The City of Lights has been in our thoughts lately. The city that brought us the Eiffel Tower illuminated in lights, the moving picture, and the Age of Enlightenment…Paris has for over 400 years been at the center of what is modern, forward thinking, and chic. Values of liberty, progress, reason, tolerance, and fraternity were championed, and spread, from Paris. Taste was also spread from the court of Louis XVI and the Petit Trianon to the modernism of Jean-Michel Frank and Le Corbusier, to the minimalism of Jean Nouvel and Andre Putnam. As citizens, friends and aesthetes, we owe so much to the Parisians.
I try to write posts that I hope may be of some interest, service and even inspiration. Lately my thoughts keep returning to Paris. For while Milan has an edge on the contemporary spirit, and California leads with a laid-back attitude, Paris shines with good taste learned from looking, mixing, editing and living with beautiful objects. Even our California cool owes much to the way of observation and presentation that only Parisians carry off with such ease. We can learn a lot from this spirit.
Here is one Parisian home that combines style with smart detailing and maximum storage, providing plenty of design elements that we can incorporate into our own spaces. So until your next trip to Paris, enjoy this home by one of the best taste masters working today.
The curved sofa provides a variety of seating in this living room.
The varied texture and blocking of this fireplace adds drama and interest.
Adding built-ins along the perimeter provides ample storage and display space, while opening up a smart progress of passages that connect the rooms without interfering with seating. It’s also easier to conceal roller shades.
This vignette shows off the maximum effect: blonde oak, bleached walnut, brass, black and grey.
The entry door in brass and steel is a dramatic, decorative element in the entry. I grew up with this floor lamp in my parents home…maybe this is why I like this apartment so much?
The kitchen is clean and efficient, and uses minimally detailed cabinet, black granite counters and a back splash of back painted glass.
The breakfast nook maximizes use and space, which offering maximum design: notice the curved wall, cove ceiling, and built-in curved banquette. An antique light fixture added warmth and personality.
This office has an integrated daybed with bookshelves. Perfect for a nap while working, a cozy spot to read a report, or an extra bed for guests.
Just beyond the office is the master bedroom, where pendant fixtures free up space on these tiny night stands.
Maximizing storage is the key in most of our homes. This swing-out door concealing the television when not in use.
This design and materiality of the master bathroom echoes those in some of the great European villas. Brown marble floor combines cream walls. The curve of the tub niche follows the curve of the tub, while mimicking that in the breakfast room. The shower has a step up, a smart solution in renovation.
Not a shabby place to call home. Don’t you love Paris?
David Bjørngaard, December 2015