An Artfully Designed Condo
Downsizing doesn't mean less when it comes to this creatively curated condo
When her longtime clients decided to downsize from a seven-bedroom home in Hilltop to a one-bedroom condo downtown, Nadia Watts knew their primary focus would be layout. “We started with the interior walls and how the rooms were working,” says Watts. The homeowners, Candy Roberts and her husband, know how to envision what a space could look like. She is an architect, he is a developer, and they’re both involved in historic preservation.
Because the couple collect art and antiques, Watts didn’t have to worry about finding the right pieces for the condo. Instead, she needed to become part curator and part magician to make their treasures fit. Watts designed the kitchen and dining area with the existing table in mind, a custom mahogany table made by a local artist. In the bedroom, Watts reused two existing side tables as nightstands. “They are the perfect size, but they were actually not made for that space,” she says.
Because Watts had previously worked with the Roberts, she knew that much of their art and furniture has sentimental value. They have collected art by artists they know, inherited antiques from both sides of the family, and purchased some iconic designs throughout their careers. The black arachnoid ceiling light in the living room is such a piece. “We have torn pages out of magazines for years,” Watts says, “and that was one of those special pieces for them.”
Achieving the right mix of old and new required a lot of thought. Watts painted the entire space in soothing, neutral name brand and color, so the artwork and architectural details of the building could stand out. “We are always conscious of the balance between pieces that are interesting and ornate with pieces that are calmer and don’t take away from the design of the space,” says Watts.
While the residence is well planned, it’s designed to evolve. “For some people and some designers, this goes here and that’s it–forever,” Watts says. “The Robertses move their art around. A painting will start in one place, and we love it, then we may change the orientation of the room and move the painting. Art is such a wonderful way to change a space.”