An Apartment Fit For a Foodie and Her Bunny

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Diana Yen is the owner of food consulting studio, The Jewels of New York, and the author of A Simple Feast. Inspired by seasonal home cooking, Diana’s work focuses on food styling and recipe development, all with the help of her studio produce specialist, Cleo the bunny. “She’s also fantastic at helping me compost veggie scraps,” jokes Diana.

After living in Soho and Red Hook, Diana decided she wanted to live in a place that felt cozy, but was still a very close commute to Manhattan. So after visiting friends who lived in Brooklyn Heights, she fell in love with the historical architecture and mature trees, and found herself settling on the tree-lined Cranberry Street (how fitting!), not far from the waterfront promenade.

Her one-bedroom rental apartment is airy and flooded with sunlight, and although it’s not as large as her former homes, the charm and picturesque block its on can’t be beat! What’s more, the smaller space makes keeping tabs on Cleo much easier: “She is cage-free and litter trained like a cat, but also chews on everything!” Diana explains. Though she couldn’t make any permanent changes to the space, she’s added storage by installing plenty of overhead shelving and using baskets and decorative bins in every room. Following her move-in, Diana was quick to paint her favorite room in a home, the kitchen, in her favorite hue, “Pink Ground” by Farrow & Ball. “There’s something very warm and feminine about this color that is perfect in the kitchen,” she explains. Following that, she opted for a soft, calming blue-gray in the bedroom, and ivory in the living room, which complements her favorite feature of the home: the decorative mantel.

Though she admits that her furniture is a hodge-podge of gifted, found, handed down or inherited items — and that no planning went into her interior — the result is a personalized and functional space that speaks to Diana’s personality. As she says, “for me, all of my little objects that I collect from here and there eventually help tell the story of a home.”  —Sabrina

  1. Estefi says:

    OH MY GOD, that BUNNY!!!!!!! i feel like this could be a practical joke and she is actually an adorable stuffy!!

    she is precious!!! i need one, too.

  2. Melanie Neill says:

    Is that bunny for real?

    1. Tiffany says:

      Yup, she looks like an Angora! They make lovely pets but have their own special needs. It makes me happy to see someone with one as a pet featured!

  3. Come on! That insanely adorbale bunny doesn’t even look real. Too f***ing cute! :-)

  4. M Kay says:

    I love the woodwork, I hope Clean doesn’t destroy everything. Silly Rabbit! What kind/breed is she?

    1. Tiffany says:

      Probably an Angora with that much fluff to love!

  5. M Kay says:

    darn auto correct – I hope CLEO doesn’t destroy….

  6. Deserae says:

    That bunny! Too cute. Such a charming home, as well.

  7. sally says:

    is that rabbit real? amazing!! It’s great that that the couch cover matches the rabbit.

  8. Emily Nelson says:

    The bunny is the star of this home. I just want to know why isn’t Diana’s favourite thing to do in her home, “Cuddle my bunny”.
    (haha but seriously – gorgeous home!!)

  9. Dani says:

    This is one of my favorite sneak peeks!!! I have a house bunny as well, and we have to lay out our spaces with bunny in mind. It’s wonderful to get inspiration from another house bunny owner, such a lovely space! Such a sweet little bunny!

  10. Anika says:

    I love the triangle print in the bathroom. Where can you find this?

  11. PJFB says:

    I cannot even HANDLE how cute your bunny is. I can’t deal. It’s too effin’ adordable! : )

  12. Linnea Korinek says:

    I think if you provide some soft wood “playthings” for the bunny, she might transfer her affections to something you can more easily replace. Raw wood, to be safer.

  13. Allison says:

    I LOVE all of the vintage touches throughout the home and the cutest bunny alive doesn’t hurt either!

  14. kelly says:

    Beautiful home! Your Cleo is such a little sweet pea! I was wondering where your tea kettle is from? Assuming it is vintage but thought it wouldn’t hurt to ask… :)

  15. Martha says:

    Your bunny is seriously the cutest! And I love the pink Farrow and Ball colour, I will have to remember that one. Your space is lovely, thank you for sharing.

  16. Flora says:

    Love your place it reminds me of our own place. I hope that’s a compliment. And Cleo well….

  17. madlyn says:

    I want to reach into the screen and hug Cleo! She is more than adorable! I love your home.And beware of broken .glass (including ornaments) with your sweet baby

  18. Laura says:

    That bunny is so cute, although I must admit that in the first photo it looked like a bit like a stuffed bunny. :) I totally get the whole “the things we do for our pets” bit – my cat had a habit of clawing into our designer couch, so we had to put a sticky pad on it to make her stop. Fun times!

  19. Brandi says:

    The bunny is stealing the show! Ha. She is so adorable she simply doesn’t look real. How fun it must be to cuddle her. Your home is adorable as well. Great post.

  20. Beautiful place. Cleo is soooo cute!!!

  21. Laurel says:

    Nothing makes a house a home more than having pets around!

    As for the chewing wires/wood problem have you thought about using that stuff that tastes horrible that you can buy to deter nail biting? Gross story of the day is that I have hearing aids (not the gross bit) and in primary school my teacher had to wear this wired up mic called a radio-aid to help me hear better. He used to chew on the wire in an absent minded sort of way and the only way to get him to stop was paint that stuff on!

  22. Ellen says:

    If anyone here is interested in a bunny as a pet, please adopt, don’t shop. Learn all about rabbits first:
    They do make wonderful pets, if you know how to care for them first.

  23. Lili Cardinal says:

    Cleo in action! Watch her as she “bakes” a carrot cake on Youtube:

    I assume it is the same Cleo, as the video is from Jewels of NY.


  24. M says:

    How I would really love DS to do a series on how these people practically live with pantries and cupboards without doors — especially those who use their kitchen a lot. Steam mixed with everyday dust creates a hell of a lot of cleaning just on range hoods and surfaces, let alone having to keep all your dishes and pantry items clean.

  25. yp says:

    Pref little spot and the bunny is just amazing
    I am a foodie and bunny owner too – love the title of the article!

  26. Shannyn says:

    Lovely place and that wabbit, simply unreal!

  27. Such a clever (and pretty) idea using a mirror as a backsplash.

  28. McMary says:

    Bunnies are the new Chickens..but for Urbans? Oh my beautiful stars~

  29. Pandora says:

    That bunny is so cute that she actually looks fake!

  30. Molly says:

    YAY! I am a Cleo fangirl, best Instagram ever. If you want to die of cuteness there are pictures of her in a chef hat! Lovely apartment and it fits so well with the simple yet tasteful Jewels of New York aesthetics.

  31. Eveline says:

    What a beautiful home! I also live in a small apartement with my two bunnies(one who is white and fluffy like your Cleo! ..Though not quite ás fluffy xD)so this is so familiar! Your house is gorgeous and Cleo is adorable <3


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