Homepolish designer Emma Lesser went back to basics in this spacious NoHo loft with an industrial touch.
Photos by Nick Glimenakis.
Every city has a personality—Paris is charming and chic, Hong Kong is electric and energetic, and New York is sleek and streamlined—and sometimes you just can’t help it when that personality seeps into the confines of your apartment, whether it’s a Notting Hill flat or an Upper West Side walkup. On the border between New York City’s NoHo and Union Square neighborhoods, old-fashioned industrial met new-age minimalism in this space that was crafted by Homepolish designer Emma Lesser.
Because the building was originally utilized as a tailoring factory in 1925 and was then converted into apartments 50 years later, the apartment has amazingly tall windows and even taller ceilings. Ira and Emma ran with the industrial aesthetic that already defined the space, hoping to accentuate its boldness with high-contrast, minimalist interior design. Black window casings and stair railings add a sense of drama and contrast the brightness of the spacious loft.
One of the most unique aspects in creating this space was the consideration required for Ira and her partner MJ’s furry friends—three cats named Gala, Chubby, and Kiyo, no less! MJ and the cats had a long journey ahead of them, as they were moving from Manila to live with Ira in New York City. Because of this, Emma wanted to ensure that the creatures felt safe and right at home in their new space. Even though accommodating a space’s design to the needs of pets was new for Emma, she handled it with cat-like reflexes, implementing cat-friendly spots like a pipe play feature (pictured above, with Kiyo modeling) and a custom cat hideaway under the kitchen island.
Because Emma had to be subtle in her statements, she decided that the bedroom should be kept neutral, but with the rich patina of a faux-finish that resembles concrete. The texture, skillfully applied with a paint brush by a specialty artisan, works two-fold. Not only does it enhance the industrial vibe of the loft, but it also has a functional purpose, blocking out any noise caused by rowdy neighbors. Warm and cozy (yet still cool) bed linens complete the look and make for an inviting space to fall into after a long day.