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Big Deal for a Small Space

A prewar one-bedroom decorated with special emphasis on a baby grand piano.

The foyer. Photo: Brian Bohon
The foyer. Photo: Brian Bohon

Clients come to Rayman Boozer and his design firm, Apartment 48, for his elegant way with robust color palettes and patterned walls. But sometimes the client relationship is personal, as it was with this one-bedroom in Prospect Heights that Boozer decorated for his nephew, James Porter, who works in marketing, and his boyfriend, Justin Bell, a lawyer who also happens to play the piano. Their requirement: a space for Bell’s baby grand, seen here, in the entrance foyer, which is about as good a space as any when you’ve got 1,200 square feet and a sunken living room. Boozer knows a thing or two about maximizing a small space, such as using different wall coverings to define discrete areas. Above, in the foyer, the Zoffany “Kashmir” wallpaper gives the setting for the piano a refined subtlety that doesn’t overwhelm the compact space.

A sunken living room may seem odd today, but in many prewar buildings it was a way of emphasizing the transition from the entrance hall into the living room. Here, Boozer plays up the changing environment by painting the walls of the living room in Benjamin Moore’s Lapis, while the trim though out the space is painted in Benjamin Moore’s Silver, then placing a lime-green desk to one side of the Crate & Barrel sectional sofa. Photo: Brian Bohon
The coffee table is from Crate & Barrel, and Apartment 48 designed the custom bookcase. “They wanted color and excitement throughout the apartment,” Boozer says, and he had to persuade them to paint the trim a soft gray instead of the customary white. The curtains are custom-designed from Schumacher. Photo: Brian Bohon
The dining area is open to the living room, so Boozer covered the walls of the niche with Cole & Son wallpaper to differentiate the space. The dining table is from Room & Board and the dining-chair seats are covered in Kelly Wearstler fabric. “Sometimes if you use an oversized object for a small space,” Boozer says of the chandelier from Circa Lighting, “it adds an element of surprise and feels unexpected, making the space feel larger than it actually is.” Photo: Brian Bohon
The bedroom is muted and calm in tones of blue and gray, with Benjamin Moore’s Windmill Wings painted on the wall. Photo: Brian Bohon
Boozer combined two closets into one master closet, then covered it in Romo wallpaper. He removed most of the doors in the apartment to create a more open feel. Here, his custom cabinetry brings order where it is needed most. Photo: Brian Bohon

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