And here we are. The first Monday of 2019. How is the year treating thus far? I’m still getting my sea legs under me a bit – I actually took a true holiday break (if you count chasing a three old and a 13 week old puppy a break!), but as I look around my house, I find myself itching to re-do (or finally finish!!) well, just about everything.

So I’ve been banking new design inspiration like mad. Like the home tour I posted last week, I’m currently drawn to spaces that exude a light and airy feel, major personality and design ingenuity. And the home I have to for you today has all that in spades.

Design Ingenuity to Start 2019 on apartment 34Design Ingenuity to Start 2019 on apartment 34

This stunning, modern, yet refreshingly innovative space is not in New York or LA. No – this loft is actually in Portland, Oregon. But it’s pure design genius shouldn’t surprise. It was designed by Jessica Helgerson, the designer behind of my favorite homes of 2018 (I smell a home tour highlights recap coming on later this week).

It’s a little hard to know where to start when describing my favorite elements in this space. And you would never guess this home was designed for a septuagenarian client. Makes one realize that good design is meant for everyone of any age.

But let’s start with the built-in seating. It appears to be a bit of a Helgerson hallmark and I am all here for it. She’s upped the ante this go-round with stunning custom built-in cabinetry – white oak in a slightly rosy pink stain and dotted with brass hardware that carriers throughout the entire home. I’m certainly smitten.

Design Ingenuity to Start 2019 on apartment 34

But take a look at that kitchen! Shall we discuss? Oh, we shall. You see more of that beautifully cabinetry. But square tile. Tiny square tile that glitters a bit like fish scales and read like subtle texture rather than in-your-face geometric pattern alla subway tile, covers all the walls and hood. That choice just feels new. Innovative. And exactly what we need in 2019.

The use of texture is also highlighted by the use of exposed brick and rustic ceiling beams that juxtapose smooth polished concrete counters and floors.

Design Ingenuity to Start 2019 on apartment 34

Forget open shelving. Recessed shelving it where it’s at for 2019. Calling it.

Design Ingenuity to Start 2019 on apartment 34 Design Ingenuity to Start 2019 on apartment 34

Small space living is all about storage, storage and more storage so I’m a huge fan of hiding any and everything that you can. This clean, closed storage aesthetic is definitely my jam. I appreciate that these cabinets have a different finish, demarcating a separate seating area and home office.

Design Ingenuity to Start 2019 on apartment 34

More exposed brick and concrete in the bedroom keep the slightly feminine aesthetic from feeling too saccharine.

Design Ingenuity to Start 2019 on apartment 34 Design Ingenuity to Start 2019 on apartment 34

All of the materials found in the kitchen are utilized again in the loft’s bathroom, but with genius additional details – like a built in cat box door!

But what I really love about this home is how it reminds that design truly matters. You can pile of bunch of iconic (read expensive) furniture into a space and have it look rurl good, but this space is stunning in that almost everything is a built-in design choice. It’s almost a allegory for the new year. Be patient. Pay attention to the details. Make considered choices. And revel in the outcome.

I’m going to reveling in this home for awhile.

photography by aaron leitz for new york times

What do you think?

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4 Comments

  1. stunning, all of it…i am stuck on the kitchen sink, and counters ❤️❤️❤️ wow…

  2. That dining table is exquisite. I disagree with the mini tile, especially in the bathroom. In a couple of years, it would be a gut remodel.

  3. Anyone know where that rug came from? It is perfect.