Our Nifty San Francisco Mission Loft

We’ve always wanted to try a loft place. Michelle found this ground-floor, New York loft-style building — with a killer garden space — in the Mission district. It is a converted photography studio with lots of natural light and high, bright ceilings! But because it is scheduled to be torn down next year, Michelle got an amazing deal on the rent, giving us a low-cost way to explore this part of San Francisco and decide if the area is worth the nose-bleed pricing šŸ˜‰

Update: the city has ruled that this pre-Earthquake building is historic! Turns out it was a gymnasium for an acrobat group, which partially burned down in the Great Fire, then the remaining part became a German community center. So our landlord has to keep the building intact, but he can add a second floor.

Michelle’s keystone requirements were: an easier, rail-based commute to her land conservation gig in Palo Alto; more accessible closet space; and the biggest one, a chance to do something new. She obsessed over the planning like me over a GDC talk šŸ˜‰ Our policy is whoever has the hot hand in design, and/or is doing the heavy lifting, gets to drive, so the inside work is all hers. I got to obsess over maximizing the usability of a SF-sized garden which was in sad, sad shape. My requirements were simpler: I wanted to check out the livability of the area and have bicycle-commute distances to new jobs and rail centers.

The kitchen view, which added a
The kitchen view, which added a “mass color” requirement to the garden, as cooking time is art time:-)
Art from Korea, China and Japan form the entry wall into the loft.
Art from Korea, China and Japan form the entry wall into the loft.
I used a lot of California natives for the bee and butterfly habitat.
I used a lot of California natives for the bee and butterfly habitat.
Michelle is currently focused on horror writing, as one might guess from her art collection!
Michelle is currently focused on horror writing, as one might guess from her art collection!
My science fiction art wall.
My science fiction art wall.
I used masses of color for a good view from the kitchen, and a tiny splash of annuals to fill in time gaps in the native blooming cycles.
I used masses of color for a good view from the kitchen, and a tiny splash of annuals to fill in time gaps in the native blooming cycles.
My hybrid electric bicycle and my favorite workstation in Golden Gate Park!
My hybrid electric bicycle makes my favorite workstation in Golden Gate Park only fifteen minutes away!
My two dozen crates of books did not fit; these were the keepers! The African diaspora art forms the backdrop.
Out of my 30 crates of books, these are the ones I decided to keep for further enjoyment and study. The African diaspora art forms the backdrop.
California poppies make a great, drought tolerant base and change color as the season progresses!
California poppies make a great, drought tolerant base and change color as the season progresses!

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