The moment we laid eyes on this bright NYC apartment, we were hooked. The floor-to-ceiling windows are what Pinterest dreams are made of, and we love the unexpected combination of bright artwork and sophisticated textiles. Yelena and Julien, the young couple who call the space home, know it wasn’t always this picture-perfect. At first, they struggled to find the perfect layout for their lifestyle and yearned to include more art – a task that proved difficult with so little wall space. They wanted to feel proud of their home and make it a place where they felt comfortable (and excited!) to host guests. Yelena reached out to Homepolish – one of our favorite design resources – and was quickly connected with Tali Roth. Tali, a Homepolish designer who began her career in fashion, got right to work transforming the space into the stylish sanctuary we see today. (And on an inspirational note, you should totally follow Tali on Instagram here.) Tali credits the couple’s great foundation (a gorgeous sofa, an eye-catching coffee table, and a collection of unique chairs), but her design expertise made all the difference. Today, we’re chatting with Tali about her creative process… and even got her to share a few tips you can use in your own home:

Tali, you have such a great sense of style! How did you get your start?
I started a fashion label in Australia at 21 and then after running it for a few years, I slowly transitioned into interiors. I studied whilst working and winding down my business, graduated and worked part time before moving to New York in October 2013 where I began at Homepolish.

Impressive! What can you tell us about this project?
This gorgeous 900 square ft one bedroom apartment is located in Chelsea. Yelena reached out to me in the middle of August 2014 and we had wrapped up by December.

Yelena reached out with the initial aim of figuring out the floor plan as there was not enough space for a dining table and the scale of their old sofa seemed rather awkward in the living room. There was also the issue of bringing enough personality and texture into the space considering it was mainly windows and little wall space for art. They were motivated and efficient and our styles worked really well together!

The end result certainly shows off a great partnership! What was the original inspiration?
The inspiration for the space came from the space itself and the pre-existing items that Julien and Yelena had. Everything was quite neutral and sophisticated with an inclination towards furniture and accessories with a luxe finish. Over the course of the project our original inspiration of neutral, bright, layered and luxe, stayed on track and we basically kept layering the space with accessories until it felt perfect.

Did you end up keeping any of their existing furniture?
The apartment was a beautiful canvas to begin with and I was lucky enough to have the Restoration Hardware sofa, the mirrored coffee table, the tufted blue bed and dining chairs in the space before I started.

Did you encounter any challenges along the way?
Our biggest challenge was that of the convertible coffee table/dining table. I felt as though one of those tables would have detracted from the balance of the space if we had had it in the center of the room. We decided to indeed purchase one and use it as a deep side table and style it beautifully to avoid it being an eyesore. We also used the old dining chairs as bench seats that could be used when the coffee table turned into a dining table.

We know you’d never choose favorites… but any features in the space you just love?
I love the little vignette of the silver cowhide butterfly chair from The Citizenry, against the mantel with the Slim Aarons “Hotel Du Cap-Eden-Roc” photograph styling with some simple silver and white vessels. It is the perfect combination.

We agree! One thing we’re really loving is the mismatched chairs. It seems like it’d be a big risk, but you pulled it off with ease.
I think the mismatched chairs look so good because they are in the same ‘theme’ as each other. Generally when I style and group items together that aren’t uniform, I like to ensure there is some consistency and uniformity whether it be in the color, shape or style so that it isn’t too overwhelming and it integrates into the space nicely.

Great tip! Do you have any other suggestions for apartment dwellers?

  1. Be realistic about the main purpose for your space. If you entertain 2/3 times a year then don’t sacrifice an amazing sofa for a dining table… think outside the square.
  2. Clever Accessories Matter. Artwork, sculpture, stunning table lamps, vases… they all add so much to a space. It is always easy to purchase a small floating shelf and style it with a pop of color, a hint of metallic and a stage of magazines to add some va-va-voom to a small bland space.
  3. Make storage pieces blend into the background and keep statement furniture, soft furnishings, and lighting as the hero pieces of the space. We can’t have too many pieces competing with each other in a small space. I often see clients with dark, chunky and heavy storage pieces and many of them. Keep the things you don’t want noticed the same color as the wall so they blend into the background. Keep your sofa, artwork and cushions as the feature pieces that everyone sees upon first glance.

Homepolish is revolutionizing the design industry. Whether it’s a total renovation or finding the perfect finishing touches, Homepolish designers work by the hour to create balanced spaces that just work. For more design inspiration, follow @Homepolish. To learn more or to schedule a design visit in your own home, click here.