Matt & Melissa - my first design clients! After starting a very beautiful relationship, they were moving in together. I've known Melissa for a while now so when she broke the news, not only was I super excited for them, I knew this was going to be a project close to my heart. That & she might have also shouted HELP! Her new place felt like a guy's dorm room & reminded one of a dark cave where light hardly ever shines through. I'm never one to turn down a good challenge so I braced myself for what I was about to see. She was right...the place needed some love.
Decorating a rental apartment always poses design challenges because structurally there isn't much you can change. You work with what you have and make the space feel like your own and give it personality. Add to that a limited budget (which isn't a bad thing!) and you have to really love the thrill of finding the right piece at the right price. Taking the time to understand your clients' needs and their story is therefore the most important thing you'll do in the design process.
Melissa works in PR and is charming and chic with an amazing fashion sense (she's also one of the most organized people I've met when it comes to planning her wardrobe). Inspired by old Hollywood/classic styles, she pretty much carries Paris in her heart! Matt works as a TV producer and is a huge cinema buff. You'll find bookcases full of DVD collections that he claims are 'prized possessions' (I was able to convince him to part with some of them ;) ). Matt's vibrant personality means that things are always light, fun and interesting. Bring both of them together & you're going for a modern look with hints of nostalgic and classic finds in an airy and brighter apartment.
Here is the small but significant transformation. A change of paint colour (Sea Froth, Benjamin Moore), a new wallpaper treatment (Sherwood Taupe, Graham & Brown) and a bit of styling can make a world of a difference.
Coming home from a long day of work should always be about comfort and warmth. It's the worst feeling to come to a place that you cannot enjoy or call your own. The work lies in the small details - enhancing what's important in your life be it through things you enjoy, objects that remind you of good memories, colours to liven things up or just a more functional space. Where you live should tell your story and I love that Matt & Melissa's redecorated place speaks to their new phase together.
First clients always have a special place in your heart, especially if they're as lovely as mine. Thank you for welcoming me into your home and allowing me to turn a man cave into a comfortable space for the two of you. Hope you continue to enjoy & grow in it.