Tuesday, January 7, 2014

A Posh Park Avenue Duplex, by Ashley Whittaker

Last week, I featured a beautiful, Palm Beach Chic Florida town house, decorated by one of my favorite designers, Ashley Whittaker... I am completely obsessed with her entire portfolio! And I'm absolutely in love with this elegant Park Avenue duplex, featured in the May 2013 issue of New York Spaces. Ashley was commissioned to help architect Tom Felton breathe new life into the 4,000-square-foot home, which was in need of a complete gut-renovation. 

The Park Avenue duplex was built in 1927 by James E.R. Carpenter - one of the most respected architects of prewar luxury apartments on New York's Upper East Side. Ashley and Felton made every effort to respect and authentically reproduce Carpenter's original vision, painstakingly restoring everything from the wood-burning fireplaces to the circular entry's gracefully curved staircase. Original plaster moldings were recreated, the white-oak floors were refinished, and outdated systems were brought up to code.

With the interior’s classical lines and dramatic proportions as a starting point, Ashley used her artist's eye for color, pattern, and detail to bring every room squarely into the 21st century.  “The bright, bold colors and playful patterns are a nod to the fact that a young family lives here,” she said. “Every home needs some blue-and-white ceramics and tiger stripes somewhere.”

Captions below via New York Spaces...
  Architect Tom Felton rebuilt a modifed version of the circular entry hall’s sweeping staircase, a distinctive feature of the circa-1927 J.E.R. Carpenter interior. The Charles Edwards pagoda-shaped lantern plays off the hand-painted Chinoiserie-inspired wallpaper from Gracie Studio. Sconces, Chameleon Antiques. Stair runner, Stark.
 An inlaid Greek key floor border, paneled wainscoting, and rebuilt arched doorways bring architectural elegance to a hallway designed for large-scale entertaining. Starburst mirror, John Rosselli & Associates. Custom faux-marble-top console, F.P. Victoria & Son. Ceramic garden stools, William Wayne. Soane lamps.
 A Peter Beard photograph (on the wall behind the green sofa) inspired the library’s rich palette of cognac, deep brown, gold, and green. The custom-colored David Hicks-pattern rug, printed-linen window shades, zebra stool, and patterned loveseat remain anchored in the calm environment created by the brown-lacquered cabinetry.

Ashley found the lion in a Millbrook, New York, antiques shop. “It was hard to give him up,” she admited. “But he was perfect for the room.”
 “Every interior needs tiger stripes somewhere,” said Ashley. Here, the pattern appears in the Stark velvet that covers the living-room ottomans. The slipper chairs are upholstered in an aqua Lee Jofa ikat. Loveseat pillow fabric, Manuel Canovas. Amethyst hurricanes, Treillage. Blue-and-white ginger jar lamp, Vaughan Designs.

  Two shades of blue combine in the Holland & Sherry silk curtains that frame the living-room windows. More blues appear in the Groves Brothers pillow fabric, on the custom chaise; the blue-and-white ceramics in the pedimented cabinet (designed by architect Tom Felton and made in New York); the Besselink & Jones sconce shades; and on the striĆ©-patterned walls. Merida Meridian carpet.
 Paneled walls and vintage-style cabinetry give the new kitchen a period look

A Holland & Sherry print with matte vinyl finish covers the kitchen banquette, situated near the new casement window. Photograph on wall, Ellen Morton.
In the butler’s pantry, statuary marble tops blue-lacquered cabinets lined with striĆ©-patterned linen.
Decorative floors and lacquered walls as glossy as candy apples create a dramatic backdrop in the dining room. Art, Melinda Hackett. The Jerry Pair table seats 10; the John Rosselli chairs are covered in leather and Quadrille silk in Meloire.
Burnished-gold tortoiseshell wallpaper from Schumacher adds a note of glamour at the library’s new built-in, mahogany-and-glass bar.
 The master-bedroom walls are upholstered in Bennison’s Kasumi pattern. The curtain and bed hanging fabric are also Bennison.

 Yellow grasscloth brightens the walls of a boy’s room. Curtain and bed fabric, Quadrille. Bedding, Leontine Linens.
Floral Carolina Irving fabric from John Rosselli lines the walls of a jewelbox-like powder room. Black-lacquer vanity by architect Tom Felton.

Isn't this posh Park Avenue pad a complete dream? I could move right in! Unfortunately I missed my opportunity... This primo address recently sold. Let's take a sneak peek at the MLS pics! I always love comparing realtor's pictures with those featured in shelter magazines, don't you?

This is seriously my all-time favorite entryway ever... It is positively stunning.
Superb Renovation at 812 Park Ave
So if you could live either in this elegant Park Avenue duplex or the Palm Beach Chic Florida town house Ashley decorated, which one would you choose? Which is more your style?


  1. I think this is one of the best homes ever! The entry is perfection. Elements I love to see in a home, Bennison fabric, Tiger Silk on stools, David Hicks rug..... The list goes on, and on. This is a post I will refer back to many times. Can you show more of her work? This is to die for. I call this layering perfection....

  2. That red lacquer dining room - amazing. I love every detail of this place. How I wish I could move it! :)

  3. This apartment is absolute perfection!! It would be a hard choice but I would have to choose Palm Beach to get out of the cold!!! xoxo

  4. OMG that Apple Red Lacquer.. whoever did that is a perfectionist painter!!! So amazing.. in love with the whole design!!

  5. Ooh and my favourite Cire Trudon candle! I hadn't heard of her but this is glorious.

    PS. how do you put the pin it sign on pics?

  6. I love EVERYTHING about this house!! I want the wallpaper in the foyer in my dining room so bad!!

  7. Absolutely divine! Such high style and taste!! The Gracie papered foyer is a showstopper. I hope the new owners keep the finishes and wall treatments.
    Great find, Andrea!

  8. Now you just know I love love love that chinoiserie wallpapered entry way. The library is Devine. Well, the whole place is actually! Thanks for sharing!

  9. she is one talented lady + I would have to take the Fla pad. xxpeggybraswelldesign.com

  10. kind of obsessed with both. Ashley Whittaker is by far my favorite designer. She uses color like no one else!! Tough decision, but I'd take Park Ave., mainly because of the aqua velvet sofa, greek key inlay hardwood and chocolate lacquer library..DELISH!!!

  11. This house is so beautiful. Every room just kept getting better.

  12. Total perfection in my book...just gorgeous! Happy 2014 to you.

  13. I love Ashley Whittakers work, she has a talent in mixing traditional but making it look modern and fresh!

  14. This house is a totally perfection! Love the entryway with that gorgeous wallpaper!

  15. Love both but have to admit, loving the Park Ave. Duplex a little more. :-)


Thank you for your lovely comments. They absolutely make my day!

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