favourite paintings to the walls. Antique candlesticks, chests, wrought iron cages and cupboards would all give style and provide a fascinating visual contrast.

These antique items are full of texture and style and fit well within boho-dustrial design. Since there’s a lot of leeway in the textures, colors and accessories you can add, anything that catches your eye can find its place in your decor.

stylish loft space furnishings living room

Adding books

And, of course, my favorite thing to add to any space: books.

If you can stack them ceiling-high, even better: walls covered in books make any space welcoming and comfortable. Books have emotional meaning, and they add plenty of personality to a cold, impersonal space like an industrial loft. The more books the better!

Combine your book wall with a reading nook (see above) for a nice little boho boost to your space. A few plants to clean up the air can’t hurt either!

Adding personality

If pure industrial design is your style, then the ideas above might not appeal to you. But if you’ve been looking for a way to add warmth, comfort and personality to a stark, industrial space, then the boho-dustrial trend might be something to look into.

The fun thing with boho-dustrial design is that there are no rules. It’s a very eclectic style that allows for a lot of creativity and personalization.

How do you imagine your boho-dustrial space? What kinds of items would you add to make a warehouse or a bunker homey and comfy? Share your ideas with us!

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Anabelle Bernard Fournier

Anabelle is a freelance writer, writing teacher and blogger. She spends a lot of time at home, so she likes to make sure that it's cozy and nice, especially in her reading nook. In her free time, Anabelle knits, walks and learns how to write stories.