Brooklyn Apartment Transformation - Reportage


A little blog post to give you more details about the story recently published on our home page

This young American couple living in this great apartment in Fort Greene came back to the US in October 2016, after 3 years spent in Zurich, Switzerland. Shortly after their move, they contacted us to help furnish their main living space and figure out how to make it look 'together'. 

The starting point

When they left for Europe, they knew their expat situation was going to be temporary so they did not purchase anything of value and did not bring much from Switzerland (apart from a few souvenirs here and there) so we were starting pretty much from scratch. The only things that we had to work with were:

  • The artworks inherited from a grandfather, finally in their possession after their few years abroad. 
  • A dining table purchased at Ikea and 2 wishbone chairs (the last two being inherited as well).
  • A black TV console (and flat screen TV).
  • Rugs purchased at Target.
  • A gray sofa they had already purchased and were waiting to be delivered.
  • 3 Empire lamps (mid-size).

The process

When we first met, the couple had already filled our style questionnaire so we already knew what their favorite colors were (purple and blue), whether they liked patterns (not really), how much color they wanted (pops of it here and there), how much accessories/furniture (a balanced amount) and what style they were attracted to (modern and contemporary). Our initial discussion went deeper into those questions, understanding how they were using the space so far, how they felt about the current layout and what was their biggest concern at this point (lighting in the evening as they had just 3 lamps, great for a traditional office space but not ideal for a living room).

After that initial meeting, we gave them 10 days to create and share a Pinterest board with us to see what aesthetic they were gravitating towards and understand better their preferences.  

Personal selection from the client (detail)

Personal selection from the client (detail)

After careful review of the items they had selected, it became clear to us they were gravitating towards airy elements, preferably with some sort of wires that got us immediately thinking about the American sculptor Alexander Calder. 

Examples of Calder's work.

Examples of Calder's work.

You can admire Calder's work at prestigious places such as the Guggenheim, the Tate Modern, MoMA etc - and his work is famous for being light, airy and whimsical at times. He was the inventor of the mobile structure as we know it today - a great mix between art and design. 

With that, we got started and shared with them the concept below.

Concept board submitted

Concept board submitted

Typically, we present this board in person to discuss but since the couple was traveling for the Thanksgiving break (and we wanted them to take advantage of the Black Friday sales), we recorded a little video to walk them through the concept... And they loved it! 

They picked the option 1 of the chair to match the wishbone chairs they already owned and we shared with them the full shopping list (after suggesting alternatives for the rug they were not fond of). 

The challenge

A few elements were from a vendor that has an average 4 to 6 weeks lead time for delivery, plus, the sofa they had ordered was being delayed every week. In other words, our client was on a roll to wait until March to get it all complete which was far too late.

The solution

We searched alternative options with vendors that would deliver quicker - the clients also searched on their end, providing options and asking what we thought would be best for their interior. After a few back and forth, we managed to update the entire shopping list with more acceptable delivery times - for the same price (sometimes even lower).

The result

Mid-January, everything had arrived, had been installed and they sent us pictures of their new space. As the last step in the process, we offered to go shopping for staging elements on their behalf and scheduled a last meeting to stage their interior and take pictures of the final result. Yay!


If you wish to view the full gallery, go here.

We want to warmly thank this lovely couple as it was such as great experience working with them and let us take pictures of their new interior. They also left us a stellar review which is always greatly appreciated!