Expect The Unexpected
Surprise, and the sense of delight that comes with it, are two of Kelly Wearstler’s masterstrokes. Her design for this SoHo pied-à-terre evokes both reactions in spades.
Playful, daring and often tastefully over-the-top, the interior designs of Kelly Wearstler have helped define contemporary West Coast style. Her approach happens to be perfectly suited to New York as well, as proven by this three-story penthouse residence that rises high above the cobbled streets of SoHo.
Destined to be the clients’ pied-à-terre, the project began with a complete renovation of the 1,800- square-foot interior space. “We opened the walls and created a circular staircase with the intention of
making it the heart of all three floors, unifying the series of spaces,” Wearstler explains. Custom, hand-painted, trompe-l’oeil silk wallcovering was designed specifically for the flow of the staircase, which spirals from the entry upward to the top penthouse floor.
Art and furnishings are thoughtfully merged in every room. The artist Peter Shire created a custom console table and enamel brass cabinet. There is hand-selected furniture by Gio Ponti, Paul Evans and Jacques Jarrige. Pieces by young, emerging artists are displayed throughout, and a vintage 1970s wood painted figural sculpture commands attention at the second story entry.
Signature Kelly Wearstler touches, such as the chevronpatterned stone slabs that cover the walls and floor of the master bathroom, add drama and the
delight of the unexpected. Wearstler credits her clients for allowing these qualities: “Not only were they open to ideas; they encouraged us to push our ideas further, to surprise them.”
The result of the collaboration is a richly ornamented jewel box that, for Wearstler, is like a microcosm of the city itself. “New York is the ultimate metropolis, alive with energy, passion and ideas,” she says. “Its character changes and evolves; it remains a place where traditions are kept, yet pushed to the limits. This apartment is in many ways a good example of that. So many classic elements (the grand stair, the urban terrace) are represented here, yet reinvented and refreshed.”
Striking a balance between distinctive materiality, spirited silhouettes and artisanal textures, the Kelly Wearstler furniture collection reflects the designer’s signature aesthetic and is now available at Safavieh.
The globe-hopping Kelly Wearstler shares with us some of her favorite things:
RECENTLY READ BOOK: “The Blessing of a B Minus” by Wendy Mogel
PERSONAL SCENT: Régime des Fleurs’ “Nymphaea Caerulea”
FOREIGN CITY TO VISIT: Paris is the chicest city.
ISLAND: We visited East Java on a recent trip to Indonesia and found it absolutely breathtaking.
U.S. HOTEL: Crosby Street Hotel in New York City
FOREIGN HOTEL: Nihiwatu on Sumba Island, Indonesia
FLOWER: Cherry blossoms, wild forsythia, peonies
HOLIDAY: Halloween FILM: “The Lion” SONG: Anything by Post Malone or Trippie Redd
BREED OF DOG: I love all animals! My family has adopted three dogs, and I always encourage people to rescue and adopt, not shop.
The entire collection is available at Safavieh’s Kelly Wearstler gallery in Glen Cove, New York.
- Kips Bay Charmer - Designed for relaxed living, this apartment has touches of glamour that also make it perfect for entertaining.
- Windows on the Sound - Safavieh designers bring a visual drama to a Gatsby- era showhouse on Long Island's North Shore.
- The Last Word with Thom Filicia - The makeover maven touts the importance of simplicity and surprise.
- Master of Modern - In the virtuoso interiors of Thomas O’Brien, traditional elements are always used to modern effect.
- Room to Roam - Soaring, light- filled spaces and a cozy den lend variety to a designer show house.
- From The Painter’s Studio - Do look down: that gorgeous Safavieh rug beneath your feet was literally designed by hand.