When the lengthy renovation of this 25-foot-wide brownstone was complete, and the contractors had pulled up stakes and gone away, the homeowners “had a big, beautiful empty house and no sofa to sit on,” said Allison Tick of Allison Tick Interiors.
The designer of residential and retail spaces lives in Carroll Gardens but her projects over the past decade have been mostly in Manhattan. “They needed help with paint colors, lighting, furniture, rugs, pillows, mirrors, everything,” she added.
What her clients did have in abundance was handcrafted wood furniture made by the late Harvey Sargisson of Groton, Mass., who taught woodworking for 30 years at the Groton School. He was the grandfather of one of the homeowners, Page Sargisson, a jewelry designer who learned her trade partly in her grandfather’s studio, where he schooled her in carving, sanding and joinery.
The heirloom furniture was “a driving element of the design,” Tick said. “Here’s a young family with old pieces that have emotional significance, but were maybe not really their style. The aesthetic story became, how do we freshen it up?”
Tick did it by introducing color in the form of statement wallpapers and bright textiles from around the globe, and making sure the new furnishings and lighting they purchased were “very much on the modern side.”
The project was a collaboration, Tick said, with her two artistic, color-loving clients (he is a sculptor and ceramicist), who live with their two sons on four floors of the five-story building and rent out the garden level.
The doorway opposite the pier mirror leads to the kitchen.
“Anyone who comes into the house immediately sees the kitchen, so we said, ‘Let’s not have it feel so kitchen-y,'” Tick said.
Instead of upper cabinets, she used open shelves on either side of the brick chimney breast; there’s closed storage on the opposite side of the room.
The dining room, with a chandelier from West Elm and Chippendale-style chairs made by Harvey Sargisson, is in the middle of the parlor floor.
Tick had new chair seats made out of vividly colored nylon webbing.
Painting the formerly dark ceiling several different shades and finishes of white emphasized its coffers and brightened the living room at the rear of the parlor floor
All the occasional tables in the room were made by the homeowner’s grandfather.
The white rug is a vintage kilim from Double Knot in Tribeca.
A cushion and throw pillows of colorful ikat and batik fabrics upholster a seat in the bay window at the far end of the parlor floor.
A second floor room used as a den/library has a comfy sofa from Mitchell Gold and deep red cork wallcovering with a gold shimmer, found at B&J Fabrics.
The two big armchairs belonged to the homeowners. Tick upholstered them in fabric from Peter Dunham Textiles.
A showstopping wallpaper from Galbraithe & Paul is all the decoration the master bedroom needs.
A small guest room with wallpaper from Quadrille and a window shade in the same pattern has two twin beds made by the homeowner’s grandfather.
A utility sink and a wood cabinet found in a vintage shop became part of a bathroom on the fourth floor. The shower curtain is from West Elm.
Luxe but simple materials in the master bath include a freestanding tub with a marble slab behind.
[Photos by Deborah Jaffe]
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