The loft: it’s the incredibly chic architectural element you’ve always wanted. In pictures of lofted spaces, you see how a perfectly executed design scheme can make this type of addition both beautiful and functional. 

The only problem is, you’re not quite sure how to make your own loft into a functional yet eye-catching design feature in your home. Fortunately, there are so many ways to use a lofted space, no matter how big or small. Here are some of the most creative ways others have outfitted theirs — ideas you can take into your own home:

Rather than stick a treadmill into the back corner of your living room or in the unused corner of your bedroom, why not dedicate an entire room in your home to sweating it out? A loft gives you just the right amount of space for all you’ll need to build a home gym. You might invest in a few pieces of equipment, or use the floor space to perform the moves shown on your favorite workout DVD.

The idea of a bonus space that’s lifted high above the rest of your home imparts your loft with a sense of fun right off the bat. You can take advantage of that funky, entertaining vibe by turning your loft into a game room. You’ll want one gaming centerpiece, like a pool table or foosball table, to tie the space together. Then, add comfy chairs, a fridge for cold drinks and overhead lighting to make it a bonafide billiards room.

In a similar vein, you can transform your loft into the entertainment area of your home, but with a twist. On one wall, hang a screen onto which you’ll project your favorite movies or sporting events. In front, a line of recliners or one big, comfy sofa will provide seating for everyone you love. Decorate the walls with movie posters or sports paraphernalia and voila: you’ve got a home theater that’s the perfect place to spend your Friday nights.

Of course, you can make your home’s lofted space a bit more professional and turn it into a home office. Just be sure you have all the elements of a lofted office: first, you’ll need to make sure you have plenty of storage in the furniture you choose, since most lofts don’t have built-in closet or shelving. 

Some of these filing cabinets and drawers might come as part of the desk you choose for your lofted office, too. Finish it off by choosing a comfy office chair, as well as seating for those who might stop by your workspace for a meeting. A desktop lamp, wall art and office supplies will finish the place off and give you a productive place to work from home. 

A smaller loft space might be too small for full pieces of furniture, but too big to leave completely bare. As such, you can use it as the background for your favorite relaxing practice, meditation. 

Meditation imparts a wealth of health benefits with regular practice, and it’s made even more effective when done in a space that makes you feel focused and relaxed. A dedicated corner of your home would be just the ticket, and an unused lofted hallway or bonus room could be the perfect location. Plus, if you fill the space with art, plants and other serene design elements, it’ll look beautiful regardless of whether or not you’re using it to meditate.

The high ceilings in your loft give you all the space you need to build enough shelves to hold your book collection. Not only that, but you can give yourself a cozy recliner or sofa on which you can read the books you pull down. The high-up, private, serene space will be a perfect in-home getaway, an oasis where you can get lost in a book.

When your kids were little, you watched over them while they played to make sure they were safe and happy. Now that they’re a bit older, they play on their own. The only problem is, that without a dedicated space for their favorite toys, they end up all over the house.

Your loft space could just be the answer to your organizational prayers. Turn it into a playroom and a central place for all of the toys, board games, DVDs and other kid items that tend to get lost in the fray. That way, your kids will know exactly where to find their things, and exactly where they belong after play. Plus, keeping all that in the lofted space means their toys are out of sight.

These seven ideas make the most of any loft space, but only if they’re the type of room that’d be useful to you and your family. Think about the activities you love, or think about the type of room you wish your home had built-in; these are the types of ideas that’ll spark the perfect loft use and layout. In the end, it’s up to you to decide how to make the most of your loft and, once you do, you’ll find just how well your loft works for you — both visually and functionally. 

Kacey Bradley is the lifestyle and travel blogger for The Drifter Collective, an eclectic lifestyle blog that expresses various forms of style through the influence of culture and the world around us. Kacey graduated with a degree in Communications while working for a lifestyle magazine. She has been able to fully embrace herself with the knowledge of nature, the power of exploring other locations and cultures, all while portraying her love for the world around her through her visually pleasing, culturally embracing and inspiring posts. Along with writing for her blog, she frequently writes for sites like US Travel News, Thought Catalog, Style Me Pretty, and more!

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