COOL col­lab­o­ra­tion

A per­fect mix of beau­ti­ful vin­tage items and ex­quis­ite con­tem­po­rary style has turned Gabriel and Jeremy’s New York apart­ment into an ul­tra-re­lax­ing haven

Living Etc - - HOMES / ETC -

We love liv­ing some­where that tells a bit of a story – a place that might make you scratch your head a lit­tle,’ says Gabriel Hen­di­far of the light­filled brown­stone apart­ment that he shares with part­ner Jeremy An­der­son. ‘Ev­ery­thing here has been col­lected over time, so there’s no over­ar­ch­ing style. In­stead our home’s about el­e­ments that may not im­me­di­ately make sense to­gether,’ he adds.

It took al­most two years for them to get the in­te­rior to where it is now and the in­ter­est­ing lay­ers and jux­ta­po­si­tions are a re­sult of just let­ting it evolve, they say. In 2012, they founded the New York-based de­sign studio Ap­pa­ra­tus, spe­cial­is­ing in beau­ti­ful light­ing, fur­ni­ture and ob­jets d’art. As well as be­ing packed with un­usual vin­tage trea­sures, the gen­er­ously pro­por­tioned rooms of the Brook­lyn apart­ment have now be­come a place to ex­per­i­ment with their own sculp­tural light­ing de­signs and the re­sult is a per­fectly ex­e­cuted les­son in how to style a rental prop­erty.

Gabriel was work­ing in wom­enswear and Jeremy in PR when they met in Los Angeles in 2010. Hav­ing moved in to­gether on the West Coast, the pair re­lo­cated to New York a year later be­cause of Jeremy’s work. ‘We’d seen this place four or five months be­fore, in the New York Times real-es­tate pages and as­sumed it had gone,’ says Gabriel. Af­ter an on­line list­ing ap­peared and then mys­te­ri­ously van­ished, they con­vinced their es­tate agent to call ev­ery build­ing owner on the block un­til he tracked it down. ‘It was more than we could afford at the time, but we had to have it,’ ad­mits Gabriel.

Built in 1892, the end-of-block apart­ment is a rare find, with soar­ing ceil­ings, vast windows and a wealth of orig­i­nal plas­ter­work. ‘It’s a fan­tas­tic shell, but as it’s a rental, we didn’t want to spend a lot of money re­design­ing it, so much of what we did is about sur­faces: mak­ing some­thing in­ter­est­ing with wall­pa­per and paint,’ Gabriel says. Paint shades of vary­ing depths cre­ate con­trast through­out the apart­ment, with the big, bright liv­ing area dec­o­rated in a neu­tral pal­ette and the bed­rooms in darker tones. ‘It’s about stages – about how it feels to be stand­ing in one room, and what makes you want to walk to the space be­yond,’ ex­plains Gabriel.

What re­ally gives the home its unique style, how­ever, is the col­lec­tion of fur­ni­ture and ob­jects the duo have cu­rated. From mid-cen­tury seat­ing and vin­tage tex­tiles to cu­rios such as a brass ram’s head and an an­tique tur­tle shell, the apart­ment is a mini mu­seum of orig­i­nal pieces. ‘We are re­ally big on vin­tage,’ says Gabriel. ‘Jeremy is great at scour­ing the in­ter­net and we find a lot of bits and bobs up­state in a town called Hud­son. The prim­i­tive fig­ures in the din­ing room are from The Hud­son Mer­can­tile – they’re hand-carved liquor cab­i­nets sal­vaged from a hunt­ing lodge in Maine. Some­thing humorous like that can just take the edge off a for­mal room.’ The an­tique pieces are lay­ered up with items found on their trav­els, such as the sump­tu­ous Moroc­can wool rug in the liv­ing room. ‘We picked it up in Marrakech a few years ago, and it in­stantly changed the feel­ing of that space,’ says Gabriel. ‘Now al­most no­body sits on the couch – we all end up on the rug around the mar­ble cube cof­fee ta­bles with a stack of cush­ions.’

The cou­ple are also ren­o­vat­ing a farm­house in up­state Rhinebeck, where they spend week­ends, but the apart­ment re­mains im­por­tant to them both. ‘This is where we come to de­com­press, to read, lis­ten to mu­sic and be in­spired,’ says Gabriel. ‘It’s a serene en­vi­ron­ment, which is what makes it all the more spe­cial.’ See more of Gabriel and Jeremy’s work at ap­pa­ra­tusstu­

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