A client’s affinity for marble, gallery walls, and shades of grey drove designer Crystal Sinclair’s airy, refined direction in this gorgeous Greenwich Village apartment.
Photos by Sean Litchfield
One look at this Greenwich Village apartment, and all sinister associations with the color grey instantly dissolve. A closer look inside, and suddenly words like airy, refined, and even sexy, take the place of melancholy and gloomy. The designer to whom we owe this shift in mindset?, who masterfully embraced textures, art, and the occasional pop of blue and teal in her clients’ grey-toned, two-bedroom pad.
“The clients knew from the beginning that they wanted grey,” Crystal recalls. “They also loved the idea of black accents in a light space—the space reflects this, as there is lots of contrast. There are a lot of neutrals but also so many textures: the grey’s in the silk rug, fabric sectional, wool felt pillows, woven wool pillows, grey paints, grey veining in the marble.”
The resulting space may be far from dreary, but the same can’t be said for the initial state of the apartment. Upon tackling the redesign, the place was in need of major renovations. And to add another layer—and unexpected significance—to the project, Crystal gave birth to her daughter in the midst of the overhaul.
“This apartment will always have a special place in my heart,” she shares. “It took me through pregnancy and was my creative outlet while mapping my new life out as a mother. It all worked out; the contractors really understood and their patience surprised me—everyone worked together.”
As a team, she and Custom Construction Group Inc. reworked the kitchen—opening it up into the dining area to yield a more seamless flow—in addition to completely gutting the two bathrooms. One of her clients’ main requests: plenty of marble, a striking complement to the abundance of grey. Because her clients are habitual cooks, Crystal opted for highly durable quartz countertops in the kitchen in lieu of easily stainable marble, and instead incorporated marble in the backsplash. She also used part of this same slab to clad the wall in one of the bathrooms and to serve as the tops of both bathroom vanities.
And while marble is an obvious point of interest within the apartment, it’s art that really serves as the main showcase amid a sea of luxe grey color and texture.
“We knew art would be the focal point throughout,” Crystal reveals. “We started each room with basic pieces but finished each space working off of the artwork selected for the space.”
Crystal and her client worked closely to select each piece of art, spending significant time on the phone, via email, and over Instagram messages. The two even set their alarms to when certain pieces were going on sale, like the Ariele Alasko brush or the Paul Kremer print in the living room, to ensure they got to them before they sold out. To display the pieces in an artful way, Crystal opted for a ledge in the living room, where she displayed an eye-catching display of graphic abstract pieces.
“My client was mad (in a good way) over gallery walls and wanted some sort of gallery in each room,” Crystals says. “The ledge provided a grouping of art, thus a gallery in a different manner.”
In the main bedroom, her client requested the art be a bright and sensual beach setting. To avoid the ubiquitous trend of umbrellas and surf scenes, Crystal selected a large-scale overhead photograph by Dinesh Boaz—featuring the same blues visible in the living room—which pops amongst the creams, whites, and sumptuous textures.
In the guest bedroom, Crystal drove the design in a more bohemian direction. She and her client created an edgy gallery wall with pieces from Artfully Walls. To create a luxe boho feel, she flanked the bed with two oversized navy lamps, which tie back to a lumbar bed pillow with extra long tassels.
“Scale is everything!” Crystal assures.
One look at her carefully curated art and accessory choices, and you’ll take her word.
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