Eye Swoon

October 1, 2013

Monc Main

My eye is always seeking out polarizing elements, in just about everything I do.  When designing a space, I pride myself on combining elevated and refined stand out pieces, with rustic undone materials like rough rope or knotty wood. For me it’s all about achieving the ying and yang – mixing high and low – giving some grit and glam. But it’s also about the hunt for those elements, the unexpected discoveries and finally, the transformation.

I might have met my match in Natasha Esch, the brilliant owner and creator of Monc XIII in Sag Harbor, NY. Natasha has curated a design store that is truly a handpicked plethora of dreamy European antiques, some customized with timeless fabrics, others respectfully kept intact to show off their original patina. But you can also find pure glam at Monc – vintage mixed-metal light fixtures dangle above your head – and scattered perfectly throughout the space are stunning home accessories, all perfect tabletop treats! For me though, it’s the environment Natasha has created to house all these gems that makes Monc XIII a standout, shopping destination.  The entire structure, is without a doubt, swoon worthy!

From the moment you enter you can’t help but be awed and surprised by what you see in the two-story space. Everything is in perfect contrast! Elevated home furnishings sit upon reclaimed floors. The casement black-framed windows are filled with artisanal glass. And alongside rough-hewn wooden beams a genius spiral staircase draws your eye up. A mix of chunk 5” slabs of knotty oak crafted held together by blackened steel, the staircase has an industrial sexiness that anchors the entire space. It’s the combination of the black steel and pale wood, a polarized union inspired by Jean Prouvé, that really makes me swoon.

Every square inch of Natasha’s space is meticulously designed with love, craft and killer design instincts. When I see an Italian chandelier from the 1960’s hung on a rope pulley system, and fastened with a brass boat cleat, I can’t help but chuckle. There’s a comfort in knowing someone else out there can’t resist uniting the elevated with the ho-hum! Natasha is certainly making eyes swoon throughout the Hamptons, creating visual tension at Monc XIII, that’s like pure heaven. Proof again, that the proverbial saying ‘opposites attract’ is definitely accurate.

Photography by Athena Calderone

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