Name: Jenny & Clove
Location: Astor Place, NY
Size: 442sq ft open studio (NYC loft meets LA Modern meets Zen temple)
What inspired you?
We were inspired to bring a California feel to our lives in New York. We missed the "indoor/outdoor lifestyle," so when we saw the wall of casement windows leading out to the garden we flipped. Despite this vision, the apartment was a complete wreck & had no appliances. To open up the space, we demolished the galley kitchen walls.
...Because we live & work in our space, each piece of furniture & each closet serves a unique function. One walk-in closet is devoted to my artwork alone and I run a business, Video Studio 55, out of the space. I host clients in our living room & our dining table doubles as a worktable for meetings.
Look for creative ways to express your own style in what otherwise might be a traditional practice or ordinary object. I knew when I designed our kitchen that we wanted to knock out the walls requiring us to reframe the kitchen space. Rather than doing a traditional steel header covered in dry wall & plaster, I chose a material that would enhance the room with a Zen temple flair.
Using timbers rescued from old New York buildings seemed fitting & became a focal point for the entire apartment, adding a sense of history & beauty only found in aged materials. We also re-purposed our old kitchen fixture into a skylight by pushing the light source up into the ceiling & laying glass across the old opening.
The previous owner chain-smoked for 45 years & had 12 cats! We had to invent a floor stain to cover the cat pee damage (Minwax Ebony & Jacobean, 50/50 mix, applied thickly & left on for 2 days) & it took 12 coats of primer (Gripper is best) to keep the peach nicotine at bay. Once we restored its shell, we discovered a warm, beautiful home for two working artists & two sleeping dogs.