Modern Living in West Chelsea

Two years ago I had the pleasure of working with a new homeowner through my colleague, Penny Drue Baird This gentleman was setting up his modern living in West Chelsea just off of Seventh Avenue, and being that he is in real estate, he knew what he was doing when he picked this sun drenched location. The entire south side is all windows!

I was asked to build three pieces: An entertainment piece, a desk and a built-in credenza for the bedroom.

The Living Room Piece


Of the three pieces, the black walnut entertainment unit was the most challenging because I had to hide all of the homeowner’s stereo equipment, an Apple television, and yet show off his oversized digital fireplace. I must have tried half a dozen layouts before I got everything to fit. But this was only half the battle

Once in the residence, the piece needed to be assembled and sit up against the wall as a stationary unit. “How were the audio guys going to get to the back of the unit and make their connections?” It became apparent that this entire piece needed to be on wheels, so that’s what I did. And the audio guys were very appreciative.

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The second piece was a white oak and bronze desk for the home office. The inspiration for this piece came from someone else’s design. I custom tailored it to fit the client’s needs and the room’s color scheme. The top was made of white oak with a small compartment at the back for electrical connections. In an effort to be sneaky and hid an ugly wire, the main power cord was snaked through the bronze leg and then trailed off to the wall outlet.


As a side note, while assembling the piece, the client took a front row seat on a sofa and watched as I fought to pull the power cord through the leg and into the desktop. It wasn’t going well and the wire was putting up quite a battle. After a few minutes, the client asked, “Do you ever lose?” And I responded “Never. I promised you that I’d hide the wire in the leg and I’m going to deliver.” It was just a matter of time, and in the end, I won!

The Bedroom Credenza

The last piece, which actually went in first, was the built-in clothing credenza for the client’s bedroom. This piece was built in my Beacon, NY workshop and made out of wire brushed rift white oak. The off-white finish consisted of a combination of paint and stain.

Once onsite, the main cabinet slid into its spot, but the top had to be custom trimmed to fit. Not an easy task, being that the faux leather wallpaper was already in place. After trimming the top a half a dozen times, I eased it into its resting spot without damaging the wall coverings.


As a final note, I heard by way of the designer, that the client really appreciated my skills, attention to detail and willingness to deliver what I promised.