Nashville Skyline: a modern point of view

September 5th, 2014

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Last year a young professional athlete came to me in need of design help for a Midtown Nashville penthouse he was in the process of buying. One of Nashville’s swankiest addresses with 180-degree views of the city and purportedly the Nashville base for Taylor Swift, we embarked upon transforming the space from traditional to über modern. Far more befitting a young Swiss transplant.
The apartment had been professionally decorated and done well, just not in my client’s style. Nor mine. A LOT of beige, far too many earth tones and not much personality.
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We began, as I always do, with paint. We repainted the entire apartment, walls, trim and ceilings, and replaced carpeting where it existed. My tried and true Farrow and Ball color, Cornforth White, was used throughout the main part of the apartment which instantly brightened the already sun drenched rooms. We worked with one of my favorite stores in Nashville, Nouveau Classics, on many of the pieces. We chose an Eilersen Tub sofa and ottoman. I cannot convey how much I love this company. Handmade in Denmark with the utmost regard to quality and craftsmanship, they are beautiful and so very comfortable. Tomesella Podio coffee table, Nuevo Living marble side tables, Nuevo Living Conner Chair and my favorite little West Elm white task lamp.
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This area of the apartment was staged as an office, which I doubt was ever used. When presented with the option of a reading corner or bar, my client just rolled his eyes at me and I took my leave to go begin designs for a bar.
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At the time we were selecting art for this project, we were personally buying a few of Gray Malin’s Á la Plage prints. I brought my client hundreds of art options and it was Gray Malin’s Prada Marfa series that he immediately said yes to. It couldn’t be more perfect above the white lacquer bar.
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My client did not want to incur the expense of replacing the backsplash or granite in the kitchen, so we opted to update the seating and pendant lights.
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The smallest changes can have a huge impact. Tom Dixon Mirror Ball pendants and Calligaris New York Swivel counter stools gave the kitchen a much more modern look.
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The previous owner had used a round dining table which was ideal for the space. I campaigned heavily for a round Saarinen marble table but in the end, I lost.
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My client was set on this Restoration Hardware table which I actually ended up loving. I did, however, manage to convince him to use the Knoll Tulip chairs. The light is the Brera Suspension Lamp by Creative Mary, a beautiful custom lighting company based in Portugal.
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My client loved the Warhol gun prints and I ended up just buying them on art.com for next to nothing. We had them framed nicely by Midtown Gallery here in Nashville and they look great.
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The guest room was dark and not at all welcoming.
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We used Farrow and Ball’s Dimpse on the walls and thick linen draperies. We upholstered a Camerich bed in a deep navy with all white linen bedding. Artemide Tolomeo sconces and mod loft nightstands. My favorite is the Brooklyn Bridge mural by Flavor Paper.
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It’s the little details that give a space its personality….
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An aerial view from the second story. All in all, the apartment feels modern, bright and infused with character. Now I just need to figure out which apartment Miss Swift owns and slip my card under her door.
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Ever so many thanks to Brad + Jen of Q Avenue Photography for their beautiful (as always) photos. And to James Wilson and Carrie Crowell for their help on the shoot and throughout the project.

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