Kingston Design Connection Showhouse: Heidi Feiwel | Kingston Design Showhouse 2019 | Hudson Valley | Chronogram Magazine
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Kingston Design Connection Showhouse: Heidi Feiwel 

In the flourishing Airbnb industry, an over-reliance on neutral, even bland colors seems to have emerged: a drab symphony of white and tan. New York-based interior designer Heidi Feiwel aims to buck this trend—by not being afraid of bold, potent and saturated hues in her rooms.

“So much of what you see nowadays is grey, black, white and cream,” she tells Chronogram. “All these neutrals. I can do that, but I also like to infuse color. It’s unexpected, it makes a statement and it’s something unusual.”

Feiwel designed one of the two second floor Airbnbs of the 2019 Kingston Design Connection Showhouse — Jessica Williams of Hendley and Co. helmed the room with the sitting room, but Feiwel designed the bedroom with a new bath off the kitchenette. Inspired by her past surroundings as a fashion stylist for Elle Magazine in Italy and Germany, Feiwel applied a very European love of color with two key principles: balance and contrast.

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For example, she chose a “really pretty, warm, gold” cumin yellow bed, with the headboard and rails painted the same color. (“It’s a very simple bed,” Feiwel says. “You don’t see all the pillows.”)

To continue the theme, she hand-painted tables from New York’s Brothers Painting & Decorating cumin yellow as well. As a visual counterweight, she used a dark blue linen duvet and positioned a tomato red chair near the bed, courtesy of Blu Dot in New York.

As for the furnishings, Feiwel went with a “modern retro” look. A custom rug from Edward Fields features a loop pile/cut pile design. She chose vintage highboy-style American walnut dressers, estimated to have been made in the 1950s or 1960s.

She had Slave Imperative Painting from Bayonne, New Jersey, handle the wall coverings, and Bronze Hill Inc. from New York City paint the trim and doors and install the crown moulding. Knoll created the almond-colored relaxed roman shades, and Custom Decorators installed them.

Overall, Feiwel says there’s a “little bit of a theme of curves” in her second floor Airbnb. “The headboard is slightly curved. The rug has a curve. The armchair from Blue Dot has a curve,” she says. “The 1950s vintage Italian travertine table lamp that’s on the dresser, it has an elephant shape, that has a curve. I really embraced the curve!”

Some designers working on Airbnbs get caught up in the temporary, transitory nature of the space. In the 2019 Kingston Showhouse, Feiwel paid it no mind, opting to approach the room with the care and attention to detail of any guest bedroom.

And no matter the color or shape of the room she’s working on, she seeks “aesthetic elegance with layers of visual generosity,” as the website for her design firm, Luxemark, puts it.

“All the architectural elements — the walls, the floor, the ceiling — they’re all kind of neutral and soft,” she says. “And then on top of that, I lay these bolder shapes and colors. It’s like a balancing act.”

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