THE DARK SIDE

Lav­ishly lay­ered, this small, mostly black condo has as many glam­our-filled mo­ments as a home twice its size.

Style at Home - - Contents - TEXT IRIS BENAROIA PHOTOGRAPHY ALEX LUKEY STYLING SCOTT YOUNG

Lav­ishly lay­ered, a mostly black condo has as many glam­our- filled mo­ments as a home twice its size

From the cof­fered ceil­ing to the kitchen sink, Jamie Alexan­der’s bold condo is awash in black – now that’s chutz­pah. The in­te­rior de­signer, who also ha­bit­u­ally dons Johnny Cash’s pre­ferred hue, has good rea­son to em­brace the dark side. “Black, like white, works with ev­ery­thing,” says Jamie, half of Peloso Alexan­der In­te­ri­ors, which he runs along­side Glen Peloso. The de­sign­ers had pre­vi­ously beau­ti­fied 10 of the units in Jamie’s eight-storey build­ing in the city’s his­toric St. Lawrence Mar­ket neigh­bour­hood, and Jamie was fi­nally ready to fi­nesse his own.

Even be­fore the trans­for­ma­tion of the space he shares with his hus­band, stylist and hair stylist Joshua Breau, was un­der­way, Jamie’s friends were mak­ing pre­dic­tions: “You’re go­ing to do a black condo, aren’t you?” In­deed, he did. The inky en­ve­lope is a sul­try back­drop for the dy­namic el­e­ments, from the eye-catch­ing wall treat­ments to the strik­ing gold ac­cents, that elevate the 525-square-foot abode.

The ren­o­va­tion took a year be­cause “we wanted to per­fectly tai­lor it to our tastes,” says Jamie, who opted for slen­der ap­pli­ances through­out the kitchen. “When you’re only two peo­ple in a small space across from St. Lawrence Mar­ket – a.k.a. foodie cen­tral – who needs a huge fridge?”

In the bath­room, Jamie nixed the idea of in­clud­ing a soaker tub for sim­i­lar spac­ing rea­sons: “We’re not the bath types,” he says, not­ing that the room serves as a gen­teel homage to “the throw­back New York City loo.” Though small, it packs a punch, at once clas­sic (thanks to the pedestal sink, Shaker-style cab­i­netry and sub­way tile wall) and charis­matic (check out the cloud wall­pa­per, strik­ing geo­met­ric floor tile and prom­i­nent shower hard­ware).

Sure, the bath­room’s a stun­ner, but when you ask Jamie to name his favourite room in the condo, it’s the bed­room. “I was flip­ping through a cat­a­logue and I saw this over­sized palm leaf-printed fab­ric,” says Jamie. “I just had to have it for my du­vet cover. Joshua thought I was a lu­natic.” After all, the de­signer had al­ready cho­sen faux leather-quilted indigo wall­pa­per, gold drap­ery and an indigo ceil­ing – the sym­phony of colours could have clashed or over­whelmed the space. In­stead, the union of hues re­sults in a warm and lux­u­ri­ous co­coon. “Green and blue is a mag­netic com­bi­na­tion,” says Jamie. Might this mark a de­par­ture from his de­vo­tion to black? With this au­da­cious de­signer, any­thing’s pos­si­ble.

For the con­sum­mate en­ter­tainer, a bar cart is es­sen­tial, even in a small condo. This one eas­ily rolls in and out of ser­vice as needed. DE­SIGN, Peloso Alexan­der In­te­ri­ors, pelosoalexan­der.com; Pa­per White OC-55 WALL PAINT, Jet Black 2120-10 AC­CENT PAINT, Ben­jamin Moore; cus­tom SOFA, COF­FEE TABLE, ARMCHAIRS, SIDE TABLE, Peloso Alexan­der In­te­ri­ors; BLINDS, Bud­get Blinds; BAR CART, Four Hands; FLOORING, Torlys.

Hav­ing worked in his­toric ho­tels across Canada, in­te­rior de­signer and home­owner Jamie Alexan­der show­cased his love of old ar­chi­tec­ture in his condo through the cof­fered ceil­ing, crown mould­ing and a wall-to-wall built-in shelf. The cus­tom gold-hued sofa tucks per­fectly un­der­neath the win­dow. Along the Flood­line ART­WORK by Chris Ma­soure, Stu­dio Mazur; TABLE LAMP, Luce Lu­men; STOOL, VASES, Peloso Alexan­der In­te­ri­ors.

RIGHT So­phis­ti­cated sconces, a stately mir­ror and sub­way wall tiles with con­trast­ing grout keep the play­ful wall­pa­per from look­ing too ethe­real. “The mir­ror is a cus­tom beauty,” Jamie says, adding that it also serves as a medicine cabi­net. “We were able to steal from the wall cav­ity be­hind it for stor­age.” WALL­PA­PER, Lee Jofa; SINK, FAUCET, SHOWER FIX­TURES, TOI­LET, DXV; FLOOR TILES, WALL TILES, Olympia Tile + Stone; cus­tom MIR­ROR, SCONES, Peloso Alexan­der In­te­ri­ors.

ABOVE Minu­tiae mat­ters when you’re cre­at­ing a lit­tle oa­sis, as Jamie knows from dec­o­rat­ing the lux­u­ri­ous loo. “A beau­ti­ful fea­ture is the porce­lain base­boards,” he says. Though the rim on the shapely pedestal sink of­fers no stor­age, the sleek cus­tom linen closet of­fers plenty.

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