Ana Claudia Schultz‘s clients aren’t full-time New Yorkers – in fact, the couple lives with their two teenage boys in Sweden. They wanted a pied-à-terre in New York City for when they come for work and pleasure. The building, located in the city’s Lower East Side, was a new-build and hadn’t even been entirely completed when Ana Claudia was brought onto the project.
“The finishes were nice but it looked like a white box,” she explained. “So we added more personality on a white canvas.” Having grown up in the ’80s and ’90s, the homeowners were music lovers and were inspired by the LES’ thriving graffiti and music scene. They wanted their home to reflect the creativity that was characteristic of their neighborhood while also bringing in pieces that were Swedish-designed. “Initially they requested contemporary, but a lower budget since furniture in Sweden is more reasonably priced,” Ana Claudia told us. “However, the more we spoke the more we realized it was about the quality and uniqueness of the products that they preferred so the budget increased.”
The 1,600 square-foot apartment required the right pieces to create the punk/hip-hop meets Scandinavia concept that they were going for. The living room, in particular, was a standout room in the home, where they wanted to create a feeling of grandness. “Our goal in the living room was to accentuate the amazing views,” she said with a smile. “So we opted for low profile seating that was both comfortable and unique. We found these thick tufted sofas from B&B Italia that were just edgy enough for a home with graffiti. Then we layered in bold Swedish rugs, punk art and light fixtures, plus more subtle and functional items like the coffee table and bureau from the Swedish brand No Early Birds.” In areas that didn’t have ceiling lights, Ana Claudia resorted to Juniper for edgy yet functional lighting pieces.
The main and kids’ bedrooms feature a few standout custom pieces that give a unique quality to their design. In the main bedroom, for example, Ana Claudia had a custom geometric headboard made that combines perfectly with the neutral area rug, as well as the marble side tables from Menu. In the teenage boys’ bedroom, two single beds from Bludot fit precisely in between both walls of the room. “We kept it neutral in this room, with one exception – two bold, basketball court graffiti artworks to inspire their love of sports and art,” she explained.
In the hallway, the designer commissioned a punk-inspired mural to be painted. “The mural was risky,” she admitted. “We love the muralist we work with so I knew it would come out great! But I worried it might look too kitsch instead of funky. It came out funky!”