Two Friends’ Minimal Brooklyn ‘Bachelor Pad’ Lights Up Neon At Night

published Nov 30, 2021

Two Friends’ Minimal Brooklyn ‘Bachelor Pad’ Lights Up Neon At Night

published Nov 30, 2021
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Name: Darragh Dandurand and Emmett Ceglia
Location: Ocean Hill, Brooklyn, NYC
Type of Home: Two-Bedroom Apartment
Size: 1,000 square feet
Years lived in: 3 years, renting

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Deep in the heart of Brooklyn there are four turret-shaped apartment buildings one after the other and I used to live on the second floor of one of them. For three years, my dear former roommate, Emmett Ceglia, and I came to and from the converted railroad abode and lived by two mottos (which we respectively had both scrawled on the walls and had hanging up at the very end of the hall): “Don’t repress, express!” and “Earn the Party.”

We had not originally planned to live in the seemingly unknown neighborhood of Ocean Hill, but we made a home together filled with his drum gear and my photographer equipment. Over time, we each added personal touches and special flavors, like painting the bar in the kitchen and his door fully matte black, while I laced neon lighting throughout the apartment. You could probably describe our style as “bachelor pad-chic.”

Due to the pandemic, I moved out, but Emmett still holds true to the original space we created together (he’s still on the lease). I’m proud of what we designed and more so, the memories we made in our little two-bedroom, New York nook.

Apartment Therapy Survey:

My Style: Darragh Dandurand – Black and white minimalism with a few decorative pieces and pops of color thanks to plants and neon studio lights I switch on as soon as the sun “turns off.”

Emmett Ceglia – Minimalist/hardcore/nomad-core

Inspiration: DD – Focus; not having many visual distractions… other than artwork, of course… I love the simplicity of black and white, which is consistent with Emmett’s appreciation of minimalism. The home’s only exception to this is our nook/library that is covered in band posters and cool graphics we’ve picked up from around the world on our respective travels.

EC – Conceptually: Focus/retreat/clarity | Physically: Recording studio/photo studio/temple/home chef

Favorite Element: DD – The amount of sunlight we get, our backyard, and the beautiful turret-shaped front room.

EC – The dishwasher. Period.

Biggest Challenge: DD – Keeping the space versatile and flexible, while also creating a sense of cozy consistency.

EC – Large curved wall in the living room creates challenging furnishing choices.

Biggest Embarrassment: DD – Having almost no furniture for 90 percent of the time we’ve lived here. 

EC – Not enough places to sit/entertain.

Proudest DIY: DD – Painting most everything I own black or white with few exceptions. I paint most of my furniture, plant pots, and decoration black or white to keep the space linear and clean.

EC – Placing hooks all over the kitchen to hang pots, pans, cutting boards, etc.

Biggest Indulgence: DD – Office space. I’ve had a great desk setup with lots of room the whole time I’ve lived here, including space to turn my home into a photo studio.

Best Advice: DD – 1. Sunlight is more important than you realize it is. 2. If you’re a renter, try to build a real relationship with your landlord — it will help in the long run. 3. Plants change everything for the better.

EC – 1. If you haven’t worn it in a year, why do you have it? 2. Keep only what is most precious to you. 3. A “junk drawer” is blasphemy. 4. Your bed is the most important investment you can make in your home.



  • Black Metal Shoe Rack — Aldi’s
  • White wire mesh rack — Street Score
  • Black Drawers — Facebook Marketplace
  • White Ottoman — Gift from Friends
  • White Lack TV Stand — IKEA


  • POÄNG Chair in Black — IKEA 
  • Black X Pillow, I embroidered the X’s on — IKEA
  • Patterned Black and White Pillow — IKEA
  • Hightop Dining Room Table with Matching Chairs — Facebook Marketplace
  • White Chair — Facebook Marketplace


  • Low White Coffee Table — Gift from Friends
  • Mirror — Facebook Marketplace


  • Wooden Bench — Facebook Marketplace
  • Black Lack Coffee Table — IKEA
  • An abundance of posters, works of art, and memories collected from our respective journeys; remind us of all that we’ve done, seen, represent, etc.; helpful reflection in our house where we are often motivated to continue ever forward, ever upward
  • A highly diverse, small but mighty library spanning our personal and professional tastes and interests


  • Furniture from all different brands, many of which I don’t remember!
  • Drawers from IKEA
  • The mobile has film frames from my father’s favorite film, “Forbidden Planet.” My dear friend, Jarett, bought them for me. 

Thanks Darragh and Emmett!

This submission’s responses and photos were edited for length/size and clarity.