10 Easy Pieces: Kids’ Modern Beds


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The Remodelista editors provide a curated selection of product recommendations for your consideration. Clicking through to the retailer that sells the product may earn us a commission.



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Steal This Look: A Classic NYC Bathroom with a Modern Edge


Elizabeth Roberts’ overhaul of Jean and Tzu-Wei Lee’s brownstone in Cobble Hill, Brooklyn, is so full of memorable moments that it was hard to condense and curate the images for the house tour that we ran last year. There’s the dining room with views of the kitchen just below it; there’s the chic sunken den; there’s the breathtaking plaster ribbon of a staircase; and so on and so on.

We’ve already singled out the epic kitchen for a Steal This Look treatment (you can see it here); now we’re turning our attention to the master bath, a skillful study in black and white.

Photography by Dustin Askland, courtesy of Elizabeth Roberts Architecture & Design.

A vintage Art Deco double sink, upgraded with modern fixtures, is the pièce de résistance in the room.
Above: A vintage Art Deco double sink, upgraded with modern fixtures, is the pièce de résistance in the room.
Hexagon tiles, a classic NYC bathroom flooring, looks modern in black. The room is paneled in white Rhino marble with Nero Marquina marble wainscoting.
Above: Hexagon tiles, a classic NYC bathroom flooring, looks modern in black. The room is paneled in white Rhino marble with Nero Marquina marble wainscoting.
Soft waffle towels and botanical wallpaper add a soft, natural touch.
Above: Soft waffle towels and botanical wallpaper add a soft, natural touch.

Steal This Look

Flanking the bathroom mirror are two of Michael Anastassiades&#8
Above: Flanking the bathroom mirror are two of Michael Anastassiades’ Ball Bracket Wall Lights; $1,400 each at Lightology.
Wallpaper by Engblad & Co. in the Botanica pattern line the walls of the stall; $75 per double roll at Wallpaper Direct.
Above: Wallpaper by Engblad & Co. in the Botanica pattern line the walls of the stall; $75 per double roll at Wallpaper Direct.
For similar waffle towels, try Kiran Turkish Towels, in anthracite; $ each for the handtowels and $54 each for the bath towels at Matouk.
Above: For similar waffle towels, try Kiran Turkish Towels, in anthracite; $25 each for the handtowels and $54 each for the bath towels at Matouk.
For similar marble hooks, try the Fontane Bianche Wall Hooks designed by Elisa Ossino. They come in three sizes; from €0 at Salvatori. (See  Easy Pieces: Marble Hooks for more ideas.)
Above: For similar marble hooks, try the Fontane Bianche Wall Hooks designed by Elisa Ossino. They come in three sizes; from €160 at Salvatori. (See 10 Easy Pieces: Marble Hooks for more ideas.)
Dornbracht&#8
Above: Dornbracht’s matte black Tara line of bath fixtures is a modern classic (you can read our 2008 story about it here.) Find its Three-Hole Lavatory Mixer in matte black (pictured in the Elizabeth Roberts-designed bathroom) at Plumbtile for $1,915.84.



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Kitchen of the Week: An Imposing English Manor, Updated for Modern Family Life


Pevsner’s Architectural Guide: The Buildings of England details the style and history of every building of architectural significance in the country. England doesn’t suffer for lack of old buildings—there are 51 volumes in the series—but this manor still stands out. According to the guide on Lincolnshire, a county known for its rural beauty, “Few houses in the country fill one with such delight.”

When the new owners bought the historic property, they were intent on turning it into a warm family home without losing the grand proportions—including in the kitchen. To this end, they kept the oversized Gothic windows, the weathered limestone floors, an original fireplace, and the space’s dramatic loftiness. Then they tapped deVOL to supply them with their Classic English Kitchen cabinets. The result is a large, airy space that manages to be both fit for family life and respectful of its architectural pedigree.

Have a look. (For more on the renovation of this medieval manor, follow @the.history.keeper on Instagram.)

Photography courtesy of deVOL.

While the cabinets are traditional, the lighting, all by Original BTC, is thoroughly modern. (See High/Low: The Classic English Table Lamp from Original BTC.)
Above: While the cabinets are traditional, the lighting, all by Original BTC, is thoroughly modern. (See High/Low: The Classic English Table Lamp from Original BTC.)
Forming a low backsplash are deVOL&#8
Above: Forming a low backsplash are deVOL’s Crackle Metro Tiles. The countertop is Silestone. (Love art in the kitchen? See The New Art Gallery: 12 Favorite Kitchens with Paintings on Display.)
The cabinets are painted a custom peacock blue. The wall behind it is awash in the same color.
Above: The cabinets are painted a custom peacock blue. The wall behind it is awash in the same color.



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Kitchen of the Week: A Modern Space Thanks to a Traditional ‘Tsubo-Niwa’


Last week, we wrote about Fraher & Findlay‘s inspired update of a Georgian home. Today, we’re sharing their most recent project, a renovation of an old Victorian in Hackney, London, featuring a Japanese-inspired tsubo-niwa.

Tsubo is a unit of measure equal to the area of two tatami mats (about 3.3 square meters); niwa means garden. As a compound word, it describes a small courtyard garden—and that’s precisely what was added to the property to connect a new rear addition to the original building.

Inserting a classically Japanese feature into a classically European house may seem like an odd mismatch, but it somehow works—and nowhere is this more apparent than in the kitchen and dining areas.

Let’s take a tour.

Photography by Adam Scott, courtesy of Fraher & Findlay.

The kitchen and dining room are housed in the new rear extension of the home. To the left (just beyond the glass door) is the small courtyard (or tsubo-niwa) &#8
Above: The kitchen and dining room are housed in the new rear extension of the home. To the left (just beyond the glass door) is the small courtyard (or tsubo-niwa) “to help articulate a relationship between the existing house and the new architecture,” says Fraher & Findlay.
The cabinets were custom-made by the joinery experts at Oblique Furniture in London. The marble used for the countertop and backsplash was sourced from J&R Marble.
Above: The cabinets were custom-made by the joinery experts at Oblique Furniture in London. The marble used for the countertop and backsplash was sourced from J&R Marble.
The backyard is on the other side of the kitchen, directly across from the tsubo-niwa.
Above: The backyard is on the other side of the kitchen, directly across from the tsubo-niwa.



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10 Easy Pieces: Modern Metal Toilet Paper Holders


We’ve all learned never to take toilet paper for granted. Now it’s time to give the humble, hardworking toilet roll holder its due. Here, from couture to off-the-rack, 10 ways to lend your bathroom a little lift while dispensing TP in style.

Patinated Brass

Fog-Linen-brass-toilet-paper-holder. Above: Fog-Linen’s satisfyingly simple, made-in-India Brass Toilet Paper Holder is $30.
Lostine-Roland-toilet-paper-holder Above: Lostine’s brass and maple Roland Toilet Paper Holder, $55, is a scaled-down version of its Roland Paper Towel Holder, $65.
KBH brass toilet paper dispenser. Above: From Remodelista favorite KBH Københavns Møbelsnedkeri of Copenhagen, the KBH Paper Holder comes in two finishes: brass (as shown) and dark brass; €206.

Bright White

Curva toilet paper holder. Above: WS Bath Collection’s painted aluminum Curva Toilet Paper Holder is $91 from Modo Bath.
Kroft-white-modern-toilet-paper-holder Above: We love small Canadian company Kroft’s hooks and bathroom accessories, including the Modern Toilet Paper Holder, $79, of powder-coated steel and solid wood.
Petrified Designs toilet paper holder Above: Petrified Design of Austin, Texas, makes its Toilet Paper Holder, $50, in 12 powder-coated colors.
Sibella Court The Citizenry Banded Toilet Roll Holder Above: The Banded Toilet Roll Holder of powder-coated cast-iron and brass, $50 AUD, is one of several TP dispensers of note from Sydney, Australia’s, The Society “captained” by Sibella Court.

Modern Black

CB2 Rough Cast-toilet-paper-holder Above: From CB2’s Rough Cast bathroom accessories line of rough-hewn aluminum, the Black Toilet Paper Holder is $24.95.
New Made LA toilet paper holder Above: NewMade LA specializes in “affordable vintage-inspired home goods made in Los Angeles.” The NMLA shelf-style Metal Toilet Paper Holder comes in six powder-coated colors, $55, and brass, $65. Madewell also offers it in black, white, and yellow for $55.
Ferm Living toilet roll holder. Above: The Ferm Living Black Toilet Paper Holder of powder-coated metal and black-stained oak is $35 from Burke Decor.

We have a longstanding interest in the mundane things we use the most. Here’s our 2017 roundup of Indie Toilet Paper Holders.

Also take a look at:

  • 10 Easy Pieces: Classic Robe Hooks
  • 10 Easy Pieces All-Glass Storage Containers
  • 10 Easy Pieces: A New Wave of Organic Laundry Soaps



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A Modern Minimalist Galley Kitchen Design By An Annabelle Selldorf Protege


Lauren Wegel is an architect who loves succinctness. She began her career working for another New York minimalist, Annabelle Selldorf, which is how we met: see A Hardworking Brooklyn Kitchen By A Big Gun Architect. That was back in 2013, and, in recent years, Wegel has been running her own tiny firm.

The thought and care she puts into projects have won her a number of clients who have become good friends and repeat customers. Such was the case with fashion stylist Barbara Abbatemaggio and creative director Jakob Daschek. In 2015, one of Wegel’s first solo projects was their Reinvented East Village Galley Kitchen. Five years later and in need of more space for their two boys and many guests, the couple got Wegel to collaborate with them on the creation of an equally streamlined galley in their new East Village digs. Fun fact: the apartment, in a pre-war building, formerly belonged to actor Alan Cumming (scroll to the end to see what it looked like before).

Photography by Ed Hueber of Archphoto, unless noted, courtesy of Lauren Wegel.

The mandate for the kitchen was plenty of storage and a sleek but inviting look: Barbara, who is from Italy, campaigned for warmth; Jakob, who is Swedish, likes logic and order. Inspired by an old mantel opposite the kitchen, the three settled on a cherry finish for the majority of the cabinets, &#8
Above: The mandate for the kitchen was plenty of storage and a sleek but inviting look: Barbara, who is from Italy, campaigned for warmth; Jakob, who is Swedish, likes logic and order. Inspired by an old mantel opposite the kitchen, the three settled on a cherry finish for the majority of the cabinets, “a perfect match for the fireplace,” says Wegel.

“The wood has the effect  of weaving together the materials and palette, so that the kitchen, although modern, feels integral to the rest of the apartment.” The Arctic Pear chandelier just visible in the foreground traveled with the family from their last place. The brass sconce is the Double Uptown by Jones County Road.

The sink in the former kitchen was awkwardly wedged in the corner next to the window. Much discussion later, the new sink found its place in the center of the action. The counters are Bianco Gioa marble from Ionian Marble in Astoria in Queens, NY. The cabinets were custom built by Radical Design Solutions of Brooklyn.
Above: The sink in the former kitchen was awkwardly wedged in the corner next to the window. Much discussion later, the new sink found its place in the center of the action. The counters are Bianco Gioa marble from Ionian Marble in Astoria in Queens, NY. The cabinets were custom built by Radical Design Solutions of Brooklyn.



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Maximum Storage and Workspace in a Streamlined Modern Galley Kitchen


The galley kitchen with its straight-shot layout is derived from nautical design and celebrated for its space efficiencies. Restaurants favor galley setups and so do plenty of serious cooks, especially in urban settings (see our own Julie Carlson’s Brooklyn galley here).

The artist owner of this ground-floor flat in a Georgian townhouse in London’s Islington recruited Jack Trench, who runs an eponymous kitchen and furniture design firm, to come up with a clean-lined galley that looks at home in its historic setting. Maximum storage was also requested, along with plenty of elbow room. Join us for a look at the shipshape results.

Photography courtesy of Jack Trench.

Composed of streamlined cabinets of laminate-clad MDF with oak edging, the kitchen has windows at either end: the French doors open to an eating area and garden. The design is known as the JT Original.
Above: Composed of streamlined cabinets of laminate-clad MDF with oak edging, the kitchen has windows at either end: the French doors open to an eating area and garden. The design is known as the JT Original.

“To respect the building’s original cornicing, we decided to not the run the cabinets right up to the ceiling, so as to give breathing space to the architectural detailing.” explains Jack. He also notes that the counter on the left is a bit shallower than the other to work around an original chimney breast that the client’s architects weren’t permitted to remove. “For a bit of extra space, we inserted a full-length open shelf to keep everyday worktop essentials.”

The counters are Silestone in Gris Expo, as are the backsplashes (with a suede finish). The five-burner cooktop is by Siemens and the under-cabinet extractor is the Weston Cache 700. Note the integrated under-shelf lighting. For tips on recessed lighting, read Expert Advice from Architect Oliver Freundlich.
Above: The counters are Silestone in Gris Expo, as are the backsplashes (with a suede finish). The five-burner cooktop is by Siemens and the under-cabinet extractor is the Weston Cache 700. Note the integrated under-shelf lighting. For tips on recessed lighting, read Expert Advice from Architect Oliver Freundlich.
While the kitchen was being planned, things like juicers and ice cream machines were discussed. &#8
Above: While the kitchen was being planned, things like juicers and ice cream machines were discussed. “Our client wanted lots of cupboard space for both everyday crockery and glassware as well as less frequently used kitchen equipment,” says Jack. “We decided that the upper cabinets on the left-hand galley would be higher up for longer-term storage and also to give enough height from the cooktop to accommodate the built-in extractor.”



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Modern Love: A Contemporary House Updated with Antiques


Having written multiple stories on Colombe Design projects, I’m by now quite familiar with founder Marta Chrapka’s talent for creating new Old World homes that are elegant, luxurious, and traditional-with-a-twist. So I was surprised to learn that this lean, modern house (no graceful moldings or grand foyers in sight) in Podkowa Lesna, a suburb of Warsaw, is also her handiwork.

Upon closer inspection, though, I spied her signature touches—dramatic doors, impactful deployment of color, sculptural lighting, artful antiques, and an emphasis on craftsmanship—throughout the project, albeit tailored this time for a more modern and clean-lined aesthetic.

“Sure, it posed a challenge,” says Marta, about the house’s unadorned bones. “We didn’t have the proportions that I am used to, the nobly aged floor, and all the elements I am usually focused on to reveal their beauty—only the empty spaces. But the real challenge was an attempt to create an interior whose design would bring to mind functionalist/modernist interior but in today’s version.”

It was a challenge that she met with aplomb. Let’s take a tour of this unique house.

Photography by Pion Studio, courtesy of Colombe Design.

A couple, both lawyers, hired Colombe Design to put their stamp on this blank slate of a home. In the modern kitchen, Marta was able to insert some Old World style in the form of hand-painted blue and white porcelain tiles, at right, from Majolika Nieborow, a family-owned business founded in 8data-src=
Above: A couple, both lawyers, hired Colombe Design to put their stamp on this blank slate of a home. In the modern kitchen, Marta was able to insert some Old World style in the form of hand-painted blue and white porcelain tiles, at right, from Majolika Nieborow, a family-owned business founded in 1881.
The kitchen has a sleek and sophisticated look thanks to stained ash cabinets, a black granite countertop, and integrated appliances. The String Cone Pendant Lights are by Michael Anastassiades, from Flos.
Above: The kitchen has a sleek and sophisticated look thanks to stained ash cabinets, a black granite countertop, and integrated appliances. The String Cone Pendant Lights are by Michael Anastassiades, from Flos.
The custom glass and steel door leads to the pantry. &#8
Above: The custom glass and steel door leads to the pantry. “That was the hardest part of the design—a pivot hinge, tall height, and no frame. Nobody wanted to take the risk, but finally we did it,” says Marta.
Inside the pantry, a surprise—a stubbornly old-fashioned larder. &#8
Above: Inside the pantry, a surprise—a stubbornly old-fashioned larder. “It was the owner’s idea—he had an old table that belonged to his grandmother. So we created the space around this table, trying to recreate the atmosphere of 1930,” says Marta. The tiles are custom. “It’s a typical Polish pattern, found in every house in Warsaw. After the war, it was almost forgotten, but we found a guy who knew how to produce it in exactly the same way.”
&#8
Above: “There were many memories built around this table, and the owner did not want to get rid of it,” says Marta.



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In Dutchess County, NY, an American Classic Gets a Modern Makeover


Remember old-fashioned networking? It was through their kids’ NYC elementary school that Jill Porter met Alexandra and Brian Tart. The couple—she’s a social worker, he’s a publishing executive—mentioned that they have a farmhouse in Dutchess County, New York, and on learning that Porter runs her own architecture firm, filled her in on their longstanding hopes and dreams for their place. That’s how Porter ended up with a commission to usher the family’s beloved 200-year-old retreat into the 21st century—and how the Tarts ended up with the ultimate headquarters for riding out the pandemic.

“Although stately and proud,” Porter tells us, “the existing house showed its age: walls sagged, floors sloped, and an ill-conceived addition felt like a disjointed accessory. Perhaps most notably, the structure lacked any relationship to the beautiful property: it cocooned occupants in intimate, dark interiors that were charming on snowy days, but less so on glorious summer evenings.” Porter’s response was three-fold: she designed a new, two-story addition with a wrap-around porch; oriented all of the living spaces outward to the open fields; and fortified the existing structure “to not only stitch it to the addition but give it the structural prowess to last another 200 years.”

Photography by Amanda Kirkpatrick, courtesy of Jill Porter Architect.

The back porch, both screened and open-air, serves as the family&#8
Above: The back porch, both screened and open-air, serves as the family’s outdoor living quarters during the warm months. The parents’ new bedroom and bath is in the second-story addition. (Scroll to the end for a glimpse of the existing exterior and the house’s Before and After floor plans.)
Porter gave the addition &#8
Above: Porter gave the addition “a modern hue” by using black-framed windows that came pre-finished from Marvin. In place of  the old asphalt roof, she introduced matte-black standing seam metal, the architects’ favorite: see Hardscaping 101.



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Kitchen of the Week: A Sleek Modern Kitchen with a Hippie Heart


We are all trying to make more low-impact choices here at Remodelista, so it was with a particular thrill that we recently stumbled upon Sustainable Kitchens, a kitchen design and manufacturing company based in Bristol, England, that prioritizes ethical materials. Its core principles—a reliance on solid, responsibly-sourced wood and non-toxic materials; an emphasis on locally sourced products; and a commitment to reducing waste and replanting trees—grew out of founder Sam Shaw’s interest in sustainable forestry (he has an environmental management degree) and passion for woodwork.

What we especially admire about Sustainable Kitchens’ projects is that they are both eco- and design-conscious. Take this London townhouse kitchen designed by the firm in collaboration with architects at Conibere Phillips. It’s housed in a bright new addition to the home. And while the joinery is sleek, modern, and minimalist, its heart beats green.

Let’s take a tour.

Photography by Charlie O’Beirne, courtesy of Sustainable Kitchens.

The extension is light-filled thanks to a skylight, an oversized window, and a large glass pivot door that leads to the patio.
Above: The extension is light-filled thanks to a skylight, an oversized window, and a large glass pivot door that leads to the patio.
Sustainable Kitchens offers three levels of service: Honest (self-installed cabinets in a choice of three styles); Bespoke (custom cabinets installed by the company); and Concept (cabinets made of &#8
Above: Sustainable Kitchens offers three levels of service: Honest (self-installed cabinets in a choice of three styles); Bespoke (custom cabinets installed by the company); and Concept (cabinets made of “new and tricky materials involving lots of R&D,” says marketing manager Zoe Holland). This kitchen is bespoke, using the company’s flat-panel style.
The space is &#8
Above: The space is “color-blocked” not with paint but via materials. Here, oak paneling and built-ins offer a warm visual break from the white cabinets. The faucet is Perrin & Rowe’s Metis Sink Mixer.



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