Clever by Architectural Digest

A Circa-1899 Carriage House in Brooklyn Gets a Luminous Refresh

When one designer-academic couple toured a property in Brooklyn, they never expected to fall in love with the circa-1899 carriage house across the street instead. “We said to our broker, ‘Now that’s something we’d love!’ He asked around and found out it belonged to the same owner. We made an off-market offer and it was accepted,” says one half of the couple.

As charming as it was, the 1,000-square-foot interior needed serious work. The layout felt crowded and there were several shortcomings, in

Inside a Portland Bungalow Where Summer Never Ends

When interior designer Anna-Jaël Hotzel and her husband, designer and engineer Evan Livingston, first toured the Portland bungalow that would be their next home, it was the garden that sold them. “We had been to about 60 open houses, and when we walked into the garden of this one, we knew right away we wanted to live here,” recalls Anna-Jaël, who worked in advertising and prop styling before establishing her own Portland-based interior design firm, Kollective. To be fair, it was the 10-foot-tall

This Melbourne Home Is a Fantasia of Colorful Forms

When they purchased their Melbourne home nearly ten years ago, Sarah Auld and her husband, Matt, saw past its shortcomings. “My husband loved the location. He had grown up in the area, with his grandparents having lived just two streets away,” says Sarah, an elementary school art teacher who also works in visual merchandising. At the time, the house ticked two basic boxes—it was within 10 kilometers of the city and it had 2 bedrooms. With a baby on the way, the couple decided to put off any majo

A Seaside Bungalow in New York Where Time Stands Still

In the New York neighborhood of Far Rockaway, just steps away from the beach, is a row of storybook bungalows that look like they belong in France, the Caribbean, or New York in the 1950s. “These bungalows are a bit of a forgotten thread of New York’s urban fabric,” says architect Jonathan Chesley, one half of the husband-and-wife team behind the New York–based interdisciplinary practice KTISMAstudio. For him and his partner in life and work, landscape architect Alexandria Donati, the area felt

This Hudson Valley Kitchen Is a Triumph in Creative Upcycling

Longtime friends Jiminie Ha and Jeremy Parker had never considered purchasing a property together. Not until they came across a listing for a circa-1949 house designed by celebrated late architect Philip Johnson, best-known for designing the Glass House in New Canaan, Connecticut. “Jeremy shared the link with a few of us in a group chat, and although the Zillow photos made it hard to believe that this was a Philip Johnson, we were still keen to go see it,” recalls Jiminie, founder and creative d

Mod Minimalist Meets Wild Maximalist in This West Village Apartment

Interior designer Kayla Billings Gardner and her husband, financial technology entrepreneur Clayton Gardner, are opposites in every way. She has a creative bent, he’s analytical. She’s a wild maximalist, he leans modern. She’s into color, he’s not. And yet, in the seven years they’ve shared a home together, they’ve somehow figured out a balance. “In our past homes, we shared every space—in one case, with two other roommates. This was our first opportunity to have designated spaces true to our in

In This Philadelphia Home, the Bathrooms are the Shining Stars

For Philadelphia natives Mark and Courtney Owens, the pandemic had a silver lining—or two. For one, they became parents. Then, they moved back to Pennsylvania after a decade of living out of state. “We’d spent the last 10 years living across Seattle, New York City, and Chicago, but now felt a calling to be closer to our families,” says Courtney, an HR leader at Google. She and Mark began searching for homes, ultimately landing on a 1920s Colonial Revival home in Penn Valley. “The previous owner had lived there for over 50 years, so the style was definitely dated,” shares Mark, a management consulting professional at Grant Thorton. It wasn’t just the style that the couple disfavored. There was something about the place that just felt heavy (think flashy doses of color, circus stripes in the bathrooms, and mismatched patterns)—a feeling they knew they could shake only with a redesign. An online search led them to Brittany Hakimfar of Philadelphia-based Far Studio, whom they enlisted soon after.

In This Songwriter’s Midcentury Laurel Canyon Home, No Two Rooms Are Alike

The first time they met, interior designer Victoria Holly had an unusual ask for her client, 30-something songwriter Michael Matosic. “He had a very large, very modern navy sectional scheduled for delivery. Within 10 minutes of meeting him, I said, ‘Please don’t kill me, but you have to cancel that order.’ And he did,” says Victoria. Luckily, the request didn’t throw Michael, who was happy to have her lend a helping hand in figuring out a style for his midcentury Laurel Canyon home. “Funnily eno

A 100-Year-Old Long Island Home Got a Bright Kitchen Glow-Up

The cost of day care must be less than or equal to the monthly rent, according to the the fail-safe formula most parents swear by—and Genevieve and Amin Tehrani were no exception. But when the Manhattan-based couple had their second child a few years ago, they found that formula fast failing. They took it as a sign to move, and the suburbs seemed like the next best alternative. “We fell in love with this house pretty quickly,” says Amin of their current home in Rockville Centre, Long Island. “It

This 900-Square-Foot Brooklyn Apartment Is a Tapestry of Travel Memories

Per the trio’s specifications, all the ornate doors, trims, moldings, walls, and ceilings were whited out, eliminating any trace of the color brown, not counting the original parquet floors. “The effect is like a wedding cake,” Jackie muses. When it came to deciding what went where, mother and daughter arrived at an unspoken understanding. “My mom and I are both bossy people, but we always figure out a collaboration. She knows exactly where things should go,” laughs Miro. “In my former apartment

This Colorful Sydney Kitchen Channels a Beachside Holiday

Halfway into the pandemic Jinan Budge and her husband were sure they needed to upgrade to a bigger place. “We were both working from home, our kids were doing virtual school, and everybody was under house arrest,” recalls the Sydney-based research technology professional. Still wishing to live in Sydney’s Eastern Suburbs without really having the budget for it, the couple and their brood of four—including teenage daughter Mia, 11-year-old son Leo, puppy Muffin, and ginger cat Popcorn—set out to

This Floating Home in the Santa Barbara Harbor Was Entirely Rebuilt by a Father and Son

The next best thing to being in the water is being on it. At least that’s the philosophy that Jeff Wapner lives by. These days, the Santa Barbara native lives in a 1,400-square-foot floating home he lovingly rebuilt from the water up with his father, Mike, a retired engineer. “I was born in Santa Barbara but left after high school to study in Colorado. From there, I lived in Australia, New Zealand, Oregon, Washington, New York City, and eventually Los Angeles, before making the decision to move back,” Jeff says. As an avid sailor and surfer, the move was prompted by a desire to live close to the water and to his parents.

A Kitchen and Bath Update Gave This Chicago Home a Colorful Spin

When Kristen and Conor Quinn first met with Carly Moeller of interior design studio Unpatterned, they were aligned about most things—but the bathroom aesthetic wasn’t one of them. “I told Carly I was hoping for something colorful, warm, and clean. Conor, I remember, said something about wanting the bathrooms to feel industrial and cold and minimal, and he was being very serious. I remember wanting to kick him under the table,” recalls Kristen, who serves as the chief of staff at Teach For Americ

A Couple’s Old Furniture Collection Got a Cool Spin in Their New San Francisco Home

Even before they’d signed the deed or put down a deposit, Caitlin O’Neill and Sean Weinstock knew who they’d bring in for the interior design of their new home in San Francisco’s Glen Park neighborhood: Christina Higham of Sun Soul Style Interiors. It didn’t matter that Christina was based in Kauai, or that they’d just finished renovating their previous home. By two years into their marriage, they knew they needed a bigger place. And as for Christina taking the lead from 2,500 miles away, the co

This Midcentury Oakland Home Is Inspired by Hollywood Regency and Travel Memories

When they’re not busy traveling to faraway locales, Shasta and Jen Scobie can almost always be found at the nearest (or furthest) thrift store, foraging for discarded studio pottery and other curious novelties. “I didn’t start traveling until my late 20s, but once I did, I made it a priority and collected many treasures over the years,” says Shasta, a strategic program manager for a tech company. And yet, the couple’s collection had little room to shine. “We had just three pieces of furniture: a

This 645-Square-Foot Rome Apartment Is a Maximalist’s Dream

Italian interior architect Mirta Ottaviani and her partner, construction entrepreneur Augusto Carchella, hadn’t always expected to rent an apartment, much less one in Rome’s Parioli district. “The plan was always to buy a place, but we needed somewhere to stay while we searched for our dream home,” says Mirta, who worked at several interior design studios in Italy and France before setting up her own firm in Rome in 2021. Plan B was leasing an apartment in Piazza Venezia, Rome’s historical city

This Tropical Hawaii Bathroom Brings the Jungle Indoors

Oahu is known for many things: endless coastlines, lush rainforests, and magical nature trails that seemingly extend to infinity. For one couple from the Bay Area, capturing some of this magic in their new apartment in Waikiki was key to making it feel like home. And yet, the existing shell—a standard ’90s selection with yellow walls and maple floors and cabinets—was far from entrancing. “Everything felt old and dated. It just didn’t match their vibe,” recalls Oahu-based interior designer Shaoli

Sunshine and Scallops Inspire Whimsy in This Massachusetts Kitchen

As the daughter of a general contractor, Loi Sessions Goulet grew up around still-under-construction buildings, and could never shake the feeling that she’d one day move into a home with project potential herself. So it felt like fate when she and her husband, Jon—along with their then toddler—chanced upon a 1930s build in Wellesley, Massachusetts, some years ago. “We were mesmerized by its front porch. We knew the house needed work, but with a small kid, it made sense to move in now and renovat

This Austin Home for a Family of Six Brims With Colorful Curiosities

When they aren’t at work, Erin Patterson and her partner, Trevor, can usually be found in the kitchen, with their blended brood of four roller-skating in circles around them. “With four curious kiddos and two parents who love to cook, it can get wild! We joke about hanging a velvet rope around the island and range to keep them out,” laughs Erin, a licensed master social worker with a specialization in child adoption. The open-door policy isn’t limited to family or the kitchen alone. Most weekend

A Faded Portland Kitchen Gets a Sanctuary-Like Update

For Ana Quiñones and Eric Karl, a pandemic spent cooped up at home meant many unwelcome discoveries: fading walls, creaky cabinets, dysfunctional storage—among other things. It was hardly surprising. After all, they’d lived in their condo for over a decade and, evidently, time had caught up with the place. “The kitchen, in particular, needed some extra attention,” wrote the couple (he’s an engineering manager, she’s a gerontologist and associate professor at Oregon Health and Science University)

A Drab Tulsa Basement Got a Double Role as a Half-Bedroom, Half-Office

Most mornings, Katie Carpenter and her husband, Justin, take turns calling dibs on their basement office. “It’s always a race for who gets there first,” laughs Katie, cofounder of Strat House, a boutique public relations firm catering to interior designers in Oklahoma. As an extension of the primary bedroom, the office is ideal for manifesting some early morning inspiration or some late evening energy. Or for hunkering down for some quiet, away from the background score that presides over the rest of the house (the couple shares two spirited little girls).

This Bright and Bohemian Bronx Apartment Was Born from a Paint Job Gone Wrong

Takeesha White and Alex Marcelo had no intention of hiring an interior designer—not until a bad paint job left their walls looking like the pale inside of a banana peel. Knowing that they needed a do-over—and fast—they turned to the only person whom they knew they could trust to bring the place back to life: Alex’s sister, interior designer Abigail Marcelo Horace.

“I had warned them that the original paint colors wouldn’t do much to change the interior, but they didn’t listen at the time. In th

This Florida Home With a Striking Roofline Got a Palm Springs–Inspired Makeover

When Jonathan Mills was hunting for properties in Gainesville, Florida, a few years ago, there came a point when he was certain he’d found the one. It was a recently restored midcentury-modern lake house with a charm of its own. He contacted the realtor, put a price on it, and waited…only to ultimately be outbid by somebody else. The only silver lining was that somewhere along the way, he found himself a designer: Chelsey Cox, of Chinotto House, who had masterminded said restoration. That meant

This 680-Square-Foot Brooklyn Heights Apartment Has the Best Window Seat

Working in real estate has its perks: flexible workdays, career mobility, high income potential. Or as in the case of Carrie McCue, the opportunity to clinch a hot property before anyone else. “Well, I wouldn’t exactly call it hot,” the Massachusetts native says. “It was on the market for more than a year.” When she stumbled upon the Brooklyn Heights prewar co-op online, the blurry cell phone photos did nothing to deter her. Having seen thousands of homes in the city, she had trained her eye to know when a space has “good bones.” And the bones in this one, she deemed, were particularly good.
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