The “If Wes Anderson Became Set Decorator for Downton Abbey” Loft
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Name: Brett Leigh
Location: Providence, Rhode Island
Size: 800 square feet
Years lived in: Rented 6 months
I drove up to an old factory in an industrial part of town, just outside of Providence, Rhode Island. This is the kind of building that’s been re-purposed and converted into loft-style apartments, so I figured I could expect some creativity. But there was nothing that could have prepared me for the magic that is Brett Leigh’s home.
Brett’s attention to detail and cinematic flair are all over the apartment. As someone who travels a lot for his career as an actor (Gone Girl, The Social Network), having a quiet and inspirational home to come back to after a long trip is just what Brett needs. “My home in Providence makes for a great relaxing space. Although I do love a good city, I am more of a rustic guy. Looking out at a tree situation is superb and leaving my space without traffic is even better. Breezing into major cities is the perfect situation for me,” he says.
In only six months of renting, he has transformed the open, empty space into a well-curated collection of antiques, heirlooms and super functional additions. He handled all of the interior design himself and also hung numerous plants and a dramatic red chandelier high on the ceiling.
And speaking of things hanging off the ceiling…did you see his lofted bed space?! Wanting to separate the bed from the rest of the apartment, the obvious (and only) spot to put it was above the bathroom. He was able to design and construct a bed that hangs high above the rest of the apartment. Accessible only by a handmade ladder, it’s like sleeping in a tree house. Brett’s playfulness and quick wit was especially obvious when he was telling me about his apartment search: “When I was originally looking for a loft space, I wanted a space big enough for a trampoline. The ceilings are high enough but the space isn’t!”
I guess the hanging bed will have to do for now.
Apartment Therapy Survey:
My Style: If Wes Anderson became set decorator for Downton Abbey.
Favorite Element: The Gallery Wall.
Biggest Challenge: Creating a bedroom in an open-loft-style space.
What Friends Say: They want to sleep in the hanging bed.
Biggest Embarrassment: Sunday nights when the woman upstairs watches “Game of Thrones.”
Proudest DIY: Hanging bed.
Biggest Indulgence: The huge couch [fits eight people comfortably]
Best Advice: Throw things away. Nothing is worse than cluttered space. Get rid of things you don’t use. Kitchen counter space should be empty and reserved for cooking and creating. Create an environment where people are active instead of passive. Also, don’t be afraid of grabbing something on the side of the road, bleach it, use it and love it.
Dream Sources: When I was originally looking for loft space I wanted a space big enough for a trampoline. I’ve always wanted a trampoline in my living space. The ceilings are high enough but the space isn’t.
Most of my furniture are heirloom pieces, however I have added accents below. Home Depot is my number one go-to for all plants. I find they sell the highest quality and usually are in a healthy condition when bought. IKEA is the number one place for accents like picture frames, small kitchen items, and all those little things needed but not seen.
PAINT & COLORS
I don’t paint. I would destroy things. I get paint EVERYWHERE. My painting abilities are less than par.
Chest — Antique from a vintage store
All Picture Frames — Ikea
Dining Table — Heirloom
Dining Vintage Chairs — Random pickups and vintage stores
Locker — Friend’s basement
I didn’t buy anything for the kitchen. As-is was fine with me. I don’t like clutter. Clean and empty counter spaces are the way to go.
Bed made from 1/2 inch PVC piping — Home Depot
Memory Mattress foam — Walmart
Shelving — Home Depot
Shower Curtain — Ikea
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