Sara here with another peek into a great living space! I am so excited to share with you the loveliest, warmest little family room from Jaclyn Isaac at Downtown Decorators in Jersey City, New Jersey. The comfy cozy space is home to Dana, a fragrance marketing executive, Drew, a Television producer and their wee little baby boy. This brave couple started this project when their son was only 12 days old! Wow. I chatted with Jaclyn about what she calls their warm-industrial-chic living room project and what it was like working alongside the chaos a newborn baby brings. Keep reading for the full interview!
Sara: What was the inspiration for this room?
Jaclyn: We went through a style exercise where we “branded” the space. I have a formal background in advertising building brands, so this step is super important to me as we build the interior story of the room. Our inspiration became “Warm Industrial Chic”.
S: Anything that already existed that you wanted to incorporate in the new design?
J: The lamp and the couch were existing and the clients wanted to keep them. Other than that we went all new.
S: Did you run into any challenges while you were designing the space?
J: My clients were hesitant about turning the couch around. It had always faced the other way. But they turned it around and lived with it that direction for a weekend and realized they loved it. Also, in this builder grade duplex, the cable wiring was on the other wall. We had to rewire the cable, but we were able to do that in a few hours. Also, they use the room primarily for entertaining, watching TV, and playing with the baby and his new baby friends. The issue we solved for was that it didn’t feel like it’s own space. Sometimes, with open concept layouts, it’s almost TOO open whereby the homeowner has a difficult time defining living areas. We did that here.
S: What is your favorite thing about this room?
J: The rug! It’s so bright and fun. They mixed and matched high end elements with retail, creating a beautiful space that everyone can easily achieve.
S: Were there any elements of the room that just came easily? Any that were hard to nail down?
J: The furniture placement for me came very easily. I could just picture the flow. Hard to nail down was the wall color. We didn’t want to go white, and we didn’t want to go too neutral, so we had to find an out of the box happy medium. It’s Poised Taupe by Sherwin Williams.
S: Is there anything you would go back and change?
J: In the future, I would love for the clients to change out that side chair. That’s something they had thought about getting rid of, but it was comfortable and served it’s purpose for nursing the newborn, so we kept it for convenience. Eventually, I would love to see a sexy low slung mustard side chair in that corner!
S: Any tips for people designing with a newborn?
J: Hire a designer! Think about the surfaces and textures you’ll need for those first few moments of life. The room serves dual purposes for both adults and babies, but at the end of the day it needs to be comfortable for a child’s first steps, their rolling around, and their baby friends to play too!
Sources: Side table, Anthropologie || Arc lamp, All Modern || Desk Chair, All Modern || Console Table, CB2 || Swan chair – Previously Owned || Sheepskin throw over side chair, IKEA || Rug,West Elm || Media Console,West Elm || Brass Table Lamp, West Elm || Couch, Restoration Hardware || Pillows + some accessories, Homegoods || Desk, Wayfair
Photography by Sameer A. K.