Month: August 2012


“You must not lose faith in humanity. Humanity is an ocean; if a few
drops of the ocean are dirty, the ocean does not become dirty
.”  Mahatma Gandhi


Have a good weekend!

Our home is a result of all I believe in and stand for.  Uniqueness, individuality and comfort.  A mind of ones own.  It’s a home that reflects our lifestyle as much as possible.  It’s rooted in the classics but in a relaxed and young sophisticated way with modern and transitional elements.  I strive to be creative and unique so this home does not look like any other home because then it wouldn’t be our own.  I like to incorporate modern pieces and/or modernized classic ones because that’s what I consider chic.  A home with some modern and/or relaxed mood.  I actualized the classic fauteuil arm chairs by upholstering them in red leather and embellished with brass nail heads.  I did the same with the black stool.  I fell in love with the coffee table thanks to its sculptural lines, another design element I constantly praise about in this blog.  It weights like a forced marriage because its legs are solid steel. Every time I look at it, good memories come up to my mind remembering how my father-in-law and I carried it inside the house.  I’m just glad no one called the police on us suspecting we were carrying a dead body.  I bought the lamps at Gilt Home, excellent delivery time by the way, I added a trim of velvet to the shades to enhance them further.  The abstract painting is a bartered piece, really! The sofa is Paul McCobb with a slip cover and the oushak rug is from ABC.  The painting above the sofa is an Agam, bought at The Antique Garage.

The fireplace behind the watercolor painting is the TV enclosed in the wall.  The bookcase is from ABC, the drop shaped stools are form Brookstone.  The brass swing arm sconces are from Shades of Light.

Adore, adore that black cocktail table.  It was purchased at ebay but you can find it here.

This precious space was occupied by that closet with wash and drier.  The inlaid dresser is from Lerebours Antiques, the Greek key base echoes the Greek key crown molding on the door and it’s a find from Home Goods.

I’m not afraid of mixing patterns and using what I love and believe in.  A home is an extension of our lives and experiences.

The art deco sideboard was left from my inventory when I used to sell vintage and antiques.  I love to display my collection of pottery on top.  It takes no space and it’s also decorative.  The French chandelier was purchased online.  The gorgeous dining table with brass details is also from Lerebours Antiques.

If anyone wants to hire me as a food stylist I’m available, consultation services can be provided online though or you have to pay for my plane ticket. 😛  The black wine glasses were found at The Antique Garage, the horn cup holding the coffee beans is from TJ Max, candelabras and bowls are from ABC Carpet and the cheese tray is from West Elm.  Mixing high and low is what I like.  🙂

Our bedroom is not huge so we kept the storage situation completely relegated to the closets.  No dressers out of the closets.  The wallpaper is from Brunschwig and Fils.  I love how in all this time I’ve never gotten tired of it and I think it’s because the patterns are faded so I always see something different in it.  The headboard and lamps were found at a vintage store; the photographs of Ephesus were taken by me during our trip to Turkey; the Moroccan wedding blanket from West Elm is simply thrown on top of a table that I use as a bench.  The bedding is Pratesi bought on sale. The fabric on the headboard is Kells Dot by Quadrille.

It’s been a real pleasure to wake up everyday and enjoy the beautiful view of NYC.  It makes a huge difference in our moods.  What you look at does make a difference.

My nightstand is from Lerebours Antiques and is usually not this nicely organized.  I keep a bunch of magazines, books, journal and pencils underneath it at hand.  I finally made a commitment of starting to write in my journal every night.  More for remembering my daily life than for any secret feeling.  With all the social media craziness of modern lives now I’m afraid people will not remember their lives in the future and by writing every night what I’ve done in the day and of course any thought or feeling helps me relive the moment and be more present.  I have a lithograph of a woman by Matisse on my side of the bed and on his side Evren has a Dali lithograph of an old man.

We were lucky to get this house that in a way have a lot of storage. 
This closet, below right, is all mine.  Slowly I squeezed out my hubby
into one of the others we have in the hallway.  A post about customizing closet is coming soon. :b

This is where I get prettier every time I’m going out.  🙂

Believe it or not I usually have the top of my vanity almost like it looks here.  As I’ve said before I like to see what I use regularly.  Enjoy!

All photographs by Robert Levi.

In the back you can see the powder room and the insane and unnecessary
closet in the middle of everything not only taking precious space but
also displaying the washer and drier for everyone who came in and out of
the bathroom.  Nuts, right?

This is how our home was before we started remodeling it.  Light, yellowish floors, two small closets on either side of the living room blocking the nice view, a less than attractive fireplace, a closed-in kitchen and completely bland bathrooms.  Our labor of love was done in two separate times, kitchen, floors, closets were removed and painted before we moved in and the remodeling of the bathrooms were done two years after while living in it.  Tomorrow I’ll show you the after pictures!

 I covered this wall above with mirrors and framed it with two architectural columns.

This closet across from the other one made a bit more sense since it was for coats but it didn’t make complete sense for me either so below you can see it fully gutted out.  Now the entire entrance is open and I can see the main door from the stairs.

The kitchen was a closed in room.  We took down the top half wall, added more lower cabinets and moved the fridge to another wall.  All the way in the back you can see the unattractive fireplace which was also spruced up.

In order to use a bigger TV and to utilize the space more effectively, we opened up the space more and added another electric outlet for additional electronic equipment.

We added a shelf (not in the picture yet) to put the TV on top and cable box, router underneath.

all images by Julie Yenicag for Belle Vivir