‘We travel quite a bit, and it’s very comfortable to come back to our NYC home,’ say the owners of this newbuild three bedroom luxury condo, with its redesigned joyful interior that has resulted in one of the world's best homes.
Designer Susan Petrie of Petrie Interior Designs (opens in new tab) was brought on board to remodel the property. ‘The clients' objectives for the space were to create a chic pied-à-terre and also design a place for the extended family to gather. New York is a place the clients love for its diversity and proximity to family,’ says Susan. ‘They wanted to get rid of the dated wallpaper and built-in cabinetry while working with the existing floor-to-ceiling windows and natural light. The clients have an eye for color and sophisticated textiles, and my job was to create a dwelling that embodied exuberance, style, color and truly reflect their globetrotting lives.’
The spaces were originally built out for a young couple with two small toddlers, so the challenge was transforming it from a baby-proofed space to somewhere to entertain and relax. ‘The previous owners left some items that we had to decide on either keeping or ditching,’ says Susan. ‘If we kept them, I insisted on revamping them, and in the end the clients decided to “go for it” and only keep the dining table, which I felt was a good choice.’
Susan sums up the style of the interior as a global, chic retreat. ‘The design element I truly enjoyed was the introduction of colorful wallpaper. I loved introducing strong pattern plays and the use of bold yet sophisticated fabrics and colors. The clients had a strong attraction to Manuel Canovas fabric and we decided to inject it as accent pieces. With this in mind I was able to weave a design story that reflects the clients' love of global furnishings, eclectic/unique touches and their love of diversity and chic interiors. In their words, “each room makes its own personal statement.”’
‘The previous owner applied dark stained/wood grain wallpaper on the entry wall and front door, which we chose to remove in order to brighten up the space,’ says Susan.
Her hallway ideas revolved around creating an instant global feel that sets the tone for the rest of the interior. ‘The Ramayana Blue toile wallpaper by GP & J Baker evokes travelling to far away destinations, and the vintage Venetian mirror coupled with the Moorish mother-of-pearl inlay table and African Senufo meditation stool set the stage for a dwelling that is filled with curated furnishings with an international flair,’ says Susan. The entry bleeds into the hallway covered in Serena Dugan Studio’s Cassis Grasscloth Wallpaper in Prussian Blue.
‘We decided to not use window treatments in some spaces, such as the living room, to allow the wonderful light flow into the home,’ says Susan. ‘The warm furnishings take on a new “golden hour” meaning as the light switches during the day. And the western views of the historic Gramercy area are beautiful.’
The living space is the main focal point of the apartment and is is one of the clients' favorite rooms due to its intentional eclecticism. 'It was about creating an inviting space that had warmth, comfort and strategic pops of color,’ says Susan. ‘The need to customize was important as I wanted to make the space feel unique.’ Among Susan's living room ideas was taking the color palette from an image of Moroccan spices, including cayenne, saffron, paprika and ginger. ‘The custom tufted sofa from Highland House has a lovely Samuel & Sons treillage embroidered border trim. The custom bergère chairs with a raspberry contrast trim and walnut finish are upholstered in Schuyler Samperton’s Benghal Stripe in berry. I loved adding the scalloped edge ottoman and brass trim (by Oomph) and using Carolina Irving’s Zig Zag fabric in Coral that complements the saturated orange multi-Mahal rug from Eliko.’ The custom sofa pillows are made with Manuel Canovas fabric.
A focal point of the room is the gallery wall. ‘I have been friends and a fan of Mary Maguire’s work from when she started selling her art at Brimfield years ago,’ says Susan. ‘Her use of antique frames and worldly images is so unique and cheerful. I loved creating a gallery wall with some of her select giclee pieces.’
Kitchen ideas included replacing the pendants with smoked glass Noreen pendant lights and Henson counter stools, both from Arteriors, to bring a more rustic yet refined look to the kitchen.
Making the most of the natural light was one of Susan's key dining room ideas. As well as the avoidance of window treatments, Susan specifically chose an Arteriors recycled green glass and gold leaf chandelier to cast additional light when needed and also reflect the natural light that comes in from the west and south. An authentic hand woven/embroidered Otomi table runner (sourced during a trip to Mexico) adds a pop of color and elevated vibrancy.
Susan also utilised the table and benches left behind by the previous owner and updated them by creating custom cushions using a Kravet hexagon fabric.
Susan's home office ideas included introducing a statement wallpaper. ‘I always like using wallpaper from my friend Serena Dugan and when I had the opportunity to use her Bahia grass cloth in Onyx/Natural I knew this would be the perfect space. Inspired by the Brazilian relaxed beaches, the texture/pattern makes one feel transported to an exotic location, yet the wonderful city views by the vintage woven rattan desk bring you back to reality. I love that contrast.’
The rust and teal sivas rug from Eliko grounds the space nicely.
The primary bedroom is a favorite space of the clients. ‘The goal was to make the room feel as though you are surrounded by a sea of coziness and taste,’ says Susan. ‘The custom upholstered bed from Oomph had the exact shape that I was looking for that fits within the global theme. The Peter Fasano Trotwood Dusk Fabric from John Roselli & Associates offered a touch of femininity without being over the top. The Matouk zig zag sea applique sheets provide sheer luxury and work nicely with the upholstery, as does the custom bolster using Lisa Fine textiles Mughal Floral Monsoon fabric. The custom window treatment in Jane Churchill’s Silva in Blue from Cowtan and Tout offers the perfect sound barrier and light protection from the city streets. And the Madeline slipper chair, upholstered in Brunschwig & Fils Les Touches, provides a place to put one’s bag or a spot to sip tea and read; something the clients do quite a bit.’
Since those staying in the guest bedroom range in age from toddler to adult, Susan was keen to incorporate bedroom ideas that created a space with wide ranging appeal. ‘This was such a fun space to work on. I wanted to make sure the room appealed to all guests and was comfortable yet had an air of cheerful luxury. The Schumacher Thistle Stripe wallpaper was one both the client and I were immediately drawn to, and the custom bed in the orchid chinoiserie fabric seemed like the perfect complement to the walls.’
Vintage Moroccan green hand painted side tables from Chairish are a fun find that gel nicely with the overall palette and room’s vibe.
Interior design/ Petrie Interior Designs (opens in new tab)
Photographs/ Jacob Snavely
Interiors have always been Vivienne's passion – from bold and bright to Scandi white. After studying at Leeds University, she worked at the Financial Times, before moving to Radio Times. She did an interior design course and then worked for Homes & Gardens, Country Living and House Beautiful. Vivienne’s always enjoyed reader homes and loves to spot a house she knows is perfect for a magazine (she has even knocked on the doors of houses with curb appeal!), so she became a houses editor, commissioning reader homes, writing features and styling and art directing photo shoots. She worked on Country Homes & Interiors for 15 years, before returning to Homes & Gardens as houses editor four years ago.
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