Elbow Grease And Imagination: Reclaiming A Space

by Kristen Lubbe SOURCE Apartment Therapy
Photo Credit: Kristen Lubbe

Doub transformed her once run-of-the-mill garage in the Fishtown neighborhood of Philadelphia into a free-spirited space that screams fun, resourcefulness and a serious sense of style.

Name: Doub Hanshaw and John David Mahaffey

Location: Fishtown — Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Size: 4,500 square feet — 1 bedroom
Years lived in: 2 — own

The unassuming exterior and the raw interiror is what attracted her to the space and she was able to see a diamond in the rough. The use of poured concrete in the kitchen and bathroom stay true to the raw space while the girly touches of lace and small sitting rooms make the space feel warm and cozy as if it were always meant to be that way.

Her day job as Creative Director at Free People certainly lends itself to how her home has been transformed. The open air feel of the newly installed garage door and the lack of walls makes the space breathtakingly beautiful and inspiring.

Our Style: American industrial with natural elements

Inspiration: The German Bauhaus movement, Gaudi and Frank Lloyd Wright.

Favorite Element: I like that it is unexpected. It is unassuming from the outside because it is a garage.

Biggest Challenge: Maintaining the space and appreciating the space instead of filling the space.

What Friends Say: At first from the outside they are confused — but often amazed when they walk through the door.

Biggest Embarrassment: We used an American flag for a bathroom door until quite recently. That was difficult.

Proudest DIY: I’m proud that a converted it from a greasy working garage to an industrial loft space. It is an ongoing DIY project.

Biggest Indulgence: Opening the roof to make a back courtyard. Pouring the new cement floor with radiant heating.

Best Advice: There are many spaces that can be made into a dwelling. Form follows function.

Other Inspiration: City Planter on 4th in Northern Liberties.