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When designer Danielle Fennoy of Revamp Interior Design first visited new clients at the home they were leaving in Westchester County, she thought surely she’d be able to identify some furnishings that could be re-purposed in their new digs. But that was before she saw the apartment, on the 37th floor of a new Financial District tower.
“Their Westchester home was in the countryside. When I got into the new space, I said ‘Wait!’ Nothing fit. We had amazing water views that had to be respected,” said Fennoy, a Stuy Heights resident with an office in Midtown. “My vision for the space changed dramatically, and we needed a clean slate.”
Her clients, empty nesters who were downsizing, gave her few directives. They wanted “a happy welcoming space,” and the female half of the couple loved orange but was opposed to blue. That was a challenge for Fennoy. “With water all around you, blue is your neutral base,” she said. (She eventually worked in a bit of teal.)
Curved walls are a distinctive feature of the newly constructed hi-rise. “It influenced a lot of design decisions,” Fennoy said. “You really don’t have a choice. Rectilinear furniture would be difficult.”
Instead, she chose curvaceous designs, like a Vladimir Kagan sofa, to anchor the living room. Such pieces “create unique environments and make awkward corners not so awkward,” the designer said.
The placement of the furnishings was also tricky. Floating furniture away from the walls was a large part of Fennoy’s approach. An area she and her clients took to calling “the helm,” at one end of the living area where there is an arcing section of the window wall, has a pair of swivel chairs that serve as a multi-purpose place to roost. “You can be part of the dining room conversation, or turn and be part of the living room conversation,” she said. “Or you can just look out the windows and marvel at the Statue of Liberty and the boats going by.”
The emphasis on orange (a favorite color of both Fennoy’s and her clients) is established in the entry foyer, as is a ‘wave’ motif on a CNC-carved oak millwork console by Upbeat Custom Designs. Fennoy spec’d similar millwork throughout the apartment, the idea being to “mimic undulations of the waves and reinforce the sinuous curves” of the building.
The den is straight ahead as you enter, the main living space to the right. The right-angled carpet “kind of indicates ‘Go that way,'” Fennoy said.
Many of the pieces in the apartment were designed by Revamp and custom fabricated, including the ombré striped rug and bench seat. The mirror came from ABC Home.
The serpentine sofa, a 1950s Vladimir Kagan design now available through Holly Hunt, is a striking centerpiece in the living room, along with two orange Aston lounge chairs by Minotto and a custom rug that pulls together all the apartment’s bright hues.
Fennoy had contractors cut a hole in the master bedroom wall, just behind the new CNC-carved media center/bookshelf, in order to recess the new millwork and gain more space for a TV.
A gel fireplace and colorful custom rug from Rug Art add warmth in different ways.
The dining room buffet, another CNC-carved custom piece, has a red resin countertop. The oval table, made of zinc encased in resin, is from Brooklyn-based Wüd. The yellow dining chairs were sourced from Artistic Frame.
The walnut cabinets to the left are part of the developer’s kitchen, which was left as-is.
Swivel chairs from Bensen in “the helm” were covered in a lively patterned fabric that pulls together the room’s color palette.
Orange chairs and silver side tables in the den were two pieces Fennoy was able to salvage from her clients’ previous residence. Custom shelving supported by metal braces wraps around an existing column.
The tapestry above the sleeper sofa is a piece the homeowners brought back from a trip to the Galapagos. The coffee table from Oggetti was a way of “bringing in some wood to tone down all the water,” the designer said. The Eero Saarinen chair from Knoll provides another hit of blue.
The master bedroom’s ombré wallpaper from Calico, along with the bedcover and custom rug from Melanie B, reflect each evening’s sunset view.
Another Kagan piece, the Erica chaise, sits in the window.
The Insider is Brownstoner’s weekly in-depth look at a notable interior design/renovation project, by design journalist Cara Greenberg. Find it here every Thursday morning.
[Photos by Will Ellis]
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