The sprawling and eclectic four-bedroom condo was fearlessly reimagined in big ways.
In just two years, interior designer Carolyn Pressly, along with her two kids and husband, have moved five times. With five moves worth of picking up and putting down, most homeowners would surrender to a move-in-ready, fuss-free space to settle into. But that’s not Carolyn’s style. The acclaimed designer was browsing through the pages of Street Easy when she discovered a listing in one of her favorite buildings–a condo on a cherry-tree lined street in Tribeca’s historic district. She made an offer that same day. The offer was accepted, and from that point forward she knew her work was cut out for her.
“The home was very dark and cavernous, the layout was weird and there was no overhead lighting. It felt oddly large but had no flow,” she says.
Only a short time after closing the deal, the renovations began. Carolyn stripped down every surface of the home, adding three custom doorways, creating four separate wings, and completely reimagining the architecture, for better flow and light.
“Each wing has its own aesthetic, with everything from traditional European influences to nomadic materials, all interpreted through a bold, clean-lined use of space. The modern twist on the old-world is the uniting factor in my home,” she explains. A global nomad and self-proclaimed wanderluster, Carolyn’s home is a distillation of fun, filled with refined and eclectic touches that balance old and new. The four bedroom condo is, as Carolyn puts it, her “final landing pad.”
We got a chance to chat with the designer about her favorite spaces, and the process of crafting the perfect home.
THE LIVING ROOM
“The living room is definitely my favorite room. It has that old world feeling with the plaster and blackened walls and vintage windows. There’s an interesting story behind the pair of curved, Donghia-inspired sofas, which almost did not come to pass in my home. They were plagued at multiple stages in the production (ex. delivery failure), when I had an idea. I commissioned New York City textile artist Rhiannon Platt to embroider ‘Existential sofa’ and ‘Radical knitter’ in hand-stitches across the back of each sofa, as a sort of creative expression. The living room is witty and handcrafted, something that really draws people in.”
“After working in many different offices throughout my career, I love having this home office. It allows me to be a working professional and a mom simultaneously; it’s a peaceful environment that stimulates both creativity and productivity. Growing up, I loved collaging. In honor of that love, I built a five-foot tall inspiration board into the wall, which is one of my favorite parts of the room. The teal fretwork was inspired by metal fretwork on armoires in France, and the swing down lights were inspired by reading nooks in London, both of which are places I love to travel to, and give me a sense of peace in the space.”
The office is one of the four wings in the home, and incorporates a modern tromp l’oeil grid pattern cork floor, inspired by the flooring of the Plaza’s Oak Room and the Morgan Library.
The office desktop features a hand-tooled leather inset panel by one of the last Italian-trained leather artisans remaining in New York City, Falotico Studios.