Designing an apartment in the sky has its challenges—like getting the furniture up the elevator—but when Sara Touijer, principal designer and owner of Touijer Designs in Rye, NY, helped the owners of this Ritz Carlton apartment in White Plains, NY, renovate their second home, Touijer rose to the challenge.
“The relationship I develop with clients is one of authenticity,” says Touijer, who not only has 12 years in the design business but also recently helped design the interiors for 10 families’ homes for Rachael Ray’s Rebuild, a new series that comes out on Hulu Monday, October 23. “The nature of the work is very personal. Clients come to me for guidance with the design of their homes and trust that I will design spaces that they love and that fit them.”
In this particular instance, the spectacular views of lower Westchester played the leading role, but that’s not to say what is going on indoors isn’t just as important. “What I love about the apartment is how the color palette of blues and grays flows throughout,” says Touijer. “There is a sense of cohesiveness, with the layering of these two colors.” That cohesiveness carries through from the main rooms to each of the bedrooms and bathrooms.
In each room, the windows and the view are a key element and Touijers made sure to design the furniture layouts so as not to obstruct sightlines. “We maximized the vista and it became part of the design,” she adds.
To balance the subtle color palette, Touijer chose a statement Philip Jeffries wallpaper for the dining room wall. “Statement walls never go out of style,” says Touijer. “The dining niche has a stunning backdrop of wallpaper that pulls you into that corner. Your eyes are immediately drawn to it.”
Since time was of the essence for this project, and the kitchen cabinets were high quality, they decided to repaint them and replace the countertops with a durable solid white Quartz that allows the Neolith backsplash—with an elegant marble pattern—to stand out. “It’s so much easier to clean, too,” says Touijer. Practicality always plays a key part in any of her designs.
“Good design isn’t just about making a home beautiful,” she adds. “It’s about understanding how the people who live there live and use their space, then creating a beautiful space that supports how they live.”