A while back, my friend Stewart from high school started posting pictures of her Greenwich Village apartment makeover on Facebook (you have to admit that for all the junk that comes through your Facebook feed there are some gems). It didn’t take long before I was asking if I could feature it here, and now that she’s finished it, I’m so excited to share it with you! I’m sure you will be just as smitten as I am with how chic and sophisticated it is while also featuring so many eclectic and sentimental elements. That’s no easy feat to pull off, but I think she’s done it quite masterfully.
Like most New York City apartments, this apartment isn’t sprawling, but by keeping the colors light on both the walls and the furniture throughout the main living space, it feels quite spacious. It also helps that there are clearly defined spaces for both the living room and dining room even though they technically share the same room. I think my favorite piece in the living room is the painting over the couch which was done by her late step-grandfather, Constantino Palmieri, although I do love the asparagus lamp (which she’s thinking of painting gold) that belonged to her grandmother as well. And the vintage coffee table, which she picked up at flea market, offers a little bit of softness to all the hard edges in the room.
Down at the other end of the space, in the dining room, a Danish mid-century credenza that she found on eBay holds treasured family photos. Above it hangs a painting that Stewart’s mother brought her from a street artist in Paris.
While Stewart’s husband wasn’t exactly seeing her version when she decided to paint stripes through the foyer and hallway, they now agree that they came out fabulous. (You know how we love striped walls around here!) In this little niche in the hallway, she tucked a sleek and chic lacquer desk with a Kartell chair. The mirror, a find from an antique store in Vermont, helps brighten up the space by reflecting the light that pours through the windows at the opposite end of the room. But the piece de resistance in this space is the Richard E. Aaron print of Andy Warhol and Mick Jagger hanging out. If you were to ask me one thing that describes Stewart, it would be that she is a huge music buff and this print seems so quintessential Stewart to me! She took her time finding the perfect way to frame this print and ended up creating a custom look by combining two frames (never settle for less than exactly what you want!).
This space is where the foyer and living room meet, and it’s worth taking note of the amazing curved wall in the background that greets guests as they walk in the door. I also love the mini bar that is the perfect use of the short wall between the kitchen and living room. The deer skull she found on eBay was another element that her husband questioned before seeing it up, but what can we say, it works! And yes, the gold bamboo and glass side table is simply fabulous too.
New York City kitchens tend to be anything but spacious, however, even though this galley style is rather typical in size and layout, we like it’s modernity. Also, I’m totally digging the arched back-splash cutout where the paper towel holder is. It’s such a simple design element, but it just allows that much more brightness into the space, makes it more functional, and adds a softness to this area of the apartment.
Many people may look for wow factors in a bathroom, but I think one of the most important things you can do in a bathroom renovation is use restraint. The last thing you want is for someone to walk into your bathroom and be able to pinpoint what era it was when you redid it. Plus, when you’ve got one bathroom that isn’t McMansion sized, it’s best to keep it simple, light, and bright like she did here.
And now for the master bedroom! I don’t just love it because the walls don my favorite color, navy blue. Actually, I can’t really think of anything I don’t like about this room (or let’s be honest, the entire apartment), but let’s just call out some of the things that I love.
Opposite the bed is a vintage bureau that belonged to her husband’s mother with another painting by her late step-grandfather. I love how the colors of the painting look against the navy blue. And the collection of vintage Louis Vuitton suitcases and trunks (more of which you’ll see below) are also from her husband’s side of the family and are monogrammed with his step-grandmother’s initials.
And of course, we can’t overlook the bed which features a custom headboard by Megan Young Designs in Holly Hunt fabric and custom bedding through Schweitzer Linen. And you just can’t beat the amount of light that pours into this room. It’s virtually unheard of to have a bedroom in New York City with four windows in it!
Across the hall, the second bedroom belongs to Stewart’s daughter Alice. And of course Alice’s wonderland contains an adorable mushroom stool. I’m also partial to the vintage Lilly Pulitzer patchwork baby blanket that a friend of Stewart’s mother made for her when she was a child. And the Absinthe print hanging over the bookcase, next to Paddington, is a piece that Stewart picked up in Amsterdam while backpacking through Europe after college.
And lastly, the shelves in Alice’s room complete her wonderland with bunnies and an Alice doll. But they also feature many sweet objects such as the white baby booties that belonged to Stewart, the tortoise shell comb that belonged to her husband, and the needlepoint pillow that was made by a family friend and that features both of their initials and was used during their wedding by the ring bearer.
While this apartment is clearly gorgeous, my favorite thing about it is how they incorporated so many meaningful items into their decor. The best spaces are those that include a mix of things that are old and new, found and searched out. If you are true to yourself and buy or collect things that have meaning to you over time, you will end up with a space that you love. Oh, and I’m totally going to start searching for things on eBay!
Unfortunately, Stewart and her family are actually leaving this fabulous pad (you can check out the sales listing here) because their brood is expanding with another little one on the way, but the good news is that she’ll be taking all of these amazing pieces with her, and I’m certain that her next home will be just as fabulous because of that.
Thanks so much for sharing your home with us Stewart and family!
Stewart Israni and Town Real Estate