A 19th century Lincoln Park home becomes the ultimate expression of its dynamic owners' personalities thanks to Gemma Parker Design.
In the main living space (whose ceilings soar up to 30 feet), the works “Beverly Hills Woman” by Marco Casentini and “Marilyn Monroe Pink Bubble Gum” by Michael Moebius pop chicly against the room’s otherwise neutral tones.
“Every time that we take on a new project, it’s important that it be inspiring to us for a specific reason,” says interior designer Gemma Parker, “whether it’s the architecture, the scope of work/style that the clients are gravitating toward, or just the clients themselves.” For Parker, her recent Lincoln Park project—an 1890s single-family home that was originally a bakery and boasts a traditional exterior with modern interior from a renovation by the previous owner—hit the bull’s-eye on all three counts. Notes the designer, “It has dramatic 30-foot ceilings in the main space, which made it so important to play with scale and drama. The home was a blank slate as far as furnishings, and the couple wanted to integrate their tastes, and they each had strong opinions on style. Our goal was to blend their personalities into a unique and customized space.”
The breakfast room beckons with a custom round table by Gemma Parker Design, black cane chairs from the Kara Mann Collection at Baker and a striking Bolle pendant purchased through NIDO Living.
The clients’ love of art, music (they have a significant record collection) and entertaining was a critical factor in the design, says Parker. “In the lower level, we designed a lounge space that was focused around listening to and playing music; this space could also double as a guest bedroom when needed. The dining room and breakfast room were also really important spaces to the clients so that they could be close to their guests while cooking.”
A vibrant yellow artwork by Ole Aakjær makes an impactful impression near the dining room.
On the home’s cozy lower level, mini Crescent pendants by Lee Broom from Lightology above the bar and a ceiling finished in Vahallan wallpaper sourced through Bradley add visual interest.
Strong personalities both, the clients had their own unique views on design and style, so Parker focused on blending both to make the home feel customized and reflective of each. “They’re passionate about collecting interesting art and have an extensive collection,” Parker adds. “The challenge was to make the interiors sophisticated and beautiful and also be neutral enough to complement the artwork while also allowing the furnishings to stand out in their own way. We focused on a more graphic color palette of neutral and blacks and whites to highlight their fantastic art collection and make sure that the art was the prominent focus of the space.”
A custom record cabinet by Lagomorph Design perfectly showcases the clients’ passion for music.
The aspect of the project of which Parker is most proud? “That we created a sophisticated space that was truly reflective of the dynamic personalities of these clients, providing impact and excitement to an otherwise clean slate,” adding, “the dramatic and unexpected entry also recently won an ASID first-place award!”
Showstopping Napoleon Bee wallpaper by Timorous Beasties, a striking portrait by David Allan Brandt and chic checkerboard flooring by Renaissance Tile & Bath add up to a wow-worthy entry.
“The clients were thrilled to have a home that reflected both of their personalities but also was great for entertaining and spending time enjoying the things they love the most. They were thrilled with the overall design and the execution of the project. We are currently working on another project with them, which speaks volumes about this great collaboration.”
From concert posters to fine photography, the clients’ expansive art collection takes center stage throughout the abode.
Gemma Parker Design
Art near dining room
Breakfast room chairs
DAVID ALLAN BRANDT
DESIGN WITHIN REACH
Dining room lighting
Custom record cabinet
Breakfast room Bolle pendant
Living room accessories
RENAISSANCE TILE & BATH
TIMOROUS BEASTIES Entry wallpaper
Custom window coverings