Category: Room Makeover

Introducing: The Lorimer Project

For the past few months, I have been working on the Lorimer Project, a two-bedroom apartment in Williamsburg. My client has a bright, bohemian style and a creative spirit, and I wanted to design a space that reflected her personality.

My client had just moved in when we started working together, and the apartment itself was a blank slate. The main room is an open-plan kitchen, living, and dining area. The layout is irregular; it is a long, narrow space with lots of nooks and crannies, windows, and duct work.

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This photo shows the view from the apartment’s front door. To the left (not pictured) is a small foyer with doorways to the bedroom and bathroom. The kitchen is to the right, and it opens up to the main living area. At the far end of the main room, there is a door to the second bedroom, which my client plans to use as an art room.

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The kitchen has dark wood cabinets and stone countertops. There are reclaimed wood shelves for additional storage. Two bare bulb pendant lights hang over the counter.

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Here is a closer view of the right side of the room. There are two windows on this side, one large and one small.

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There is an alcove on the left side of the room with another large window.

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This 3D model gives an overview of the main room. As you can see, the floor plan is highly irregular. We had to be very thoughtful about the size and layout of the furniture we chose for this room. 

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The bedroom was also a relatively blank slate. My client had a queen storage bed, which she wanted to keep. She also purchased the sculpted geo console from West Elm. The room gets excellent natural light from the window, but there are no built-in lighting fixtures. 

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Lastly, the second bedroom will function as my client’s art room. Aside from this mid-century-inspired desk and small storage cart, the room was empty. The sliding glass doors open to a small terrace off the back of the apartment. 

So there you have a complete introduction to the Lorimer Project. In the next installment, I will show you our plan to transform this empty white space into a colorful bohemian home. Stay tuned!

For the past few months, I have been working on the Lorimer Project, a two-bedroom apartment in Williamsburg. My client ...

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A Tranquil Master Bedroom Makeover

I just wrapped up a master bedroom makeover in Marina Del Rey, a beachside neighborhood in Los Angeles. My clients’ original decor was sparse: a matching dark wood bedroom set and a light Ikea Malm dresser. Their windows were dressed with vertical Venetian blinds, which had been installed by the landlord, and translucent black and cream floral curtains.

My clients wanted their new bedroom to be sophisticated and tranquil. They asked for contemporary furnishings, a neutral backdrop, and pops of vivid color. Their existing furniture was functional, but they were missing a few key items: a workspace and a comfortable place to curl up with a book.

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My first recommendation was to buy a new bed. I am not a fan of matching bedroom sets because they lack personality and distinctive flavor. My clients kept gravitating towards inspiration images of upholstered headboards, so I suggested we go in that direction. I hired a local craftsman to make a custom winged headboard with deep, diamond button tufting and silver nailhead trim. We were able to hand pick the upholstery and specify the exact dimensions, and it cost less than half the price of similar beds from retail stores.

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My clients had a beautiful Turkish rug in storage, which I used to anchor the bed. I pulled the palette of putty and cornflower blue directly from the accent colors in the rug. The old room did not have adequate lighting, so I added a contemporary polished nickel chandelier above the bed.

The room has one very large window, which looks directly into a neighboring building. I replaced their original curtain rod with an extra-long brushed nickel double curtain rod hung at the top of the wall. Translucent white sheers allow light to enter the room, but still maintain privacy. Gone are the dated vertical blinds!

The 100-inch window was far too wide for standard drapes. My clients’ originally solved this problem by hanging three panels, one on each side and one in the middle. But this arrangement broke up the window and blocked a lot of sunlight. We could have ordered custom curtains, but they would have eaten up a big part of our budget. So instead I bought four panels of readymade drapes and had the seams sewn together to create two extra-wide panels.

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I had throw pillows custom made by seamstress Suze Hopper. I bought a bold textured blue and white pattern for the front and a soft blue velvet for the back.

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My clients wanted a workspace in the bedroom, but they didn’t want it to scream “desk.” So we opted for a secretary style desk and hutch that would provide a lot of storage and hide electronics from view. This secretary is part of the Ikea Hemnes line, but we wanted to personalize it. I painted the body in Benjamin Moore’s Glacial Till and replaced the black knobs with polished nickel hardware.

An antique bergère chair provides a cozy place to lounge and read. I found this chair at Magnolia and Willow in Long Beach for an incredible $140! The upholstery was in perfect condition. A West Elm standing lamp, which I found on craigslist for $65, will allow my clients to use the chair after the sun goes down.

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On the other side of the room, the Ikea Malm dresser was also transformed. I painted the dresser the same Glacial Till color, and I added 3/4″ panel molding and brushed nickel pulls on the drawer fronts. I will post a step-by-step tutorial on this dresser makeover soon. A large landscape mirror reflects the window’s light, helping to brighten the entire space.

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I just wrapped up a master bedroom makeover in Marina Del Rey, a beachside neighborhood in Los Angeles. My clients' orig...

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