Clinton Hill Renovation

When I first met Tamara last year I knew we would hit it off! She was looking for a little help refreshing an apartment that she had been in for about 10 years. We didn’t change the floor plan of the apartment but we did make so pretty big changes.

The biggest change to the space was the new kitchen where we removed a small wall that partitioned off the original footprint of the kitchen. The new layout allowed us to expand the kitchen all the way across the back wall and add more storage. In the kitchen, we kept the cabinets super simple. That worked out particularly well in this space because it’s open to the rest of the living space. For the countertops we choose concrete. I love this material for countertops because it can be tinted to almost any color and has a natural organic quality. There are 2 camps of people where countertops are concerned. Camp one can’t deal with the idea that the surface might change or develop a patina over time & camp two, those that can embrace it. Neither is wrong, but I always try and find out what camp my client is in when making counter tops decisions. Above the island, we hung 2 brass pendants. Above the dining table, we choose a Workstead chandelier, another small business that we both loved.

Tamara was recently in Europe so the pop of blue on the front door was directly inspired by her travels. The walls are not actually white but a very light gray, to separate the entryway from the rest of the space I painted the lower half of the wall a darker gray, the same dark gray that’s on the accent wall in the kitchen.

In the entryway, we reused a hide that Tamara had in her bedroom. I love how the organic shape defines the space without giving it a hard edge. Also, hides are a great choice for entryways because they are hard wearing and look good with a little age on them. To add drama and function to the space we brought in 2 of my favorite pieces the large gold mirror and the leather top bench with cream lacquer legs and brass accents. The mirror opens up the space and reflects the light from the adjacent wall of windows. The bench (topped with a tray) provides a landing pad for keys and bags while and the mirror is also the perfect spot to check yourself on the way out the door. For a layered look, I placed the bench in front of the mirror. Both the mirror and bench are from Anthropology, the small set of side tables are from CB2 and create a perfect perch. We actually used the tables again in the living room. They have a small footprint and great height. They are very useful from a design standpoint. In all my projects I use a mix of commercially available, vintage and to the trade items. In this day and age, you can find great pieces at a variety of price points. The painting on the wall is one that I made for the space, the moon shape is made of silver leaf and as it oxides over time the topography of the image evolves. I have a fine art background so my roots as a painter are never far away.

In the living room we added the amazing Calico wallpaper. For the whole project, we tried to work with smaller local business for the statement pieces.  The other big change we made to the space was installing floor to ceiling drapes. This softens the lines of the open loft space, helps draw your attention the gorgeous high ceilings and give Tamara a way to control the sunlight that streams through her huge windows! We reused the sofa, rug, coffee table and console that Tamara already had. To freshen the look up we added a lot of textured pillows, some new accessories on the coffee table and a pair of velvet chairs, pulling in some of the gray from the other parts of the house. We looked at a lot of chairs for the space a variety of price points but settled on these beautiful West Elm ones. It was not a matter of price, they were just our favorite! On top of the chairs, we used Rebecca Atwood pillows. I love the way the design on the pillows plays with the print of the wallpaper. Between the chairs, we brought in a Dwell side table.  Tamara has great light and a green thumb so we had to add a few plants as well!

In the bedroom, we went pink. It’s one of Tamara’s favorite colors. We started with the paint color; one I custom mixed using a pink that we toned down with the wall color from the rest of the space (RL Bonneted mixed with RL Box Pleat). We wanted a grown up pink with a lot of complexity to it. On the bed we used linens by Cutiver in 2 shades of pink. In this space, we also added floor to ceiling drapes, in pink linen that has a subtle metallic quality.  Although we reused the side tables and canopy bed I positioned them in front of the window for drama and added a pair of black candles stick lamps on either side of the bed. They are tall with a classic shape and help ground our pink color story. On the floor, we use a sisal rug and layered a whimsical rug at the foot of the bed. When you enter the room the first thing you see is a Shagreen dresser. It has a beautiful texture and gray tone that is perfect with the pink walls. Above the dresser, we used The Half Moon Mirror by Ben and Aja Blanc. It’s more of an art piece than a mirror and it’s one of my favorite pieces in the space.

Over all Tamara really loved the Ralph Lauren Home paint colors so we used them throughout the project. We both adore the line because the colors have such subtle and complex formulas that really add depth to walls.

Full paint list:

RL Box Pleat White on the walls

RL Gray Coat (dark gray in entryway & kitchen)

RL Black Dose on all the doors except the front door

RL Bonneted & RL Box Pleat on the bedroom walls


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