sneak peek: tiffany schrader-brown

Architectural designer Tiffany Schrader-Brown has designed many renovations throughout her career, but Brooklyn townhouses are her favorite. Three years ago, she and her family moved into this 1899 townhouse in Prospect Heights, Brooklyn, after the completion of not only a gut renovation but also a modern addition above the original structure that she designed and built. The result is a light-filled, family-friendly space that maintains many of its original details. She was able to preserve the old charm of the bedroom floor by repurposing marble fireplace mantles as windowsill seats, as well as keeping the exposed brick and the original doorknobs (minus the lead paint). Tiffany has successfully created a flexible living space for entertaining, spending time with family and letting her son and his best friend (whose apartment is below theirs) run free. Thank you, Tiffany, and thank you to the photographer, Rachel Been, for sending us these lovely photos! You can also check out Rachel’s Sneak Peek here. — Shannon

Image above: Books are important to us, so I built a wall of books that climbs into the double-height space around the kitchen table. Our son and his best friend use the aisle around the kitchen island like a racetrack, taking lap after lap to race, run and laugh.

See more of this renovated Brooklyn townhouse after the jump . . .

Image above: My husband’s late father’s expired passport.

Image above: The Eames rocker is the only piece of nursery furniture that lasts and lasts. Ours made its way to the living room after we stopped rocking our son to sleep.

Image above: My sister is a singer/songwriter, and she started my son early on in lessons.

Image above: The original brick walls are exposed in the bedrooms — you can even see the lintel that supported the short doorway when these rowhouses were constructed. Workers built the entire block at the same time and had a passageway through the middle of our house to easily access the neighboring houses.

Image above: You can see the Empire State Building and the Brooklyn Clock Tower from our roof deck. The backyards of the row houses on our block adjoin the yards of those on the next street down, so it feels like you’re overlooking a huge park divided into long, narrow family gardens. There is tons of light in the winter when the trees are bare, but during the summer you have more privacy, and the backyard view is pure green.

  1. That brick walled bedroom is positively drool-worthy. Love it! Curious where the owners’ snagged that yellow and white hexagon patterned rug. It’s a beauty!

  2. Jamie says:

    How does one obtain a book from the out of reach shelves going up the wall?

  3. Kiti says:

    That little piano is so cute:)…and in general this apartment has a good vibration, would live in there!

  4. The boys racing around the kitchen is such a treat; I love seeing a house being lived in and enjoyed. After living in Brooklyn and Manhattan for some time a while back, I have total roof deck envy! What a fantastic space to be able to enjoy. Thank you so much for sharing!

  5. Faith says:

    Oh wow. I’m jealous.

  6. eric says:

    question: was the brick already exposed or did you remove plaster walls to let it shine through?

  7. Timmi says:

    I was wondering how they get the books down too, swinging rope?

  8. I love the mini-piano adorable.Better to learn on that than an electronic keyboard. And the exposed brick walls…had that in my old place and I miss it sorely. Finally, the dress form is charming. I have one – it’s so useful for draping knit and sewn garments in progress. This is just me, but I wouldn’t have the Obama poster, it’s too common and trite now.

    1. Grace Bonney says:


      I think for a lot of people, that Obama poster means much more than a “trend” to them. It represents a movement or an ideal that some people hope will continue beyond the aesthetic popularity of that one image.


  9. Beautiful, warm and modern. It’s nice to see so many books in the house,!

  10. Sally says:

    This is a truly great space, beautiful design and it just looks so good to live in. And I would also like to know about the books…is there a hidden ladder? This is one of my favorite sneak peeks.

  11. Julie Khuu says:

    Industrial CHIC! That little piano is killing me! Such great effortless style…It’s really all about community…Agreed!

    Peace. Love. LOL!

  12. pepper says:

    I love this. Can I ask where you found the wood “salam” cutout above the bed?

  13. Love the exposed brick and all of the natural light! Beautifully done -what a wonderful place to live! Great spirit!

  14. kimmi syren says:

    Very, very nice personal home!

    Kids and Mom look really content, however the husband/Dad I’m not so sure about. Couldn’t he have at least tried to smile?

    I think it’s a rather sad last picture after such a nice post.

  15. Pragya says:

    I love your home and I’m totally stealing your bookshelf. ;)

  16. Allison says:

    Oh, lovely home — though I too am curious about how you reach the books!

  17. Rosa says:

    love the kitchen, the light, the colors…

  18. I have the same mannequin in our room! Ours is a sexy navy blue and grey and we like to adjust her shapes. I dragged her on a 4hrs Greyhound bus drive home when I visited my mother. The driver didn’t like it (the heavy cast iron legs looked dangerous to him) but I convinced him that I was a desperate seamstress so he let me get it on board. I can’t sow ;) Her name is Geraldine. Before we had children she used to pose next to a tall mirror in our room, lavishly covered with jewelry that I rarely wore but that I loved to look at. Eventually had to remove it from grabby little hands. I tried vintage clothing on her, she was a cool prop for my bags but I think she looks best bare. Now considering filling her up with led lights and a switch for a romantic mood by our bed. Love your space!!

    The husband just looks cool and content, seriously wouldn’t worry about a missing smile.

  19. Kyle says:

    For some reason I’ve never been a fan of the brick wall design but I love that book shelf! The tall open ceiling in that room looks great and I love seeing the kids enjoy the space.

  20. Wendy says:

    Love the bookshelves! I too, am curious as to how you get to the out-of-reach books? Do you have a ladder hidden somewhere?

  21. I love the bookcase! I can’t stop looking at it.

  22. danielle says:

    oh. my. gosh. i seem to say this about a lot of these posts, but really, this house is a dream come true. i mean, that bookcase!!! it is so amazing. I’d love so much to have that! and i love all of the glass. beautiful.

  23. Madelene says:

    I’d love to know where that round white/wood bedside table is from! I want one!

  24. erica says:

    so wonderful — and i completely agree about the obama poster. it captures a kind of energy and an important moment for a lot of us.

  25. lou says:

    is that a philippine passport i see?

  26. Curious says:

    Lovely home, but what is an “architectural designer?” I assume different than “architect.”

  27. jw says:

    I also would love to know where the bedside table is from! Beautiful home.

  28. Margie says:

    Boy, am I feeling my age. While that little piano is cute, the basic idea of it is not unfamiliar to me. Having been born in 1950 I’ve seen a few little toy stand up piano’s like this in my time. Great place. WowQ

  29. Margie says:

    Love the big evergreen branch in the vase in the kitchen.

  30. Anni says:

    White walls, exposed brick, a terrace AND that stunning double height book case in the kitchen. It looks like an amazing place to live!

  31. JillBetty says:

    So jealous of the light, and the brick, and the bookshelves. What a wonderful family home.

  32. Shelly says:

    Such a warm inviting home. Great job! I too love that round white/wood bedside table…is it vintage or new?

  33. truly beautiful and unique, i love the overall design and flow.

  34. Jennifer says:

    This is truly a unique and beautiful home! I would love to know where that bright blue bedspread on the end shots came from. Thank you for sharing your home

  35. Val says:

    LOVE the camel rocking chair. That’s enough to make you want to have kids right there!

  36. Michele says:

    so much easy-going style – was the wooden salam piece made or bought somewhere.?

  37. andrea smith says:

    please tell where the yellow/white hexagon bedroom rug is from…i pretty much need that!

  38. Allison says:

    Also curious about the Salam cutout above the bed. Please reply!

  39. Kerry says:

    also curious about table on right side of bed…

  40. Thanks everyone for all the feedback! The white table is vintage, we purchased the steel Arabic word in Cairo (it means “dream”); and the bedroom rug is from chiasso of all places, it’s called the maze rug. And – how do we get the books? – we designed the counter so we could stand on it to reach up high, and for the even-higher books we reach around the glass handrail in the loft, and we reserve the upper-right corner for deep storage, for which we use a ladder.

  41. MT says:

    The cutout above the bed doesn’t say “salam,” it says “hulm,” which means dream.

  42. Stephanie says:

    What a beautiful home! I live in the neighborhood and am happy to stumble upon this post, as I love to discover how awesome my neighbors are. Wondering where you got your son’s beautiful bed? It looks vintage…

  43. Sheetal says:

    Lovely!! That sunny patio is my dream!

    It’s nice to see you defending whenever someone criticizes , but you don’t have to do it every time. It’s just what your visitors think and are comfortable enough to express on your website.

    1. Grace Bonney says:


      if i actually defended every time someone criticized i’d always be commenting- and i’m not. but i comment when i have something to say just like anyone else. i think sometimes people forget that i have a voice, opinion and take on things just as much as readers do, and sometimes i step in to express that.


  44. mona hamdy says:

    The word isn’t SALAM. It’s HLM, which means ‘dream’ in Arabic. i LOVE IT. Where did you find it?

  45. Meredith says:

    I want that camel rocking chair, too cute

  46. Ana Carneiro says:

    I love the house and the way the light flows from one rooms to the next, such a beautiful renovation!

  47. Kelsey says:

    I love the bedding where is it from?

  48. Samia says:

    I absolutely love the ‘dream’ arabic typography above the bed! Where is that from? Beautiful!


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