Brian's Nest in the Clouds

Brian's Nest in the Clouds

Jill Slater
Jun 16, 2010

Name: Brian
Location: Financial District — NYC
Size: 800 square feet studio alcove rental
Years lived in: 4 months

Brian and his boyfriend had the rare experience of moving to the Financial District for more light. In fact, the neighborhood move helped them to rediscover their old furniture.

Living on the 27th floor of a former massive and modern office building affords jaw dropping views and closer access to the sun! All the furniture looks different in this apartment than it did in their larger, but darker, Chelsea loft space.

Moving into a smaller space meant that Brian had to do a lot of condensing. This gave pieces more utility and multiple purpose. For example, the flat screen TV sits on top of the credenza which is used to shield the heating unit along the window. The ledge that runs the perimeter of the apartment, below the window serves as a desk extender in the bedroom, a side table for meals at the dining table, and display shelf elsewhere around the apartment.

Brian has experience working for an interior design firm, so it wasn't much of a stretch for him to whip his new space into shape in less than a few months. Moving forward, he might add or swap out a couple of accessories, but according to Brian, it's pretty much finished. Thanks to the apartment's breathtaking backdrop and the changing seasons, however, Brian's home will never be static.

Apartment Therapy Survey

Style: Unpretentious, Fun, and Contemporary.

Inspiration: Color, Light, New York, and Music.

Favorite Element: My favorite element is the windowsill that wraps around two sides of the apartment. It's like a built in bookshelf/display area/seat/table/drink stand/desk all in one.

Biggest Challenge: The move from a large loft space to a one-bedroom apartment. My biggest challenge was creating a layout that accommodated everything we needed the space to do. I did numerous layouts in CAD before we moved in to work out what pieces would need to have duel functions. In the bedroom the desk also acts as a nightstand. The dining table is also my worktable. The Womb Chair ottoman acts as an extra seat if we have people over.

What Friends Say: We only moved in a few months ago but a lot of our friends say if feels like we've lived here for a while. It feels complete. And "nice view".

Biggest Embarrassment: Our overly sensitive smoke alarm! Whenever I attempt to cook the alarm goes off. It's nice to know if works but it gets to be a bit much.

Proudest DIY: I upholstered the back of the bookshelf in our bedroom, made a campaign-style inspired headboard and crafted a printer cover; all out of the same canvas tarp from Home Depot. It's cheap and effective.

Biggest Indulgence: The bed. Its pretty basic but we used to sleep on a futon so it's a step up.

Best Advice: Don't take your space to seriously, it should be fun. Don't get stuck in one style, mix it up.

Dream Source: The prop archives at Paramount studios in LA. We went on a tour (Thanks Andrea) in February. They have some amazing things that would be great to accessorize a space with.


    • Living Room:
    Sofa from DWR, Womb Chair by Eero Saarinen from Knoll, Red reading lamp next to Womb Chair from Ikea, Red Eames Molded Plywood Chair from DWR, Standing lamp from Jonathan Adler, TV console from Las Venus, Dinning table from Craigslist, Dining chairs by Arne Jacobsen for Fritz Hansen from DWR, Pendant light from CB2, Mirrored Globes on table by Brian Gennett (Me).

    • Kitchen:
    Round plate/plant stand from Moma, Squid wisk from Pylones.

    • Bedroom:
    Bookshelves, Desk and chairs from Ikea, Tripod Lamp (Weegee Table Lamp) from Design Public, Reading lamps by Lite Source Inc. purchased from Myxlplyx.

    • Bathroom:
    Toilet Tray from Container Store.

For details on the kitchen, check out Brian Decorates on the

Images: Jill Slater

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