One of my favorite clients has moved again, to a modest apartment in Queens, NY. A sweet 1 bedroom apartment (with a killer view) that was very, eh how do I say this... vacant. And in need of some color, energy and life >that's me<... Moving from the suburbs to the city to begin again, I naturally wanted him to have a cozy place to live, a place (when all the world travel ceases) he can feel proud to come home to, have a nice buffer zone back to reality, where he could acclimate in his own clean air. *Plants are good for that, you know. So I delivered an eclectic mix of modern/rustic, desert/forest, primitive/industrial influence to the high-rise apartment. And to put it simply, I'll call the style Southwest Mod.
He had a list of needs but otherwise left the artistic direction up to me. His only requests (there were 3) were 1.) to find a solution for the unsightly radiators/air conditioners under the windows(as seen in before pics above...) 2. to incorporate my one-of-a-kind pillows from Ainthatastitch into the decor... and 3.) to create a unique display of his Emmy Awards in the living room. I was quite honored that he enlisted his trust in me for this project and equally relieved that he didn't want all 12 statues on display (for many reasons) "just two or three will do," he assured me. I like 3, I told him. 3 is a great number in design.
Design Dilemma #1
How to hide the eyesore of radiators and air conditioners peeking out of the picture perfect window walls in the living room and bedroom. Sounded easy enough but we had a modest budget and he had only signed a year lease, I figured. Think simple, functional, and economical. Since he needed an office space, we (MedianMan) built a wall-to-wall desk under the window with storage shelves on each end. In order to hide the radiator we needed a breathable material to act as a stationary shield that would let the heat in, and make the ac accessible when needed. We brainstormed and brain-stretched until we found a pair of natural bamboo window blinds that would make the perfect screens, keeping with the rustic theme. A sliding door was created from these framed bamboo blinds, and placed on a track under the desk. BAM! And just like that, a solution was born. Next.
How to create a display for these perfectly shiny and coveted Emmy Awards... it made me nervous. To think of a million ways only to eliminate them one by one for reasons I could only describe as neurotic and costly and inappropriate for a rental property. Thankfully this process brought me back to the basics. Thinking about nature, I wanted to bring wood logs into the design somehow, and what better way than to display the Emmys upon a staggered group of them. So that is what I did.
Dilemma#3 wasn't really a dilemma, I just like listing things in 3's (more on my neurosis later). Making handmade pillows was the easy part, but where and how was another story. I played with the idea of floor pillows and decided his small dog could potentially destroy them. I couldn't bare the visual and moved on. I put them every where else though. Simple. Moderno. Rustico. The rest was the result of an organic collaboration of masculine and feminine energy creating one cool space.
Lamps were purchased at a thrift shop and spray-painted a high gloss cobalt blue to compliment the lime green accents. Walls are Benjamin Moore Stonington Gray (HC-170)
This playful kitchen has a lime green accent wall to brighten up the space and I hand-painted the back splash with a Marrakesh trellis lattice stencil. The shower curtains are this pattern too, I can't get enough of it.
(click on the photo for a closer look)
In the bedroom, a driftwood sunburst mirror hangs above a sandstone leather tufted bed, with bleached-wooden night tables and his very own plaid handmade pillow by ainthatastitch.
MediumMan created a beautiful custom console table out of 2x4s and painted it a high gloss white for a modern look. This coupled with the storage baskets hidden beneath it takes the focus off of unsightly amenities.
Here's a recap...
... I would love to hear your thoughts, so drop a line in the comments below- let's chat!