Caryn's Enchanting Fairytale Loft in Atlanta

Caryn's Enchanting Fairytale Loft in Atlanta

Lindsey Roberts
Sep 3, 2009

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Name: Caryn Grossman
Location: Poncey-Highland neighborhood of Atlanta, Georgia
Size: 2,300 square feet
Years lived in: 4

Caryn is back to share more photos of her romantic loft, as requested by you! Her fabulously over-the-top space is in a loft of an old telephone factory warehouse, built in 1936 and listed on the National Historic Register.

An interior designer by trade, Caryn uses her personal space as a place to experiment and work out new ideas. "I rely on visual composition in all of my designs, often as the most important factor," she says. "For example, planning in a space what the eye will see, then what will be seen next, and then next, creating a story as you move through. I guess my place is a constant experiment, a place where my mind, and my hands, just wander free &mdash and I love it that way."

The space serves as a home and design studio and has also been used as a film set, photography studio and art gallery. Caryn lives downstairs, while her photographer friend uses the upstairs for a studio.

We love the total anti-minimalist feel to her space — it inspires us to rethink decorative clutter! How wonderful is it that a space can have so many different styles of items and artwork, from Anichini linens to graffiti, and yet it all blends together in a flurry of romanticized wonder.

Caryn is about to open her own store in Atlanta, called Objet, fashioned after an old Paris apartment filled with fabulous things. She can be reached at

Apartment Therapy Survey:

My/Our style: Urban opulence

Inspiration: Paris apartments

Favorite Element: The huge industrial surround, with high ceilings, old mushroom columns and concrete floors

Biggest Challenge: With 28-foot ceilings and no walls, the volume can be overwhelming. The pieces had to scale accordingly.

What Friends Say: It's over the top.

Biggest Embarrassment: It's often a mess. And it's over the top.

Proudest DIY: The collection of seemingly disparate objects, ranging from mid-century modern to 18th-century antiques that make the space a home. Somehow it all works.

Biggest Indulgence: The six-foot Venini chandelier that hangs in my bedroom.

Best advice: Experiment! There are no rules!

Dream source: Love Train Antiques, an importer of French and Belgian antiques and salvage. Also, Frock of Ages and Stefan's, Inc. &mdash both vintage clothing stores.

Resources of Note (furnishings, hardware, appliances & materials):

Paint & Colors: I used a milk-based paint in Duchess Blue. It doesn't look old, or new &mdash just perfect. There are also two walls sprayed with graffiti. The one in the entry is my favorite.

Furniture: A mix of sample sale pieces, antiques from France and Belgium, some Kartell, mid-century modern, and a healthy dose of salvage. Most of the pieces came from Love Train Antiques, some from Space in Atlanta.

Accessories: Mostly salvage finds, such as old marquee letters, boxes, crates, vintage clothing and jewelry. Nothing really has a "home." If it's pretty, it's out, and that applies to shoes, clothes, jewelry, hats, etc. My favorite sources for household accessories are Love Train Antiques, plus two vintage clothing stores: Stefan's and Frock of Ages.

Lighting: I have an amazing Venini chandelier in my bedroom &mdash the ultimate indulgence! In the living room, there's a Flos Cicatrices de Luxe, designed by Philippe Starck, and a huge heart, called, "Wish," by a lighting sculptor, Christopher Moulder, here in town.

Flooring: The floors are original concrete floors, mostly in original condition, pocked and blackened over time.

Rugs and Carpets: The rugs are by Nani Marquina, a Spanish designer who does wonderful, whimsical work.

Window Treatments: For the windows, as a contrast to the old factory windows and concrete floors, I had custom made 18-foot long silk taffeta curtains from Silk Trading Company. They're amazing &mdash there are two blanket layers within, and extra yardage to pool on the floor in total luxury.

Bed: The bed linens are a mix of Anichini, whose colors are magnificent, and an assortment of pillows from everywhere you can think of.

Artwork: Most of the artwork is by friends. I often use the space as an art gallery, so I've been tremendously luck with what's been left behind! The piece in the bedroom photo is a huge passion flower, created by Michael Chad Barrett. The entry features two graffiti artists, picked up in Atlanta's Krog Street Tunnel. Other pieces throughout the house are from artists Helen Durant, Tracey Lane and Alex Leopold.

Thanks, Caryn!

(Images: Submitted by Caryn Grossman)

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