There is nothing more exciting than finding new-to-me designers and falling madly in love with their portfolio of work… And that is exactly what happened when I discovered Olasky & Sinsteden, created by Catherine Olasky and Maximilian Sinsteden. The globe-trotting duo take an old-school, detail-oriented approach to design that absolutely speaks to my heart, and their background includes training and experience amongst the who’s who of the design world. Catherine spent five years working for Bunny Williams before moving to London to work for Sibyl Colefax & John Fowler, while Max began working for David Easton at age 15 before spending three years at Charlotte Moss. The current partnership was formed in 2009 when the two re-connected in London where Max was completing an installation at the Victoria and Albert Museum.
Today I am thrilled to welcome Catherine and Max, who have most graciously provided the captions to my favorite portfolio images below…. Photography by Read McKendree.
A corner of their 2016 Kips Bay Showhouse room featuring a custom chair in a Claremont woven silk/cotton fabric. The cushion on the chair has applique and embroidery by a favorite source, Penn & Fletcher; the design is an abstracted enlarged version of a leaf in the chintz fabric seen elsewhere in the room. A painting by Robert Kelly hangs above a vintage standing lamp from David Duncan Antiques with a custom shade by Blanche Field. The curtains were an adaptation of a design by John Fowler with custom banner weight bullion fringe applied to the leading edge of the valences.
Flanking an 18th century chinoiserie commode from Florence, borrowed from the renowned antiques dealer Helen Fioratti, are a pair of custom designed four poster beds made by J. Quintana Upholstery. The beds are covered in a Fermoie fabric in a custom color and dressed with custom embroidered linens by Nancy Stanley Waud Fine Linens. The pair of wall sculptures are by the artist Derrick Velasquez and are made up of strips of marine vinyl layered over wooden blocks. A Christopher Spitzmiller lamp with a custom Blanche Field shade sits in front of a mirror from Lee Callichio.
Image via KDHamptons.
The corner of a paneled library in a clients house on Guernsey. The walls are entirely faux painted to look like knotty pine. A George IV convex mirror purchased at auction hangs over the mantel. Rose Cumming’s classic print ‘Genges’ in linen on the sofa is complimented by Claremont’s ‘Semi-Montrichard’ on the cushion and a modeled leather from Holland & Sherry on the oak chair. The Robert Kime standing lamp has a Japanese paper shade.
Besselink & Jones sconces surround the painted paneled room. A Patterson Flynn & Martin carpet is fitted wall-to-wall. Soane’s ‘Quiver Klismos’ chair in black calfskin sits at the desk. The pair of red tortoiseshell obelisks are from Sybil Colefax & John Fowler.
A guest bedroom with a “prince” sized bed–halfway between a twin and a full–has walls upholstered in Bennison’s ‘Sarassa’ with bed hangings printed to match in their pattern ‘Petite Fleurs.’ A pair of ebonized bedside tables from Sibyl Colefax & John Fowler lend a place for lamps and a water carafe. The sheets were designed with and made by Nancy Stanley Waud Fine Linens.
Custom bauble trim in grey and white with a glass bead has a red thread running through it to echo the walling and curtain fabric from Bennison.
Braquenie’s ‘Vermicule Positif’ fabric is upholstered on the inside of the dresser drawers. A secondary set of sheets from Cologne & Cotton are crisp alternative for the summer months.
The kitchens appliances were all enameled in the same marine blue–even from different suppliers. Cabinets designed by O&S hang above and below ‘Calcutta D’Oro’ counters with Ann Sacks’ mosaic tiles above. The hood was custom designed with the builder Oikos Builders Ltd.
A client’s existing bed, bench and ink drawing were all merely polished, recovered and reframed and returned to their original position. An O&S designed bedside table by Daniel Scuderi is covered in linen and then lacquered and antiqued. The curtains are in a Suzanne Tucker ‘Botanique’ linen and the walls are upholstered in a Schumacher’s ‘Wainscot Linen Stripe’. A vintage spatterware jar is mounted as a lamp. Michael Smith’s Jasper ‘Eaton Square’ fabric is on the bench. The linen sheets were custom and the blanket is from Daylesford Organic.
In a guest WC, antique facade tiles are mixed with vintage art deco border tiles both from Solar Antique Tile. A Simon Palayle yellow and white striped wallpaper hangs behind the Vaughan sconce and an antique mirror. The sink and fittings are by Drummonds.
In the guest shower room, Lefroy Brooks UK sink fittings join a Drummonds undermounted sink and a shaped backsplash designed by O&S.
In a male client’s master bath, a Drummonds tub has a bathmat made by Nancy Stanley Waud Fine Linens. A wallpaper by Watts of Westminster hangs above v-groove three-quarter height paneling. Sconces by Westone Bathrooms. The scalloped roller shade adds privacy when needed.
19th century French terracotta tiles are accented by oak cabochons. A Dutch door out to the back terrace and a window, enlarged by O&S, allow a flood of light into the kitchen. Cafe curtains are in a Rogers & Goffigon wool sheer that never needs ironing.
The corner of a double drawing room is dominated by a curving bookcase from Sibyl Colefax & John Fowler with a chair and ottoman by Howard Chair. Farrow & Ball wallpaper and a Lee Jofa’s handblock ‘Wakehurst’ linen play against a painted by Jack Butler Yeats. O&S sourced all the cast iron radiators for the house. The carpet is ‘Minneapolis’ by Patterson Flynn & Martin.
The client’s mahogany chest was the basis for his dressing room which O&S modeled after an image of Mark Birley’s dressing room. Irish oak was cerused for the space and custom painted lampshades were done in the Bloomsbury Group taste.
The Powder Room sink was inset into an antique table with its original top from Patrick Jefferson. O&S designed the washstand-style backsplash and had the tiles painted to, roughly, match the space. Watt’s of London ‘Lorimer’ hand-blocked wallpaper, Besselink & Jones hurricane sconces and an antique mirror mixed well with the clients far-ranging collection of pictures.
A Guest bedroom has walls softly lacquered in cream with cream linen curtains bordered with cream cotton velvet. An assortment of Porthault patterned sheets sit below sconces from Hector Finch with custom swirl shades by Blanche Field. The clients existing tables had new stone tops made for them.
The Master Bedroom has a scheme anchored by a custom Doris Leslie Blau wool carpet with Lee Jofa’s ‘Bryston’ handblock chintz as the bed hangings, headboard and dust skirt. A glazed Rogers & Goffigon Linen, ‘Delphina II’ is on the curtains with a Claremont silk on the chairs by Minton-Spidell. Robyn Pocker created the gilt mirror for O&S over the mantel designed by Bill Curtis of Curtis & Windham Architects with whom O&S worked on the project. A Spitzmiller lamp has a lampshade in a Claremont cotton. A Chelsea Editions embroidered quilt dresses the bed with Nancy Stanley Waud sheets.
A renovated master bath allowed for a dressing table to be added. Custom sconces from Besselink and Jones follow the eave of the roof and hang on Venetian plastered walls. The chair from George Cameron Nash is covered in Claremont’s ‘Amelie’ fabric with a Rogers & Goffigon tape trim.
A pair of existing twin four poster beds have hangings in a Rogers & Goffigon sheer. The opera-style curtains with a rounded header were inspired by John Fowler and are made in a Colefax & Fowler chintz ‘Bowood’. The walls are painted in ‘Pink Ground’ by Farrow & Ball.
A Swedish antique chest in its original painted finish sits on a Stark patterned wool carpet and has a Vaughan table lamp. The monogrammed Euro squares and sheets are by Leontine Linens with antique duvet covers at the foot.
Catherine Olasky and Maximilian Sinsteden
Such incredibly beautiful interiors, yes? Classic, elegant, timeless, and chic, I simply could not be more impressed! A keen eye for detail is what separates the good designers from the great, and O&S positively excels in this department. No detail is overlooked, and I am now ready to go upholster my dresser drawers! Since 2009, O & S has completed projects in Dublin, London, Guernsey, Nantucket, New York City, Houston, Austin, Connecticut, and Boston. They have offices in New York, Houston, and London. For additional information, please visit Olasky & Sinsteden. For a wonderful Q&A, please click here and here to follow via Instagram for daily inspiration. And stay tuned, as I will feature a tour on Friday of a gorgeous Texas home designed by this dynamic young duo.