Interiorssneak peeks

An East Village Home For A Talented Couple

by Grace Bonney

Airports aren’t known as the most promising sites for real estate deals, but for Amy Chaplin and Jacqui Kravetz, that was where they first discovered the apartment that would become their East Village, NYC home. Amy, a chef, writer and recipe developer and Jacqui, a writer who also works in development and fundraising, were on their way to JFK Airport to visit Amy’s sister in Brazil when they ran into an old friend who was selling her apartment. After returning from their trip, Amy and Jacqui visited the apartment, fell in love with its bright, open spaces and made an offer. They’ve since spent the last 13 years slowly renovating their 1,500-square-foot apartment that they share with their dogs, Percy and Jules.

The 1920s tenement building that houses Amy and Jacqui’s apartment has great bones, so the work they’ve done to their home has been slow and deliberate. Aside from kitchen and bathroom upgrades, the majority of the work Amy and Jacqui ended up doing revolved around refinishing their almost 100-year-old floors and updating to a more modern (and energy-efficient) heating and cooling system. “We wanted to create an airy, light and clean space that was comfortable and great for gatherings,” Amy says. Their upgrades, combined with the abundant natural light from having windows on all four sides of the apartment, have created a light-filled and airy¬†home that is perfect for life and work (Amy developed, tested and shot her entire cookbook in the kitchen and dining room).

Jacqui and Amy love that they’ve created a space that works for their life and for their friends and family to visit often — especially in the spring when the trees on their block bloom with an “explosion of blossoms,” Amy says. I can see why anyone would want to spend time in this beautiful home — it’s clear that 13 years of thoughtful design and decorating decisions have led to a space that feels welcoming and calm. Thanks so much to Amy, Jacqui, Percy and Jules for welcoming us into their home. You can check out one of Amy’s delicious vegan recipes here and her new book here, too. xo, grace

Photography by Stephen Kent Johnson


Jacqui’s office
-Paint color is White Dove from Benjamin Moore
-Table is from New Mexico

Master bedroom
-Paint color is Skimming Stone by Farrow and Ball
-Linen sheets mostly from Mateo
-John Robshaw quilt

Guest bathroom
-Paint color is White Dove by Benjamin Moore
-Waterworks tiles, sink, toilet and fixtures

Amy’s office/guest room
-Skimming Stone paint on the walls from Farrow and Ball

-Henrybuilt cabinets
-Wolf cooktop and oven
-This room and living/dining are all Strong White by Farrow and Ball
-The farmhouse sink and faucet are Waterworks
-The rug is from an antique shop in New Bedford
-Barstools and dining chairs are from Design Within Reach
-Dining table from ABC Carpet and Home
-Pendant milk glass lights from John Derian
-Vintage dog bowl is from Nicky Kehoe
-Collection of handmade wooden spoons from Steven Alan and honey from our friends’ bees in Nantucket

Kitchen Cabinet
-Astier De Vallatte bowls from John Derian
-Large and small mugs from ABC Carpet and Home
-One remaining Japanese tea cup from Takashimya
-Plain white tea cups from Pearl River
-Pink wood bowl from Warm

Living room
-Chairs are handmade by a Belgian company, purchased at John Derian along with the rugs, which are vintage hemp from Turkey
-Lamps are from West Elm
-Pillow on left from Hable Construction
-Grain sack pillows are from The Red Chair in Hudson
-Etching by Amy Cutler
-Candles from various secondhand stores
-Pouf was a gift from Amy’s sister after a trip to Morocco
-The throw is made from a vintage sari

Dining room
-Chandelier from ABC Carpet and Home

Amy and Jacqui's living room. "I love how peaceful this room feels," Amy says. "It has literally taken years to find a rug that works on the white floors and now that we have, I want to be here as much as possible. Percy spends much of her day on the couch." The couch is an old Shabby Chic couch Amy and Jacqui had recovered and then they changed the legs.
The living room shelves actually hold a double layer of books. "[We know] it isn't very practical, but we don't know where else to put them!" Amy says. "There's everything from cookbooks and art books to essays, children's books, new age books and history."
Amy and Jacqui, with their dogs, Percy and Jules.
Amy and Jacqui's favorite sunny spot for reading in the living room.
Amy and Jacqui love the afternoon light in their dining room. "It makes us wish we hosted more lunches and brunches" Amy says. The chandelier is one of Amy and Jacqui's favorite pieces in their home. "I like not having anything on the brick wall to distract from it," Amy says. "We also managed to get great behind-the-scenes photos including it for my book!"
Amy loves their dining room walls so much she shot the cover of her cookbook here.
A gallery of treasured artwork hangs on the dining room wall.
Amy and Jacqui both loving cooking in their home's spacious kitchen. The room is flooded with light in the afternoon, thanks to the room's south-facing windows. The kitchen's Vermont Denby marble counters are one of Amy and Jacqui's favorite things about the room.
The kitchen's neutral color palette is accented by a row of magenta barstools.
Amy loves that from some angles you can see trees reflected in the frosted glass cabinets. "I am pretty obsessed with Astier De Villatte," she says. "Which you can see in the upper cabinet -- just about anything they make makes me happy!"
In addition to her ceramics collection, Amy says that tea is something that brings her joy. "I could drink it all day. I love this strainer from Bellocq and the tiny milk pitcher (I treasure) from Takashimaya."
Amy's office doubles as the guest room. It's also where Amy meditates in the mornings. "It's pretty sparse and feels so peaceful to me," Amy says. "In the afternoon it's flooded with warm light." The desk is the first piece of furniture Amy bought in NYC after moving from London. Next to the desk is a collection of surfaces she uses for photos. Above the desk are photos of Amy's mother, sister and herself in the 70s and one of her father as a baby and of Alfie, their family's Italian Greyhound who recently passed away. There is also an old drawing of Amy's kitchen and dogs by her sister, Bonnie Chaplin, one of Jacqui's watercolors of another dog they used to have (on wood box), and a block print by Hugo Guinness.
The dogs love keeping Amy company while she works. The room's day bed pulls out for guests.
Amy and Jacqui love having a window in the guest bathroom. The hidden shelves in the shower and exposed beams give the space additional function and character.
A detail of the inset shelves in the bathroom shower.
Jacqui keeps a small studio at home, where she (and the dogs) enjoy bright morning light. She found the chair at an antique shop on Second Avenue in NYC and she refinished it herself. The white rabbit was a piece she and Amy found in Bali (it's part of a family of bunnies).
Jacqui found and refinished these reclaimed wood shelves for her office. Her shelves house a collection of wooden bird whistles and vintage cameras. On the upper lefthand corner is a Pat Olezko sculpture that was purchased at an auction. She picked up the skull in Arizona in the early 80s; it's part of a collection of skeletons.
Amy and Jacqui's bedroom. "All of us love to lounge on the king-size bed," Amy says. "We also love the morning light in the room and the north-facing windows that look out to the trees. The small rug we carried back from Bangalow, Australia and the side table was a gift from my father."
Percy naps in her favorite spot in the master bedroom.
The bedroom side table is an industrial sewing table from John Derian's shop in the East Village. "The small jar is a heavenly smelling, organic moisturizer/hand cream called The Baume by Emilie and The stars," Amy says. "I use it every night."
Amy and Jacqui's master bathroom is a sophisticated escape from the city. The reclaimed wood floors were sourced from wood in upstate New York. The shower fixture is from Barber Wilson and the the hooks and stool are from a secondhand store in Hudson, NY. Amy and Jacqui painted and waxed the wall to make it water resistant, using a bold black paint color called 'Raven' by Behr.
The master bathroom mirror is from Upper Rust in the East Village. The sink is from Duravit and the brass faucets are from Barber Wilson, who designed the shower fixture, too.
"What I love most about my home is..."
Amy and Jacqui's floor plan.

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  • Ah, so much space and beauty! The inhabitants (two- AND four-legged) are as spellbinding as the decor. :) I enjoyed this tour so much!

  • Lovely–very intrigued by the wax wall treatment in lieu of a shower curtain. Is there any more specific information on what products were used and how often the shower is used? i.e. does the wax treatment hold up to daily use for two adults? Any information would be appreciated, thanks!

    • Hi Sara,

      We don’t use the shower as we have one in the other bath room–we just loved the look of the whole fixture :). We would need to add a shower curtain ring to use it regularaly. I actaully don’t remember what the product was called but I got advice from a couple of decorative painters and applied a few coats. It holds up fine with the light splashing.

      Hope that helps!


  • Love this place– especially the kitchen! It makes sense that Amy Chaplin would have an amazing space for cooking. I absolutely love _At Home in the Whole Food Kitchen_. It’s one of my go-to cookbooks.

  • Hi! I love the living room, where did you get the couch? I’ve been looking for something similar!

    Amelia B.

    • Hi Amelia,

      The couch was originally from Shabby Chic but we recovered it and had a new cushion made for the seat. I also took off the 3 back cushions to make it deeper.

      Amy x

  • incredible home!!!!!!! dying over the master bedroom and kitchen! wish there was a clearer shot of the bench / big vase with greens / painting. i feel so inspired. thank you!

  • Wow! What a thoughtful ,warm and inviting home . Great job, Amy and Jacqui. I always love it when homeowners are kind enough to share their sources. Nothing like a little injection of Design Sponge inspiration to start the day! Thanks.

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