Good Design Can Trick The Eye

Photography by Sarah Elliott

Good Design Can Trick The Eye

The rental apartment in my Brooklyn townhouse was a super fun space to design particularly since I was challenged with a limited budget. I mean, let’s be honest I needed to save those coins for the upper floors! Nothing like constraints to get the creative juices flowing. I approached the design as I would for a client knowing this was a space I would not live in. That said, itching in the back of my mind was a master plan – one day, perhaps, just maybe, I could turn this into an EyeSwoon test kitchen for workshops. That def amped up my desire to create a swoony space. I had a few goals in mind – working with a condenced floor plan, I wanted to maximize the space with an open-plan kitchen.  This would allow natural light into the kitchen and make the overall space feel grander. Sticking to a controlled palette of high contrast black and white with no upper cabinets was another trick to make the space feel larger. Dark and moody on the bottom and light and bright up top.  This was designed to engage the eye upward and give the feeling of a loftier ceiling height.

Good Design Can Trick The Eye

The warmth of pale oak shelving gave the space a bit of texture.  Another subtle but impactful textural moment was in the ceramic light fixtures.  I cannot begin to tell you how many people have asked me where these are from — well, they are Rejuvination and they are soooooo major.  Totally obsessed with the wavy banded pattern in these crafted and customizable white ceramic pendants. The touch of brass adds a hint of elegance without taking it to the glam terittory. 

The bell-like form of the pendants and the ribbed texture really engage the eye even set against a white backdrop.  No one can ever convince me that white is too bland — on the contrary I find it to be the best neutral on earth. These pendants were a collaboration with Pigeon Toe, owned by ceramicist and artist Lisa Jones. The series of  ceramic lamps, available in multiple textures and colors, is glazed by hand adding to their authenticity.

Good Design Can Trick The Eye
Good Design Can Trick The Eye

Here in the bathroom I continued with my statement trifecta of white, black, and natural wood. And again I am using classic elements like subway tile with juxtaposed black grout to add texture. Adding to a timeless modernity is a wall mounted double globe sconce by Rejuvination. The classic black porcelain canopy and black enamel metal finish express an understated elegance.

Good Design Can Trick The Eye

Space consciousness was considered through every design decision in this apartment. With only one bathroom in the two bedroom apartment I knew I needed ample storage so on the hunt I went for a vanity and medicine cabinet that offered deep storage and that can be wall mounted.  The discovery of this black framed cabinet fit the criteria and even had an interior outlet! BOOM! 


Share this Swoon   –  

Necessary Objects

These items may contain affiliate links, which means I receive a small commission if you make a purchase using this link.


Subscribe to our newsletter

Get exclusive access to recipes, promotions, videos, and original content.
We'll never share your information.