Sarah & Sam's Crafty Waterfront District Condo

Sarah & Sam's Crafty Waterfront District Condo

Andrea Sparacio
Sep 27, 2013

Name: Sarah & Sam; cats Kubrick & Stanley
Location: Columbia Street Waterfront, Brooklyn, New York
Size: 1,000 square feet
Years lived in: 6 months; owned

Sarah and Sam didn’t take long to make their place look awesome. Only six-months after settling in, they have added unique touches to their new Brooklyn condo. One standout piece is a wooden headboard handcrafted by Sarah's dad. The wood is recycled from old pallets found at the post office, and was built to fit perfectly between the two window moldings. The headboard and surrounding views give the bedroom a cabin-by-the-beach feel, as if you were retreating into dreamland away from the city. Surfing photographs taken by the couple themselves while honeymooning in Portugal tie in nicely with their waterfront neighborhood.

Sarah is a Product Manager at Ralph Lauren, and Sam is an Assistant Editor in film and television. The couple's creative eye has helped them bring great personality to this two-bedroom condominium. Practical meets artistic with a sophisticated palette and a few pops of color - everything from art made by friends to bright oranges in a bowl on the kitchen table. Every piece has a story, whether it's a desk built by Sarah's grandfather, or the teak bookshelf they dragged up the stairs when it wouldn't fit in the elevator.

Kubrick, the orange cat, was timid at first, hiding like a lump under the quilt (which is hilariously visible in a few of the bedroom shots) before warming up and turning into a little camera hog. This family is as charming as their lovely home, and they are very happy and grateful to be living in this beautiful space.

Best of luck to you guys! You can also visit Sarah's blog (photos taken by Sam) for some fashion fun at

Apartment Therapy Survey:

My Style: Vintage/antique, influenced by Adirondack camps and farmhouse style. (Sarah): My parents have moved many times over the years, and have collected a fair amount of furniture. Lucky for us, they’ve been more than willing to part with all of the pieces that I’ve always eyed. A lot of those pieces (like the Hoosier or the buffet that we use as the entertainment cabinet) really set the tone for the apartment.

Favorite Element: The headboard that Sarah’s dad made us from old pallet wood pieces. We already have him lined up for several more pieces.

Biggest Challenge: We had to wait about a year and a half from when we had our offer accepted on the apartment until we could actually move in (for reasons beyond our control). Waiting was definitely the first “biggest challenge.” Then when we finally were able to move, it we had to keep reminding ourselves that we didn’t need to do everything all at once — that it’s a process. That is still a challenge!

What Friends Say: “You just moved?!” and “Where did you get your headboard?” This allows us to proudly tell the story about how my dad made it, how it sat in his basement for about a year waiting for us to move in, and how we installed it.

Biggest Embarrassment: We didn’t actually take the TV down to paint – we just wrapped it in plastic and painted around it as best we could. It took Sam plus two of our friends to get it on the wall. Sarah wanted nothing to do with moving it again! Also cat hair – with two cats it’s impossible to control.

Proudest DIY: The walk-in closet that Sam and our friend Brian spent the better part of a Sunday putting together.

Biggest Indulgence: Other than the actual apartment? Probably the washer and dryer. It has been pretty life changing. And fresh flowers.

Best Advice: Think things through — not everything needs to be done at once. And paint before you move in.

Dream Sources: Brimfield Antique Show without the crowds, and with enough time and money to source the amazing items in pictures Sarah finds on various home blogs. Also Room and Board, Find Home Furnishings, Restoration Hardware, and amazing antique stores on Atlantic Avenue in Brooklyn.

Resources of Note:


  • Olympic: Bad Lands (lighter gray), Silver Service (darker grey), Gibraltar Gray (bedroom gray)
  • Valspar: Night Sky (blue)


  • Wire coat rack: (ask parents for name)
  • Bookshelf: antique from Sarah’s grandmother
  • Mixed Media Drawing: Palden Weinreb (a wedding present from our very talented friend and groomsmen)


  • Buffet used as entertainment cabinet: Antique handed down from Sarah’s parents
  • Large painting behind the couch: Eric Schlesinger (Sam’s very talented uncle)
  • Bookshelves: Ikea and handmade by former neighbor’s friend
  • Gallery wall: Black and White photo print – Stanley Kubrick; Subway poster – wedding gift from a friend (all the more special because it was our subway stop at our first apartment together); Man with a pipe drawing – Sarah’s dad bought outside the Louve in 1970 while he was motorcycling around Europe
  • Couch: bought from a neighbor
  • Pillows and Blanket: Pottery Barn, H&M, and Woolrich
  • Vintage Speakers: Sam’s Dad
  • Bookshelf lights: Lowes with Edison Bulbs


  • Hoosier: antique from Sarah’s parents
  • Table and Chairs: from Sarah’s parents (they bought it for fifty cents at a garage sale over 40 years ago)
  • Teak Bookshelf: Find Home Furnishing, Brooklyn, NY


  • Wine Rack: Crate and Barrel (wedding gift from a friend)
  • Utensil Holder: Fishes Eddey
  • Butcher Block: Boos Block


  • Headboard: Sarah’s Dad
  • Headboard Pictures: Taken during a surfing lesson on our honeymoon in Portugal – we can’t remember which one of us actually took the pictures
  • Dressers: from Sarah’s Grandmother and Parents
  • Wooden Soda Boxes and Printer’s Drawer: Yesterdays News Antiques, Brooklyn NY
  • Theorom Paintings – Wedding Invitation and Mirror: Sarah’s Aunt
  • Framed wedding photo: by Emily McManamy
  • Screen Print of Boy with Dove: Pon, commissioned for Bansky show in NYC
  • Picture board: Sarah DIY
  • Bedding: Restoration Hardware, Sarah’s Grandmother (quilt), Ikea
  • Headboard lights: Lowes with Eddison Bulbs
  • Red Lockers: Ikea
  • Antique Trunk: from Sarah’s parents
  • Stained Glass lamps: Sarah’s Grandmother
  • African Basket: gift from Sarah’s parent


  • Couch: Raymore and Flannigan
  • Blanket: Pendleton
  • Pillows: Ikea
  • Desk: Built by Sarah’s grandfather
  • Bookshelf: Ikea
  • Mirror: Bought from Neighbor
  • War Rhino Print: from Sam’s Grandfather
  • Coffee Table: Antique army trunk


  • Bookshelf: Find Home Furnishing, Brooklyn, NY
  • Antique Glass jars: various antique stores in Brooklyn and Adirondacks. Used as vases for flowers at our wedding
  • Silver tea set: Sarah’s Grandmother
  • Leatherface Illustration: Selene Rosenberg (Sam’s very talented Sister)
  • Silk Screen Print: Palden Wienreb
  • White Pine Camp Photograph: Gift from Sarah’s parents, where we got married

Thanks, Sam & Sarah!

(Images: Andrea Sparacio)

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