”² bedroom, before: Between the stark white bedding, bone walls and wood laminate nightstands, my bedside area felt kind of hospital-ish. I did, however, kind of love the brown upholstered headboard. So, just like the living room sofa, I decided to work with it.
”² bedroom, after: Being lured into a sleeping space by beige drywall does not a happy designer make. Therefore, I opted for something sexy, graphic and metallic. What says all three better than Kelly Hoppen? I found her Hicks wallpaper on the Graham & Brown website and“KAZAM! “it showed up about three days later. Using spray mount and an Exacto knife, Susan and I covered several sheets of �?¼-inch-thick foam core with it, then butted each sheet up where the repeat met. This created the look of a fully wallpapered wall when, in fact, it was simply a few sheets of foam core placed side-by-side and held in place with double-sided tape. The Brooklyn Flea was again my source for fun, vintage objects while the trusted Thom Filicia fabrics again made their way into my bedroom in the form of throw pillows.
”² office, before: In its existing state, the study area left a lot to be desired. Although its desk lamp wasn“t atrocious by any means, the area called for something a little more industrial.
”² office, after: A quick run to CB2 and The Brooklyn Flea fixed up the study area situation. The ochre Carpenter lamp picked up on the same tone in the Pablo table to add a much-needed jolt of color. Vintage art supplies, books, a camera and art instantly added a more personal touch to the laptop-centric space.
”³ kitchen, before: As far as New York kitchens are concerned, I pretty much won the Spacious Kitchen Lottery. Overall, the design of the apartment“s kitchen was top-notch modern; however, its plethora of cold, stark materials really needed some warming up.
”³ kitchen, after: To warm up the floor, literally and decoratively, I carried the FLOR into the kitchen. Since the glass-and-chrome table was kind of harsh, I softened it up with a custom table skirt made from Iman“s Alhambra Amour Luna picked up at Calico Corners. Ever try to find a seamstress to do a rush order in New York City? Well, let me tell you something: It“s insanely easy. There are tailors everywhere and they“re totally used to churning out stuff in a day or two.
”² living room, before: from a practicality standpoint, neutral is the way to go with corporate housing so I totally get sticking with bone or cream for temporary spaces with high turnover rates. However, drowning tenants in a sea of medium beige, neutral beige and light beige (walls, floor, artwork) paired with rust (area rug) and off-white beige (lampshade) is an entirely different story, one I prefer to skip altogether. The stories I did enjoy from the get-go: The nubby fabric and clean lines of the existing sectional sofa, and the sleek brown leather desk chair. So much so that I worked with them for the new look; everything looks good with brown.
”² living room, after: Thanks to Schumacher“s Baluster wallpaper, CB2“s Pablo tables and pillows made from Thom Filicia fabrics bought at Calico Corners, my beige-fest of a living room became more of a brown, blue and orange fiesta. To make more of a statement with the wall, Susan and I cut a 4×8-foot sheet of �?¼-inch black foam core (local New York art store chain Dick Blick delivered it for a small fee) to size with an Exacto knife, covered the surface of the foam core with spray adhesive, fit the wallpaper to it, cut away the excess, then attached it to the wall with double-sided tape. After rolling up the existing rug and banishing it to the closet, the floors were given a bold new look with “Mag-Neat-O” carpet tiles from FLOR. Once the non-living stuff was tackled, Susan introduced me to the Garden District, where we grabbed tons of gorgeous greenery to add some luck-colored life throughout the apartment.
When I accepted a producer position in New York for the sixth season of HGTV Design Star, even though it was only for a few months, I was determined to put a designer spin on my own 475-square-foot chunk of corporate housing. Sure, moving to Manhattan and producing a high-profile, prime-time hit reality-competition series is stressful; however, transient can be much harder, especially in spaces where paint and permanent installations are prohibited. Since I pride myself on pushing the envelope when it comes to decorating, the idea of living somewhere with bone-colored walls, mass-produced corporate art and a homogenized excuse for an area rug just wasn’t going to cut it. Located just a hop, skip and a jump from the Empire State Building, here’s how I—along with New York design blogger friends Susan Brinson and Ashlina Kaposta—used the art of temporary design to take my Murray Hill apartment from beige and bland to playful and pattern-tastic.
Man of Design – Brian Patrick Flynn’s Favorite Things
Car: Vintage Jeep Grand Wagoneer with wood-paneled doors Artist: Jonathan Fenske Chair: Platner lounge chair with smoke boucle upholstery Restaurant: Victory Sandwich Bar Kitchen Gadget: Electric hand blender; the only relationship I have with my kitchen is the six minutes I spend in it to whip up protein shakes Coffee Table Book: Hue by Kelly Wearstler; I love how her interiors are like fine works of abstract art and the photography is incredible Comfort Food: Homemade biscuits and sausage gravy Wallpaper: It’s a tie between Illusion: Black from Graham & Brown and Hicks Hexagon in pink-and-gray from Cole and Son Paint Colors: Queen’s Wreath 1426 by Benjamin Moore because it’s the perfect balance of gray and plum; I love using violets, browns and grays together Cocktail: Absolut Mandarin and Sprite; I’m not much of a drinker so it’s likely you’ll find me holding the same one I ordered at 8:30 p.m. only half empty at 11 p.m. Movie: Don’t Tell Mom the Babysitter’s Dead Charity: ASPCA; I have two rescue dogs and can’t imagine life without them Way to Entertain: Outdoors, buffet-style … at someone else’s house TV Show: Raising Hope Vacation Spot: The Four Corners