A Former Yacht Chef's Nostalgic Brooklyn Apartment

A Former Yacht Chef's Nostalgic Brooklyn Apartment

Melanie Rieders
Sep 27, 2017

Name: Tracy Young
Location: Bushwick — Brooklyn, New York
Size: 1,500 square feet
Years lived in: 2 years, renting

Pennsylvania native Tracy Young remembers helping her parents garden, ferment, and cook from a young age. Her Brooklyn apartment is an eclectic nod to her idyllic childhood, but also to the decade she spent as a chef cooking aboard yachts that sailed the Mediterranean, South Pacific, and Caribbean. Today, she co-owns the restaurant Kings Co Imperial in Williamsburg. As a trained and experienced chef, she helped develop the menu at the restaurant, but now lets her partner run the kitchen as she works the floor and takes care of the gorgeous garden out back. (Tracy is also a master gardener who's even raised Italian honey bees!) All of these personal and career inspirations prompt her to fill her apartment with things that have a story, like family heirlooms, vintage cookware, and beautifully-designed furniture.

Mid-century furniture with natural materials, floral-printed upholstery, and bright natural light characterize Tracy's space. With classical music playing on an old record player, Tracy tells Apartment Therapy that her home feels like a calm oasis from the often-chaotic world of restaurants in New York City. It's always been important to Tracy that her home provides her with a calm sanctuary where she can unwind after a long day's work — and if it looks beautiful at the same time, even better.

Apartment Therapy Survey:

My Style: Karen Blixen collides with Bernice "Ray" Eames

Inspiration: Every place I've ever been.

Favorite Element: The ceramic garden elephant.

Biggest Challenge: The New York-style railroad apartment with no outdoor space.

What Friends Say: For better or worse, "It's like a museum."

Biggest Embarrassment: The ragtag clowder of rescued street cats alighting nightly on my fire escape waiting for dinner (but don't tell them, they've been through enough).

Biggest Indulgence: Set of eight original Hans Wegner CH 30 chairs & AT-312 table.

Best Advice: Collect from the heart and pull a few muscles lugging something home that's too big and too heavy from some faraway place.

Dream Sources: De Vera, the Monday flea market in Nice, France, and Rago Arts Auction House


Rug — Antique Beni Ourain
Sofa — Tobia Scarpa 1960's Knoll Bastiano
Sofa fabric — Reupholstered in "Holland & Sherry" highland wool by Molly Andrews Burke at Chairloom (like everything else in my apartment!)
Taxidermy blue marlin — Caught by mom in 1967 at Cape May, New Jersey
Pair of beech Sigurd Resell Falcon Chairs — Norway w/ original white leather
Floridian ceramic garden elephant — Grandma's (my sister has the other)
Sheep skins — From my pal's Lucia & Tom's farm at Clifton Sheep Station in New Zealand
Svenskt Tenn "Grona Faglar" plastic tray — By Josef Frank
Teak ice bucket w/ orange lining — By Jens Quistgaard for Dansk
Walnut drink cart — Belonged to paternal grandma
Ottoman — Covered w/ 100 year old Anatolian (Sarkislan) wool Turkish kilim
Ornate gold gilded mirror — A wedding present to my parents

Antique cherry wood beekeeper's desk — From my parents
1775 Pennsylvania and 1920's Pennsylvania map — Belonged to grandfather
Set of JF Herring fox hunt prints — Belonged to grandfather
Antique Pennsylvania long rifle — From family collection
Sapien "floating" bookshelf — Design Within Reach
Wool photon rug — Design Within Reach
Vintage metal jeweler's lamps — Street finds
Chaise lounge — Covered w/ Katie Ridder linen "Beetlecat" print by Molly at Chairloom
Straw basket and hats — From the Seychelles Islands
Millefiori glass paperweights — Belonged to maternal grandma
Mid-century metal and glass side table — Eileen Gray E1027

Pair of oil paintings — By friend and Vermont artist David Thurston
Oil and gold leaf painting — By artist Selina Trieff
Pair of French art deco chairs — Monday flea market in Nice, France
Wooden sweater box — Antique

Cherry wood stool — Belonged to maternal grandma
Mom's reading chair — Recovered in Katie Ridder linen "Peony" fabric by Molly at Chairloom Collection
Chairs with original teal wool fabric — Hans Wegner CH 30
Swag leg dining room table — Nelson
Hand-blown demijohn wine jug — Vintage Italian
Digital abstract on canvas — By artist Claire Ellen Corey
Antique porcelain salmon fish platter — Belonged to maternal grandma
Shell collection — From travels all over the world
Oil painting — By artist David Thurston
White bookshelf on rollers — CB2

Swivel chairs — Reupholstered by Molly at Chairloom
Collection of antique wooden potato mashers — From maternal grandparents Wooden factory shoe cart — From family's Pennsylvania farm
Antique wooden mandolins — Belonged to my dad, used for making sauerkraut
Series of champignon French lithograph prints — From Beaune, France
Copper cookware collection — From family collection

Thanks, Tracy!

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