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Design

Love Wallpaper?? Then Feast Your Eyes On This NYC Apartment (There Are 5 And They Are All Awesome)

Jess here! Before Megan gets into the incredibly beautiful home she designed, I thought it would be fun to give a little back story to how we know each other:) Megan and I actually went to college together, studying theatre! Now years later, we’ve reconnected through design which is extremely cool and truly wild. She’s such a talented actor and as shown by this home (and her other designs – go to her Instagram to see what I mean) has built an awesome design career that’s full of fun, fresh, and boldly patterned spaces. A true creative. So when she reached out about featuring this project on the blog it was the easiest “yes”. Another easy “yes”? Wallpaper. If Caitlin didn’t convince you last week, she will. Take it away Megan:)

The road to building a career in interior design is much like any endeavor, at the bottom of the mountain you have no experience of the actual climb, the circumference is wide and varied and as a result, you will do anything and everything to start to make your way up. My first official solo client was in 2014, while I knew I had good style impulses and an “up for anything” attitude-I was so so so so very green-my greatest lessons along the way have not so much been in honing my skills (though I have of course improved), but rather in learning how to work with, talk to, and ultimately select clients. The thing about interior design that is so different than most other types of artists is that you aren’t selling a finished product, you are in a constant state of pitching ideas which is so counter to any sort of creative process. Imagine being a painter painting someone’s portrait, and before every brushstroke you take you are required to ask for feedback and ultimately permission before you put paint to paper. However, as time passes and steps are taken up the mountain the circumference becomes narrower and narrower, you learn what you love, what can’t work without and with that little by little you gain agency to work with clients who are in alignment. For me, all roads lead to pattern-any potential clients adverse to wallpaper need not apply. 

I am what I like to refer to as a “person with a preference for cosmetic renovation”. Growing my career in NYC, it’s not as if I was ever in the position to rip down a prewar apartment building and start from the ground up. That coupled with the co-ops and building approval requirements galore, I got into the habit of creating spaces that had the most amount of impact with the least amount of invasive construction. I’m not sure which came first the chicken or the egg-but wall treatments, specifically pattern forward ones quickly became the heart of all of my work. 

My client Sarah reached out to inquire about hiring me to help transform a recently purchased two-bedroom co-op built in 1960 (and not updated since), into a fresh and custom three-bedroom home for her family, which includes her husband and two young children. In the consultation phase, Sarah shared some images and thoughts on styles she admired, and right away I knew she was going to be a client who spoke my language and would be a privilege to work with. This project was entirely “from scratch” in that with the exception of one small side table there was nothing at all the family was bringing with them to their new home in terms of furniture and décor.

The entire residence was taken down to the studs, the bathrooms and kitchens were gutted, a third bedroom was created and from there we set upon the task of creating a custom home that not only fit the family functionally but was a fully realized comprehensive design where every room and space made a statement on its own but played nicely with the rest of the home.

THE NURSERY

Wallpaper | Chair (similar) | Pillow | Ottoman | Flushmount | Baskets | Rug

Crib | Art

This was the smallest room in the house that we created by walling off what was once a dining nook parallel to the kitchen. We wanted to create a soft whimsy pastoral vibe while not being thematic or juvenile. We opted for the illustration style floral wallpaper that allowed us to use big doses of unapologetic pink elsewhere in the room like the scalloped style velvet chair. I like this print a lot because of its versatility, at some point in the future their daughter might want to shift the look of the space, there are many ways this wallpaper could be built upon to entirely change up the design of the room without changing the walls themself. Throughout the home, we executed custom millwork to do double duty covering up the ever so common NYC HVAC units as well as providing some extra storage be that shelving or cabinetry. 

Dresser | Mirror | Rabbit Lamp

THE KID ROOM

Wallpaper | Bed | Rug | Table Lamp | Baskets

Dresser | Pendant

This room is probably my favorite in the home-I have been wanting to do an entirely aggressive plaid room my entire career and it finally came to pass here and now with this little boy. The large-scale blue plaid was one of my first suggestions for the space and Sarah was quick to confirm she was onboard. From there I layered in modern blue and yellow shapes and materials to create a light-hearted but super chic design. Favorite elements of the space include the quirky-cool blue pendant light and bright yellow one-piece desk chair, perfect for climbing all over and homework procrastination (or is that just me?).

Bookcase | Striped Bins | Desk | Chair | Woven Basket

THE PRIMARY BEDROOM

Bed | Tassel Lumbar Pillow | Bedding

Nightstand | Rug | Sconce | Tray | Rattan Tissue Box Holder

Very in line with our overall philosophy for this project, the requirements for this room were not boring, but ultra-luxe and relaxing. I’m a blue woman through and through and as such reserved my favorite pale blue hues for this room. We wrapped the walls in a surprising and abstract blue pattern grasscloth, textured natural fiber papers are an absolute must in my opinion when it comes to crafting a sanctuary-style bedroom. The wall treatment absorbs sound, so the space literally feels different when you step foot inside. We opted to paint our millwork in a blue to match and topped off the room with a custom size area rug so as to continue in the work of dampening any opportunity for unwanted sounds bouncing off the floor or walls.

THE PRIMARY BATH

Vanity | Double Sconce

In opposition to the community bath, the goal with this bathroom design was to create as clean and open a space as possible. Per NYC living we didn’t have an endless amount of square footage in this bathroom, so my goal was to stitch together a monochromatic design that created a sort of soft grey haze across the space without any jarring design decisions halting you in your tracks. It was imperative however to weave in a certain amount of variation through shape. So while we stuck to a consistent Carrara marble throughout, we played we shape, pattern, and scale in pairing herringbone, large and small square tiles, and decorative baseboard and pencil trim tile all together so as to have a thoughtful amount of variety within a singular highly consistent design.

THE FOYER

Wallpaper | Console | Mirror | Vase | Sconce | Tray | Pineapple Basket | Striped Basket | Brass Door Knobs

Flushmount

We all know how the saying goes, “the foyer is the first impression of one’s home-it sets the tone”. I like to think of the foyer as being a sort of magical pass-through from the outside in where you are hit with a splash of something special all on its own. As I mentioned previously which wall patterns we intended to use and where were initial and core to the thought processes in the design of this home. In the end, we went big in the foyer selecting a graphic metallic brushstroke pattern from Schumacher. The paper was certainly a splurge, but using it in a small confined space allowed us to use less but on all walls for full impact. The foyer needed to be family functional so we went with a dark acrylic table that could stand up to bumps and bangs with no sharp edges, as well plenty of storage baskets that also provided a touch of whimsy (note the pineapple).

THE COMMON SPACE

Sofa | Rug | Coffee Table

Burl Wood Console | Large Geometric Boxes | Medium Geometric Box | White Chair | Planter | Table Lamp | Frame TV

We knew we wanted to implement pattern on our walls in just about every other room in the home-so to counter that decision I decided to flip the switch and keep the walls in the common space a nice crisp neutral white with a warm grey neutral trim for contrast. This decision allowed us to hone in on curating a combination of “showstopper” pieces to fill the living and dining room. Whether it be the burl wood media console, blue glass mosaic buffet, green velvet sectional, or palm pattern side chairs, the goal for this room was to create a feast of interesting things to look at all while being family-friendly in terms of use. The sectional for example while velvet is made of synthetic materials, therefore, resisting stains unlike a silk or cotton velvet in comparison. The blue dining chairs ended up being an obsession of mine-I think they are about as incredible as a dining chair can be, so stylish and unique, but plastic which as a new mom am learning that anything “wipeable” is GOLD.

Dining Table (unavailable) | Blue Dining Chair | Captain Chair | Buffet | Rug | Chandelier | Diptych

THE COMMUNITY BATH

Mirror | Vanity | Wallpaper

This is a term I made up for one reason or another for the second bathroom that would serve as both the kids and guest bath. However, the word “community” ultimately had a lot to do with the vision behind the design as I aimed to create a room that was both wildly colorful, pattern forward, and engaging for the kids while still being interesting and appropriate for adult eyes as they experienced the design as a guest. Essentially, I wanted to implement the fun of a powder room with the function of a kid’s day-to-day bath. One of the things I am most proud of in the home is the tile floor in this bathroom. We explored so many different options-painted tile, mosaic patterns but ultimately nothing was quite a fit. Initially, I was looking to source blue penny tile but wasn’t able to find a color that quite fit the bill when it occurred to me that blue grout might do the trick and did it ever. The combination ended up being one of the most clever in the space all while amazingly affordable.

By the time this project reached completion over a year had passed and I was a few more steps up the mountain. The opportunity to work with clients who are an effortless fit and are wholeheartedly open to implementing your ideas helps to expedite your journey up. This project allowed me to create a space in the way I know best, to follow my impulses, and to deliver on a design that not only reflected my clients but also me. I’m nowhere near the top of that mountain yet, but the further up I get the more of me I see, and I can only imagine what pattern I’ll find at the peak. 

*Design by Megan Hopp
**After Photos by Kelsey Ann Rose

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Rusty
20 days ago

Now if I didn’t gave 100 year old textured walls, I think I’d be considering wallpaper.
A striking and unique home! Your clients must be very pleased. Kudos, you multi-talented maestro!😊

Karen T.
20 days ago

Wow–you brought so much light into the space and I love your mix of patterns and colors! So inspiring! Beautiful work.

Molly
20 days ago

Love the idea of adding blue grout to white penny tile for color! I, too, wanted to make my kids’ bathroom have an unexpected pop but didn’t want white grout because it gets so dirty. This is a great solution.

Do you have a link for the grasscloth in the primary bedroom?

Karina
20 days ago

Is the wallpaper in the bedroom actual grasscloth? Where is it from? Stunning!

Meredith
20 days ago

I love how this apartment isn’t overly designed. It’s very peaceful, which I’m sure is important when you live somewhere like New York. I also love the music dress in the nursery. That’s the first time I’ve ever seen sheet music used in an art piece that isn’t 100% tacky.

Cris S.
20 days ago

Beautiful home and great use of pattern. But it was when I got to the last picture of pregnant pattered you that I thought “Go on with your bad self Megan!”

Sarah
20 days ago

I just wallpapered my laundry room and “community bath” (love that term) and I am 100% here for alllll the wallpaper moments.

But we NEED to see the kitchen!!

20 days ago

Beautiful work, and so much brighter and more functional than before. I am dying to see the kitchen though!

Amanda
19 days ago

Every room in this house is so fun, the wallpaper was clearly chosen so thoughtfully to fit the residents and to adapt to their needs over time, which I really like. My concern with wallpaper is how difficult it is to change, which makes me worry about choosing something trendy that I’d want to replace in a few years. I love the bedroom especially, it adds so much texture but doesn’t take away from the rest of the room.

AzureSongLA
19 days ago

Gorgeous! It’s giving me Jonathan Adler happy/glam vibes, only more accessible! I’d love to know the pale blue color used on the millwork in the primary bedroom. I want to paint my front door that color and I’m angst-ridden over the specific color!

Trly
19 days ago

Bravo!!!! I recognized those NYC bathrooms from my own renovation experience, and you absolutely knocked it out of the park! Working with extraordinarily small spaces is no joke, and your use of color and restraint was fantastic. Best trick ever… blue grout! Anyone who has ever had white grouted bathroom floors will understand how brilliant your decision was both esthetically and practically. Congrats.

priscilla
19 days ago

What an undertaking!

Josh
19 days ago

While this is a great space, I actually like some of the before better. It needed updating, but I don’t see the need for a total renovation. One thing to consider is the need for keeping it unique and timeless. I don’t see unique or timeless about the update.

Jody Stover
19 days ago

I can’t be the only one wondering about her lip colour in the last picture?!? Its lovely!

Karlene
19 days ago

I am a big fan of Megan Hopp, and have followed her career for several years. She always gives the best and most practical information on design when she appears in Domino, MyDomaine, etc. (I’m a design junkie, and I’ve read a lot of articles about design, and hers were actually GREAT tips that I had never heard before — and it takes a lot to surprise me.)

Megan’s style is distinctive and playful, never stuffy and always fresh. This apartment did not disappoint! Fun, wonderfully chosen wallpaper make this a very happy home for the owners. I really hope Megan’s projects continually show up in the EH blog.

Bethany
19 days ago

This is beautiful! Does anyone know the source on the art in the plaid bedroom? The photograph next to the bed? My grandparents honeymooned somewhere very similar in the 40s.

AzureSongLA
19 days ago
Reply to  Bethany

Do an image search for the Wigwam Motel Route 66. You’ll find lots of great pictures.

Paula Carr
19 days ago

I love wallpaper, in general, but I really hate plaid wall paper. All the others are great, though!

kk
19 days ago
Reply to  Paula Carr

Yeah the plaid everything room is really is off for me… rest of the place is cute !

Sheila
19 days ago

Wow, every one of those wallpapered rooms absolutely sing – all different but in perfect harmony!

Patti
18 days ago

I agree with others – SHOW US THE KITCHEN!!

17 days ago

Awesome wallpapers. I love all the designs you posted., so many fun ideas!

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