Not all influencers and entrepreneurs live in large homes. Many of them, especially in major cities have smaller apartments and condominiums.
But lack of square footage (at least compared to most suburban homes) doesn’t need to equal lack of style. These influencers and entrepreneurs know how to do the best with what they have and often work from home. Here are their favorite rooms and tips for others looking for inspiration.
Dr. Emilia D. Taneva
Dr. Emilia D. Taneva, DDS, MS is more than an orthodontist, she’s also an influencer and she recently became a mother for the first time. But, there is nothing infantile about her son’s nursery. “As a room we spend a great deal of time in and around, I decided to choose modern furniture and decor that matches the rest of the apartment’s contemporary design,” she says.
“Style, comfort, and functionality were also important. I have found sweet sophisticated curves and detailed carvings to create a soothing and elegant atmosphere. A happy nest for me and my baby to relax, feed, and sleep, even as I’m snoozing in a nearby chair.”
While strikingly stylish, the new mom was practical when it came down to making choices about the furniture. “Our master bedroom is decorated in grey and I followed a similar color palette. Both the tufted upholstered bed and the dresser with changing top are an Antique Grey Mist. The crib is distressed with rubbed edges and has end panels upholstered in stain-resistant fabric with deep button tufting. It’s also convertible and can transform into a toddler bed, as the baby grows bigger,” Taneva explains.
A smart parent already, she sourced the furniture from Restoration Hardware’s Greenguard Gold Certification line. “This means the products have been tested and verified to meet stringent chemical emissions standards. The result is improved indoor air quality in the home, reduced chemical exposure for you and your family, no formaldehyde and phthalates which contribute to health problems such as asthma and allergies.”
Stylist, founder and Creative Director of The EveryBody Wrap Elizabeth Kosich lives in a unique apartment in Manhattan, complete with a rare wood-burning fireplace. “I created a cozy space around the fireplace with warm, organic materials like wood, seagrass, leather, linen and fur,” she says.
Another interesting element is the ceiling height, which is thirteen feet. This also influenced the color scheme. “Because the walls can handle drama, I went with bold, Sister Parish yellow paint, reminiscent of grand Park Avenue homes. I chose yellow for its healing powers too, since prior to this move, most of my belongings were lost to fire, theft and mold,” the designer reveals.
The room is anchored by a Jonathan Adler Lampert Sofa upholstered in canary yellow linen. But, the rest of the furniture is just as intentional. “I bought the 1930s French leather club chairs in Provence over 20 years ago, and the animal skin rug is from a trip to South Africa,” she explains.
For those who feel inspired by this look, Kosich suggests not being afraid of color. “But limit the palette to one dominant color and two others that complement it, she says. “Balance the palette with warm, natural elements to temper the color boldness, add texture and keep the look grounded.”
Blogger and designer Hanna Friberg lives in approximately 560 square feet of pure glamour. Because this is a small amount of space, she stays organized with built-ins she customized. ”It’s the best thing I’ve ever done,” she says.
Friberg has shelves for everything including electronics, paperwork, jewelry and shoes, as well as cosmetics and toiletries she can’t fit in the bathroom. “I never knew I needed the storage. Perfect with a built-in bookcase because it is not only a beautiful interior design piece, but also very practical.”
For others trying to style shelving, she recommends using Pinterest for inspiration but warns not to overdo it. “Rather bigger than smaller things in it. Bigger books, bigger vases, etc.”
Founder of Chakra Girl Co and host of the popular podcast Chakra Girl Radio, Amber-Lee Lyons and her husband recently moved into a new, very chic apartment in Montreal. “Our vision for the space is Parisian Boho, combining elegance with geometric shapes, some earth elements, like plants, flowers and landscape art so we almost feel like we are on vacation all the time,” shares Lyons.
The decor also connects not only to the Chakra Co brand, but also Lyons’ general approach to life. This is particularly true of her choices for the dining area. “It was important for my space to relate to my brand because I work from home. So we used rich velvet chairs, lots of candles, crystals and Parisian elements to give it a spiritual and witchy vibe.”
Most of the furniture is from The Cross Design and West Elm. But the piece-de-resistance, the chandelier, was meant to be (stars and chakras aligned) because it already was there when she moved in.
Ali Lasky is the founder and president of The Influence, an agency that specializes in celebrity partnerships, public relations, events, and social media influencer campaigns. She lives in a luxury apartment building in West Hollywood.
Lasky really enjoyed designing her eclectic living room. “I love mixing modern and contemporary pieces with antique-inspired items for a touch of glam. A gray color scheme is soothing and relaxing to me personally, and the palette allows you to have fun with decor.”
One noticeable theme throughout the room is mirrored furniture. While it all has a cohesive aesthetic, each piece surprisingly sourced from a different place. The rest of the accessories are also a mix of high and low.
“I found the wall mirror after searching on Overstock for some time. A few items are from Ron Robinson at Fred Segal. One of the glass candles is from a store I found in Paris during Fashion Week two years ago. The crystal flower was a place setting at my friend’s wedding. I found my favorite gold picture frame at Home Goods and then inserted a saying I love, Dream + Believe.”
For those who aren’t quite sure how they want to decorate, Lasky recommends scrolling through social media, but that isn’t her only trick. “If you get an idea in your head, just keep Google imaging that phrase and going through retail sites and you will eventually find it. Also, HGTV. I love watching all the design, real estate and decor shows.”
Luke “The Dingo” Trembath
Luke “The Dingo” Trembath is a professional snowboarder and co-founder of Find Your Grind, which is a modern self and career discovery platform. His Downtown Los Angeles apartment features two coveted views, of the Hollywood Sign and the Staples Center.
“I love [my office] because this is my place to reflect. It is where I was able to identify my passions after pro snowboarding and translate that into helping others identify their own passions as well as how to turn that into a career with Find Your Grind,” he says. “Sitting over the famous Figueroa Boulevard looking down the street into Los Angeles financial district and being able to see all the old buildings like Hotel Figueroa, the Hollywood sign—all while playing music from old Technics turntables, brings me peace. The chaos below gives me a feeling of strength.”
Accessorized with puppets from Trembath’s television show, The Adventures of Danny & Ten Dingo, this room so uniquely reflects his personality.
Founder of ArtSugar, which sells prints of the most popular artists on Instagram, Alix Greenberg lives in a studio apartment in downtown Manhattan. “A good family friend of mine, David Rogal of Vicente Wolf helped me design the space. He knew my needs in structuring my apartment to accommodate my entrepreneurial lifestyle, so work and non-work are very much separate,” she says.
Greenberg has art everywhere, yet her apartment looks cohesive. “I lean art on my bookshelves. I hang to cover an entire space and create gallery walls. I have amassed a very small collection of original pieces by emerging artists I’ve met, and also incorporate some framed prints from ArtSugar as well.”
For people trying to curate their own art collections, Greenberg suggests following your intuition. “A lot is gut intuitive and you should surround yourself with things you love. I always have a tape measure with me because you need to have the same amount of inches surrounding each piece in a gallery wall. Otherwise it looks messy.”
She also recommends framing gallery walls in white, which she offers on ArtSugar. “As long as each piece is the same distance apart from the other, you can put together a really interesting wall that doesn’t need to break the bank.”
Danielle Havasy, founder of Awake Yoga & Meditation, which brings wellness programs to schools and businesses lives in Westchester County, New York, in a townhouse. Havasy and her husband furnished the dining room with chic estate sale furniture. However, “Most of the accessories are antiques passed down from family,” she says.
But, there are instances when practicality has to rule out. Havasy purchased the area rug from Overstock.
Her favorite feature of the kitchen is the bay window. “I love sitting at the kitchen table every morning with a cup of coffee and looking out my window as the world begins to wake up.”
As someone who appreciates nature, Havasy’s home is filled with plants. “We have quite a few plants in my kitchen and each one has a name,” the entrepreneur and teacher reveals.
Co-founder of farm-to-shelf startup Solari Hemp, Myorr Janha is a former New Yorker living in West Hollywood, California. While you can take someone out of New York, you can’t take the New York out of them. The painting of Notorious BIG in Janha’s office by Patrick Ganino is certainly proof of that. “The painting was in my former office in New York, where I spent most of my career as CMO to Russell Simmons. The painting connects my former life to my new life as a CBD entrepreneur for newly launched, Solari Hemp.”
But more than just a statement piece, Janha feels a true connection. “I have it to remind me of where I come from and hard work. I grew up in Clinton Hill Brooklyn around the corner from Biggie. He accomplished so much in a short amount of time. He left us early, but his music stays in rotation.”
Luigi Bianco, vice president of Ernest Supplies and the more moderately priced Ernest skincare, a line exclusive to Target, lives in a London flat that’s as sleek looking as his brand’s packaging. He designed the space along with his partner, James Lawrence. “We purchased a second floor flat in an old Victorian House in Upper Leytonstone (East London). With the flat came the rights to the attic space, so we undertook a loft conversion and created a whole new floor to our flat.”
They chose to create an upside-down arrangement, so that the kitchen, living room and dining room were on the highest floor to get maximum light in the living areas. It also ensured incredible views of the London skyline in the distance.
The overall goal was to “optimize peacefulness all the while living in a bustling city,” he says. “We get amazing pink-tinged sunsets, full views of the sky, and we can see the landmark buildings in the distance. So, it still feels like we are in London, but away from the hustle and bustle of it all. The best of bold worlds, it allows me to keep the creativity flowing as I work from our dining room table gazing out onto the trees, sky and London skyline in moments where I need inspiration.”
In terms of the design, Bianco shares that he loves mid-century modern, “But we wanted to ensure it didn’t end up looking like a vintage store, so mixed it with some modern contemporary pieces.”
A luxurious bathroom is a rare find in New York City. So co-founder of Kaleidoscope Labs, Ana Rosenstein, especially appreciates hers. Michael Gabellini designed the minimalist but luxurious space. “I like everything to be white, clean, with lots of stone. My towels and bathmats are always solid white, no trim or embroidery. Other than the tray in between the two sinks, I try to hide all of my products in the cabinets and drawers so that the counter never looks cluttered. Bathrooms can easily get messy and overwhelming, particularly for women who have a ton of products and appliances,” she says.
All of her bathroom accessories are Kassatex. “Their stuff is beautifully minimalist and makes any bathroom look polished.”
Co-founder of comfort-focused fashion startup Rec Room, Val Young lives in a stunning two bedroom apartment in the Russian Hill neighborhood of San Francisco. “The original house was built in the 1920s and still has some historic touches of the era like crown molding, working fireplace, and big bay windows in the front rooms. For the living room and dining room, we mixed and matched with midcentury modern style furniture which makes the rooms feel connected and lived in, but the furniture is more streamlined and not too bulky.”
Young is a renter, which can pose certain decorating challenges. “Especially in rented apartments, you’ve got to work creatively with the space you’ve got. For us, the walls are painted a beautiful, but distinctive green, so we opted for more neutral fabrics and lighter finishes including the jute rug in the dining room,” she says.
Founder of lifestyle public relations agency, LWP PR, Lauren Wilson-Policke works from her home office just outside of New York City, in Montclair, New Jersey. “I work from home so creating a calming office area where I could feel relaxed even on the most stressful of days was very important to me. It’s all about the vibe of the environment,” she says.
Light and color were the keys to creating the cheerful, but minimalist space. “I turned this specific room into an office because it gets a ton of natural light. I chose to paint the room this shade of blue because it felt very comforting to me. I love being near an ocean so shades of blue are instant mood boosters.”
Wilson-Policke chose her decor because quite simply, she wanted to be reminded of things that make her happy. “I think it’s important to be surrounded by all of your favorite things while you work. When I’m on a conference call and look around to see all of my favorite books, artwork, photos, and souvenirs from recent travels it makes me happy. I light a candle each morning to set the vibe of the space,” she says.
To achieve a similar look, she recommends finding a well-lit portion of your home or apartment to designate as a home office. “A comfortable desk and chair are must-haves. A cozy or colorful rug is also a great addition. Then bring in some of your favorite items to tie the space together—a great smelling candle, fresh flowers or an inspiration board to keep your goals on track.”