Exuberant, gregarious, conceptual and wonderfully layered best describes the eclectic style of Interior Designer Alex Papachristidis (a NYC native who grew up on Manhattan’s Upper East Side). As Alex says in the delightful article featured in Elle Decor (the ESSENTIAL Designer magazine we’ve talked about many times before)… He “loves a spectacle and has had a passion for pageantry and drama for as long as he can remember”; well it shows in the stunning NYC home of Alex and his partner, Scott Nelson. Alex’s spaces are both sumptuous visually and conceptually, making allusions to past motifs and aspirations but translating them for today in an ultra posh and sophisticated manner. My favourite moment of personal sharing in the article occurs when Alex reflects on his childhood and the moment when he realized he adored both Design and a “grand spectacle” when he was 5 years old and his mother took him to see a production of Verdi’s Aida (while in Verona at the ancient amphitheater)…As Alex says in the Elle Decor article… “Live animals—real camels!—waltzed out onto this open-air stage,” he says. “It was the most extraordinary thing I had ever seen.” I love the simplicity of how Alex became impassioned with Design and the extravagant beauty of that moment. Of the MANY photos in the Elle Decor spread, my personal favourites of this look and style are the following:
The library with its bold usage of patterns and colours is reminiscent of the Édouard Vuillard painting “Interieur a la Table à Ouvrage” painted in 1893 to me. The exquisite painting over the sofa is by Artist Rob Wynne, while the étagères and carpet are by Papachristidis.
An original 19th-century crystal and gilt bronze chandelier hangs above Alex & Scott’s custom-made dining table (surrounded by J. Robert Scott chairs upholstered in a Fortuny fabric).
The living room has a moody, dramatic palette and feeling that is both lush and calm, which softens the formality of the antique pieces and gilt accessory furnishings. One expects Margo Channing to stroll in at any moment reading her latest Broadway script. The hand-painted Zuber wallpaper is exquisitely grand and gives the apartment a historic and noble sensibility.
Playful, historic, witty and eclectic, the Entrance Hall serves double duty as the library as well. The usage of the fabric on both the walls and the ceiling is influenced by the French Campaign style, yet interpreted in a playful and dramatic manner. The stunning antique Chinoiserie bookcase and italian mirror give a sense of pageantry while the Lee Jofa fabric on the walls and ceiling give a dramatic and unexpected glamourous punch. I love the soft whimsy of the vintage light fixture, letting you know not to take everything to seriously.
The sumptuous deep purple silk velvet of the living room sectional adds warmth and visually softens the formality of the other more serious “period” pieces in the room. I also adore the hand painted marquetry technique used on the hardwood flooring, giving it both drama and a soft eclectic/Artisan nature.