Everyone has their own sense of comfort and design within their home. After all, the home is a personal sanctuary. But that doesn’t mean we can’t still find inspiration in all sorts of places, including this year’s ultimate Real Simple Home, a culmination of the best sponsors and designers have to offer in the way of organization and decor.
2020 has been a year of pivots, with both jobs and schooling shifting to place a greater importance on the home environment. Even the gym and an increased reliance on cooking have changed the needs we require from our abodes. So popular home magazine Real Simple decided to set up a kind of challenge.
This marks the third annual installment of that challenge, which brings together top designers and organizational experts in the industry to completely makeover a preselected space. This year’s target was a two-story penthouse apartment in New York City’s Upper West Side, which itself makes up part of a boutique condominium building called The Marbury, located on West 74th between Amsterdam Avenue and Columbus Avenue. There are only 14 residences in this building, each designed to respect old-world architectural elements such as high ceilings and large windows. As you can imagine, that opened up a ton of interesting opportunities for the Real Simple Home designers.
Notable names like Joy Cho and Rebecca Atwood had their hand in the final designs, along with support from the four sponsors: Arm & Hammer AbsorbX Cat Litter, The Glad Products Company, The Home Depot, and Kerrygold. The result is a culmination of interior design, organization, and DIY inspiration that might have you rethinking more than one space in your home.
“Over the past few months, our houses have become more than just our homes. Our spaces have been transformed into classrooms, offices, gyms, and more, which is no easy task in the midst of a global pandemic,” says Liz Vaccariello, Editor in Chief of Real Simple. “This year’s Real Simple Home is here to celebrate all that encompasses our homes in 2020 and shows how our spaces can be both incredibly beautiful and extremely organized.”
Easy DIY tips like adding wallpaper to the back of cubicle bookcases or using a paint technique that emulates wainscotting are peppered all throughout the article, and they all serve to empower rather than assert a particular style. For example, the piece proves that there are countless ways to create a gallery wall that works for you. It also highlights ways to feature clothing, fabrics, and books in a cohesive way. Organization is another key component of the redesign, with hacks for creating a study space and effectively storing totes in the pantry.
Each room in the apartment is pulled together with design elements of color, furniture style, and function, giving the reader a lot to dream about. If you’re more of a “see it and want it” kind of person, you’re in luck. Many of the items throughout the house are labeled in the images, identifying exactly how much it costs and where you can purchase it yourself.
In addition to inspiring the modern homemaker, Real Simple continues to promote an additional goal of promoting the work of partner Win, “the largest provider of shelter and permanent supportive housing for NYC’s homeless families, to raise awareness of the organization and its mission to break the cycle of homelessness.”
The finished Real Simple Home is featured in the October issue of Real Simple, both in stores and online.
The complete list of contributors includes Joy Cho, founder and creative director of the lifestyle brand Oh Joy!; Jamie and Fillip Hord, founders of the world-renowned organization service Horderly; Roxy Te Owens, entrepreneur and furniture designer for her “Society Social” line; Rebecca Atwood, designer, artist, and author; Kate Hamilton Gray, Brooklyn-based interior designer and founder of Hamilton Gray Studio; Max Humphrey, experienced home designer; Dayna Isom Johnson, trend expert for Etsy; and Katie Holdefehr, senior editor at RealSimple.com.