Our former University-provided apartment had very tall, dramatic cathedral ceilings: 20 feet at least. It was, however, a one-bedroom apartment, so there was little storage space, and not much room if someone came to visit for a few days. So, we got the bright idea to build a second floor – a loft in the apartment. The floor space would be increased by at least one third, and the loft added sleeping space for three more beds – a double and a twin. That effectively took care of guest space. AND, it added lots more room for storing things, a new book case built into the studs that support the upper floor, and more space for shelving in general, plus two extra closets for clothing that is not being used (summer or winter things, depending on the season). We built it to support itself and did not sink a single nail into the existing apartment walls, which should please the University, who are our landlords.
The cats really liked it, but we will have to figure out a way for people to sleep up there without being covered up in sleeping kitties, too. The cats like sleeping next to a warm person, which is nice for a nap, but not so nice for all night. You need to turn over at least once or twice per night, and that is hard when you are surrounded by sleeping kitty people. Besides, not everyone likes sharing sleeping space with a cat (or a dog, for that matter!). My husband thinks he has got that figured out – we will try out the various solutions until we find one that works.
We also hung red drapes over the opening, to give the upstairs a sense of privacy, which looked good because the color scheme of the downstairs was also red. And I finally was able to hang a piece of fabric I painted for a wall hanging – it is a fifteen-foot tree with various fall-colored foliage, and we could reach the ceiling to hang it. I was so proud! Of course *I* think the banner looks good, I painted it! I have another one planned for the upper wall space in the kitchen – a mermaid, but don’t tell anybody yet….
The upstairs also had a space that I could use for sewing. I like to sew various garments and other things (repair, too), so there was a dedicated space for that activity upstairs. The floors were covered with nice, thick rag rug carpets, so it was comfortable underfoot. We found a chandelier, with red accents, and it nicely set off the space and looked really pretty up from the downstairs. We were very pleased with the addition!
And we had this lovely new loft up for approximately four months before we decidedto move to the neighboring town. It took 1/10th the amount of time to take the loft down as it did to build it. Oh, well. We’ll use the lumber to build a sleeping loft in the NEW apartment, too!