At Home: Couple apply DIY approach to Dogpatch loft 

Do-it-yourself devotees Courtney King and Roy Crisman do a lot with a little in their Dogpatch loft.

The couple’s approximately 800-square-foot live/work space functions as a home brewery, workshop, library, art studio, office for King’s organizing business and much more.

“We set up our space to support the things we like to do,” King, who founded Full Circle Organizing (, says. That means camping storage under the stairs, brewing gear above the kitchen cabinets, and a green metal drill press as one of the centerpieces of the loft. The couple use the machine, which was discarded by a neighbor, frequently — and so do their friends.

The home isn’t only a functional space: Crisman and King pack in the guests for parties, clothing swaps and movie nights, where a pull-down projection screen is used instead of a television.

Because furniture and beanbag seating can be pushed to the edges of the lower level, the space doesn’t feel cluttered or crowded, even when it’s full of people.

One thing that the couple couldn’t find space for upon move-in was all their books. So characteristically, they took matters into their own hands and built themselves a wooden loft against the south side of the wall.

The loft was built in three sections over about six months, King said. They tapped into the exterior wall for one side and attached the structure to studs, then added a ladder. Voila: room for books, more cushy seats, and even a container garden.

And when it was done?

“We load tested it at a party,” King says. The structure held 12 people.

Now the library is also an “escape hatch,” a safe, comfortable spot to curl up with a book, enjoy the sun, or get creative.
Crisman’s art is everywhere: on the walls, on a clothesline below a row of mannequin heads with hats and wigs. But it’s not so much about the display, King says: “The reason we have these things up is because we made them.”

Found art adds to the look: a golden-hued icon the couple calls “Our Lady of the Dumpster” and a striking screen print of a woman’s face contrast with Crisman’s abstract work. But because they were rescued, recreated and reclaimed, they all have their space in the organic, evolving character of the home.



Favorite colors to decorate with: Green, orange, blond wood, earth tones
Favorite piece: Green drill press, found and repaired
Favorite store: Japanese discount store Daiso, Rainbow Grocery’s kitchen section
Design philosophy: Function first

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Staff Report

Staff Report

A daily newspaper covering San Francisco, San Mateo County and serving Alameda, Marin and Santa Clara counties.
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