In cities where housing space is at a premium, the conversion of industrial spaces into homes is a growing trend. For this apartment in Kiev, Ukraine-based designer Konstantin Kildinov, chose to embrace rather than play down the industrial background of the space, leaving the concrete exposed on the rough walls and polished floors, but softening its austerity by combining it with wooden panelling, exposed brick, coated steel and large framed windows. The cool gray of the concrete is perfectly offset by contrasting splashes of vibrant colour in the furnishings, and bookcases feature prominently throughout the house, lining many of the interior walls.
Treated as an architectural element, a staircase with grated treads and corresponding catwalks above, dominates the high-ceilinged living area, competing only with the faux-fireplace housing a built-in bookshelf in the chimneybreast.
The furniture is simple and stylish: the modular sofa and ottoman are from the Peanut B series by Mauro Lipparini allowing for flexibility not only in dimensions and layout, but thanks to their removable liners, even in colour.
Just off the living room, an alcove hides a small office space, only hinted at by a peek of the geometric chair by Konstantin Grcic for Magis which, with its concrete base and structural seat, looks like it could almost have been made with this particular apartment in mind. A set of glass doors separates the living room from the home gym, with a uniform colour scheme of gray and black with intense splashes of yellow, and consistency in materials providing for visual continuity.
The minimal design of the concrete kitchen from Leicht is also in line with the industrial loft aesthetic of the rest of the apartment; decoration comes only from functional elements and the materials themselves, like the built-in concrete and light, natural-finish wooden cabinets which integrate shelves and plenty of storage space, eliminating the need for upper wall cabinet units, thus giving the kitchen a weightless, airy feel. This is further enhanced by the use of corrugated glass instead of a wall, silhouetting the staircase behind it and allowing natural light through, while a large rectangular lamp provides both illumination and visual interest.
Corrugated glass also features in the skylight in the bedroom on the upper level, diffusing sunlight into the room. A large bookcase takes up most of one wall, and multipurpose Hive tables and ottomans from B&B add pops of colour as well as functional utility. An unfinished wooden door leads to the en-suite bathroom, which would be almost austere in its geometric volumes, were it not for the combination of the black-painted exposed brick and unexpected pendant lights whose warm glow is reflected in the high mirrors.
Just beyond the bedroom an internal balcony hedged by red chain-link fencing looks over a vertical garden. Yellow and blue plush loungers complete the primary color scheme, while the sculptural Wireflow lamp by Arik Levy for Vibia seems to flow down from the exposed cables on the ceiling.
The uniformity of materials, textures and colour used throughout the apartment harmonise the space, striking the perfect balance between rough and soft, and highlighting its industrial roots while sacrificing none of the comfort of a modern home.