After living through 18 months of contractors, carpenters, and craftsmen, Kevin Sharkey is finally enjoying life in his contemporary New York City apartment.
Paintings in the style of Franz Kline hang over the living room sofa.
"I've hung these Chinese paper panels in every apartment I've lived in," Kevin says of the framed pieces that appear custom-made for the space above the dining room's floating sideboard. Martha's love of collecting was the inspiration for Kevin to start his own collections of sterling serving pieces and lacquered trays, which are stored in the drop-down console. The lacquerware was purchased on trips to Kyoto, Japan.
To find the right wall color, Kevin tested neutrals a few shades lighter and darker than the floor. Heath, a Martha Stewart Living Paint shade (available at Home Depot), won him over. "I love how it shifts from khaki to ivory over the course of a day," he says. For the wall above the sofa, Kevin commissioned a pair of oil paintings, done in the style of Mark Rothko, as an homage to one of his favorite Abstract Expressionists.
"When I put my ties in the drawers, I knew it was real," Kevin says of his closet and dressing area, the last rooms to be finished. Designed by California Closets, the space accommodates every belt, sock, sweater, and suit -- as well as a massive piece of fool's gold on top of the island -- without feeling cramped. It has a well-concealed charging station for his electronics.
The bedroom's desk, chair, and armoire (not pictured) -- a set Kevin bought years ago but never had space for -- are oak. Because he didn't want the blond pieces to meld with the pale floor, he gave them a ceruse finish, in which the wood is stained black and then rubbed with white wax to highlight the grain for a graphic look that's dark but not too heavy.
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