A Warm Industrial NYC Loft Mixes Minimalism, Muted Colors, and Marvelous Rugs
Can't-Miss House Tours Straight to Your Inbox
Keep up with our latest house tours each weekday with our House Tour of the Day newsletter
Name: Rana Argenio and husband
Location: TriBeCa — New York, NY
Size: 2,000 square feet
Years lived in: 2 years, renting
Complete with exposed brick walls, distressed hardwood floors, super-high ceilings, and an open floor plan, Rana Argenio’s Tribeca apartment, which the Texas native shares with her husband, is undeniably industrial. “It was extremely important for us that our home felt soft and intimate,” she says. The founder of direct-to-consumer linen brand 10 Grove, Rana knows a thing or two about mixing style and comfort. “My family has been crafting luxury textiles for five generations, and with 10 Grove, I’m taking that first step towards delivering the same quality and bespoke craftsmanship that was historically available only to the design industry,” she admits.
Aside from the welcoming factor, another design aspect that Rana wanted to infuse into her and her husband’s space was a sense of authenticity. Rana says, “We had to have a connection—historical or emotional—to each piece that we introduced into our home.” When selecting furniture and art, Rana tended to gravitate towards more weathered and worn pieces than shiny, new ones. In fact, her design philosophy can be summed up by her favorite Le Corbusier quote, “The home should be the treasure chest of living.” And that’s exactly what her apartment is: an eclectic collection that illustrates where she’s been, how she lives, and where she’s going.
“I wanted our space to feel authentic to us: to our heritage (I’m Persian, he’s English-Italian), to our journey and to our everyday style,” explains Rana. “This meant that many pieces took months, if not years for us to find. Some of the older pieces were collected on trips (our version of a souvenir), while other pieces were created directly with the artisans so they would meet our exact vision and needs.”
Though the apartment is swathed in a muted palette and an unmistakable minimalism, Rana wanted to pay homage to her Persian heritage in some way, so she laid several ornate rugs throughout the space. One such rug, which was handwoven by her great-grandfather’s apprentice, is in her living room and another, a gift from her grandfather to her parents, lies in her bedroom. “My family’s background actually began in crafting handwoven rugs in Iran, where my great-grandfather was known as the ‘father of the vertically integrated textile factory.’”
Of course, she couldn’t honor her background without also paying tribute to her husband’s. “Our space is filled with lots of art, which my husband and his mother have collected over time.” There may be canvases on nearly every wall, but the couple has a favorite art piece: the Pistoletto, which serves the same function as a mirror would during a traditional Persian wedding ceremony. The mirror is meant to reflect the life that the bride and groom will build together, and the Pistoletto is the first thing people see when they walk into the couple’s treasure chest of living.
Apartment Therapy Survey:
My Style: The bones of our space are undeniably industrial—rustic brick walls, distressed wood floors, high ceilings, and open spaces. However, it was extremely important for us that the space feel soft, intimate, and comfortable, where we could spend time with friends and family.
Inspiration: Overall, if I had to summarize what inspires my design aesthetic, it’s pieces that are made by time—muted tones, diverse textures, weathered surfaces, and a mix of antique + modern artworks that share universal qualities.
- Throughout our space, you’ll see several Persian rugs, which are much more ornate than anything else in our apartment. That’s because my family’s background in textiles actually begins in crafting handwoven rugs in Iran, where my great-grandfather was known as the “father of the vertically integrated textile factory.” The antique rug in our living room was designed and woven by one of his apprentices, while the rug in our bedroom was gifted by my grandfather, to my parents, who gifted it to us.
- Our space is also filled with lots of art, which my husband and his mother have collected over time. Some of these pieces hold a personal and symbolic meaning to us, such as the Pistoletto in the entry. As part of the Persian wedding ceremony, the bride and groom are gifted a mirror, which is supposed to reflect the life they build together (which is why we have it as the first thing you see when you walk in). My mother-in-law decided to put her own spin on this by gifting us a Pistoletto, which serves the function of a mirror, while taking the form of art and having a connection to their Italian heritage.
Biggest Challenge: The biggest issue we faced with our space was separating a wide open area into different rooms. The industrial nature of our apartment meant that our living space consisted of one, large open room, which needed to be broken up into an entry, a living room, a dining room, and kitchen. I didn’t want to put up any walls, which would block the light, so we used furniture to create separation, while still maintaining an open flow. I won’t say it’s been straightforward: It’s involved adding pieces over time and moving others around to create that right balance.
Biggest Indulgence: Hmmm… assuming this means which piece in my home is my biggest indulgence. I’d say our mattress. While it’s not the most expensive piece in our home anymore, at one time it was… and the investment was worth every penny. Climbing into bed at night is this inexplicable, super personal feeling where I know that I’m truly in my own home. And it’s a comfort that can’t be replicated by anywhere else.
Best Advice: Invest in timeless quality pieces that are crafted to last. Use those pieces (such as rugs, furniture, art) as the foundation for your home and make sure you ABSOLUTELY LOVE them because (i) they’re expensive, (ii) they’re difficult to move around / replace and (iii) they’re the largest pieces in your home so no matter how much you accessorize, it won’t fix what fundamentally feels and looks wrong to you.
What’s your best home secret? Shopping: I source most products at trade shows, artisan markets, and local, independent retailers; it’s where I get to connect directly with the people behind the products—it allows me to know the story of what I’m purchasing. Plus, it gives me the opportunity to source more unique and better crafted products at a more transparent price than I would by shopping from big box retailers. It takes more time and it’s not quite as convenient, but your home is personal and should be a reflection of the people who live within it.
The Perfect Hotel Bed: Given my line of work (luxury bedding), I often get asked: (i) do you make your bed like that every day? and (ii) do you iron your bedding to get it looking pressed and pristine? The answer to the first question is yes—I make my bed first thing, every morning. It’s how I mentally wake up and get my day started. I’ve specifically styled my bed in a way that makes it super easy for me to make in under two minutes, so it doesn’t feel like a time-consuming chore!
- My fitted sheet snuggly fits on my bed, with the elastic tucked under the mattress to make sure no one wakes up tangled in the sheets.
- My flat sheet and quilted coverlet are tightly tucked under the mattress at the foot of the bed, which keeps it in place and prevents anyone from hogging the covers. I actually only sleep with the flat sheet and quilted coverlet most of the year, so in the morning, all I have to do is smooth it flat on the bed and tuck the sides into the foot board of the bed.
- My duvet cover actually stays folded at the foot of the bed for most of the year, except when it gets really cold. At night, I simply remove it (folded in thirds) and place it in the chest across from the bed. This significantly cuts down on laundry each week and keeps it looking pressed and crisp.
- My pillowcases are hidden behind the two rows of shams, you never see wrinkles or drool stains (which happen to all of us!). At night, the euro shams and king shams both pop into that chest across the bed, along with the duvet.
The answer to the second question is, kind of. But it’s not as involved as you may think. There are certain shortcuts which help give that five-star hotel look without slaving over the ironing board.
- When you transfer your sheets from the wash to the dryer, shake them out and fold them. I know it sounds counterintuitive, but it will prevent the wrinkled ball of a mess that happens when you throw your sheets in the dryer.
- Always dry your bedding on medium heat setting; hot temperatures will set any wrinkles that occur during the wash / dry cycles.
- Remove your bedding from the dryer a few minutes before the cycle is done—while they’re still warm and steamy. If you miss that “window” throw in a damp sock in the dryer and run it for 10 minutes to “re-steam” your bedding. Then fold your bedding on a flat surface (such as your mattress) and smooth out any wrinkles with your hands.
- As a final touch, iron the cuff on your flat sheet and pillowcases and pass a warm iron over your shams. That way the parts of your bed that actually show will live up to your 5-star expectations.
- Rug – Antique Persian Rug, woven by my great-grandfather’s apprentice
- Art – Samsung Frame
- Chess Board – Man Ray Chess Board
- Vessels – Burnt Wooden Vessels from Indonesia
- TV Console – Roberta Schilling
- Art – Lee Ufan, Dialogue
- Coffee Table – Duas Cores Coffee Table by Branco & Preto
- Chaise Longue – TRNK
- Arm Chairs – Roberta Schilling
- Throw Pillows – Missoni Home
- Throw – Missoni Home
- Coffee Table – Duas Cores Coffee Table by Branco & Preto
- Crystal Accessories – Lalique Tortue Vase and Nemours Bowl
- Wooden Tray – Artisan-Made in Mexico
- Plates – Hand-painted by Japanese Artist
- Bar Cart – Artisan-Made in Brazil
- Bar Cart Accessories – Lalique Nogent Bowl, Baccarat Diamant Tumbler, George Jensen Manhattan Bar Accessories
- Art – Lee Ufan, Dialogue
- Note about corks: We started collecting wine corks 5 years ago; each one is marked with the date the wine was drank and who we enjoyed the wine with.
- Dining Table – Muniz Lucite Table
- Tabletop – Matches 1995 Luisa Plates
- Vitrine – ABC Home
- Console – Artisan-Made in Brazil
- Dining Room Chairs – Roberta Schilling
- Art (Sketches) – Christo, The Gates
- Art (Calligraphy) – Persian Calligrapher, Civilization Begins with Love
- Art (Skis) – Jean Michel Basquiat x Bomber
- Bed – Bernhardt Sophia Crested Bed
- Bedding – 10 Grove (The Crosby, Coverlet Set | The Hudson, Duvet Cover + Shams | The Irving, A Little Something Extra Sheet Set)
- Rug – Ancient Persian Rug, gifted by my grandfather to my parents for their first home, who then gifted it to my us after our wedding
- Lamps – Robert Abbey Table Lamps
- Chair – Bernhardt
- Mirror – ABC Home