Tour an Interior Designer’s ‘Interwar Technicolor Dream House’

A view of the library and kitchen. Photo: Annie Schlechter

“Rooms need a little meat to keep them from floating away,” interior designer Brock Forsblom says of his new West Village rental, which he shares with his partner, Jeremy Heimans. Most millennials gravitate toward mid-century minimalism, yet 31-year-old Forsblom has gone full-on maximalist. “I call the aesthetic ‘interwar Technicolor dream house,’ ” he says. The couple’s new apartment, in a 1950s building, feels very different from their previous, cobbled-together living space in a brownstone.

It’s one of Forsblom’s first decorating projects since going out on his own after working for high-end decorator Tony Ingrao, and Forsblom enlisted his artist friends to help: Sophie Larrimore, who painted the Fauve-style curtains in the living room and the dining-room niche, and Stefan Kaniecki, who did the living-room wall mural inspired by Boutet de Monvel’s portrait of the Maharajah of Indore from 1934. Forsblom has paired these artist touches with out-of-favor furniture, like a clunky oak cabinet, which he put smack-dab in the middle of one living-room wall. (“I know case pieces aren’t always in vogue these days, but they do make a room say ‘Hello.’ Can you imagine if it were just some skinny console?”) And he opted for boiled-wool fabric for his sofa and a pair of 1950s bentwood chairs, which he upholstered in Clarence House silk tiger velour. Of the chairs, he explains: “It’s my deep, beloved concession to uptown-lady decorating.”

*A version of this article appears in the April 3, 2017, issue of New York Magazine.

Tour a Designer’s ‘Interwar Technicolor Dream House’