From a Rococo-influenced bedroom to a botanic-inspired living room, the Kips Bay Decorator Show House brings history, mystery and whimsy to New York’s iconic Riverside Drive.
After a three-year imposed hiatus, the Kips Bay Decorator Show House returned to New York in extraordinary style this year. A group of 22 handpicked designers have collectively refurbished a historic Beaux Arts mansion on Riverside Drive, respecting its historic roots and imbuing it with eclectic style and opulent adornment. It’s worth marveling at both the speed in which the designers have effected their transformations and also the sheer level of detail achieved. The all-star team of creatives features acclaimed interior designers and rising stars from across the country including Clive Lonstein, Ghislaine Viñas, Halden Interiors, Jay Jeffers, Janice Parker, Lillian Wu, Neal Beckstedt, Penny Drue Baird, and Sasha Bikoff.
While the show is a veritable aesthetic feast for design lovers, it also raises much-needed funds for Kips Bay Boys & Girls Club, and the shophouse itself is on the market for $24,000,000 through Douglas Elliman.
Each room conveys a compelling narrative, but these caught our eye the most in this year’s epic ensemble:
Primary bedroom by Mary McDonald
In a nod to women of centuries past, Mary McDonald’s bedroom is a sumptuous overlay of Schumacher’s Shell Grotto wallpaper, vintage and antique furnishings, decorative upholstery and floor coverings by Patterson Flynn, and fabrics, trim, bedlinen (from Peacock Alley) and drapery – also from Schumacher. A Liz O’Brien ceiling fixture adds a contemporary, if not aquatic, touch to offset to the intoxicating result.
Bathroom by Sergio Mercado
In a complete re-work of an outdated and dysfunctional primary bathroom, the collective at Sergio Mercado have created a dreamy en-suite that brings a number of magical yet durable products materials into one space. Nuage Japanese washi lights preside over a freestanding Kohler bath and set the tone for the dreamy aesthetic. Solid stone console fabrication is offset by bathroom walls in a collaboration between Mercado and ABC Stone. Jennair fixtures add an additional element of luxury to the pared-back palette.
Kitchen by Wesley Moon
That Wesley Moon’s kitchen was initiated and completed in just eight weeks is as impressive as it is unbelievable. Inheriting a cramped and nondescript kitchen, Moon has created a thoroughly majestic transformation that brings in numerous periods, high-level detailing, extraordinary creativity and an overlay of art and objets that creates both interest and texture. Bespoke millwork includes Edwardian-inspired custom plaster mouldings, hand-painted cabinetry, and his signature tiled island detailing with louvered tiles from Ann Sacks – cleverly re-used in flat finish on the backsplash. Holly Hunt sconces sit atop a beautiful banquette in Rosemary Hallgarten fabric; additional light fittings are from Apparatus studio, and a Paavo Tynell chandelier bring historic grandeur to the room. Backlit objects from Studio Tashtego, Hostler Burrows and Moon’s own home add the final spectacular layers.
Library by Jay Jeffers
There is interest as far as the eye could see in Jay Jeffers’ intimate library. A duotone palette of rust and gray materially contrasts with rich and refined antique flourishes and artisanal works. These include the elemental desk by Aaron Poritz, a desk chair from Cuff Studio, and a jute rug by Mark Nelson.
Parlor by Ghislaine Viñas
“This room has a more European feel than perhaps we’re used to seeing in New York,” suggested Ghislaine Viñas when discussing her studio’s distinctly bold and intentionally over-scaled approach to the parlor. It’s perhaps unsurprising, given the Netherlands birthplace of the South African designer, who has used strong color and unexpected combinations of form and pattern to great effect.
Felted murals by Mark Mulroney layered atop a bespoke wallpaper from Wolf-Gordon, moody lighting by RBW, a bright yellow scalloped coffee table and a number of pieces from studio favorite The Future Perfect combine in surprising yet harmonious combination.
Laundry room by Fairfax Dorn Projects
Adorned with passerine birds, the Pompeii wallpaper by Jennifer Shorto was the launch point for Fairfax Dorn Projects’ multitasking laundry room. A sisal carpet from Sacco Carpet, shelving accessories from Aero, window treatments by the Shade Store, and a JennAir washer and dryer round out the interior.
Dining Room by Georgis & Mirgorodsky
Just imagine the multi-sensory, intimate gatherings and soirees that could take place in this magical space conceived by acclaimed design office Georgis & Mirgorodsky. Referencing the Levant – a geographical and cultural region bridging Europe, Asia and Africa – the team were inspired by historic interiors in Cairo, Istanbul, and Damascus. Upon entry, one is welcomed by a bar with an English Regency commode, Damien Hirst’s painting The Golden Jubilee (Yellow), and a whimsical Le Nopal armchair, designed by Georgis & Mirgorodsky.
Smoky gray velvet corduroy-upholstered walls create a louche backdrop for an imagined cosmopolitan group of sophisticated libertines.Georgis & Mirgorodsky
The main room is both a dining room and hookah lounge, where guests are invited to relax on sumptuously upholstered pieces including a shearling-upholstered Bombola sofa and poufs surrounding a walnut dining table, all designed by Georgis & Mirgorodsky. Art and objets include Julian Schnabel’s painting Portrait of Michel Comte, a second-century-AD Roman sculpture of Hercules, Thebes stools, and a monumental Coromandel screen laid out on a 19th-century Oushak rug below an 18th-century Italian Neoclassical Egyptian Revival gilt wood chandelier.
Georgis & Mirgorodsky describe it beautifully: “Smoky gray velvet corduroy-upholstered walls create a louche backdrop for a varied collection of art, antiques, and custom furnishings for an imagined cosmopolitan group of sophisticated libertines.”
Read more: Interior Designers I Interiors | Design | Show Homes | New York