This Brooklyn Brownstone Is a Rainbow of Sunny Colors

Designer Jennifer Jean Morris mixes colors, styles and eras in this Fort Greene, Brooklyn, brownstone.

October 12, 2020

Photo By: Seth Caplan

Photo By: Tamara Beckwith

Photo By: Seth Caplan

Photo By: Michelle Danahy

Photo By: Seth Caplan

Photo By: Michelle Danahy

Photo By: Seth Caplan

Photo By: Seth Caplan

Photo By: Seth Caplan

Photo By: Seth Caplan

Kitchen Overhaul

Brooklyn-based designer Jennifer Jean Morris of JMorris Design loves bringing personality to a space, and this pre-war, 100-year-old Brooklyn brownstone in Fort Greene, Brooklyn, delivers. The home sprawls across almost 3,000 square feet, with 4 bedrooms and 3.5 baths, undoubtedly making it the envy of many city studio dwellers.

Morris fully renovated the kitchen, which she relocated from the parlor floor, a level below, to the garden area. "Moving the kitchen to the garden created a much larger footprint and direct access to the backyard," she says. As for the design, Morris took inspiration from the neighborhood's vibrant mix of cultures, styles and eras. "To convey this feeling, I sought to create a space that blended rustic with sleek, classic with modern, and clean white with exuberant color."

A Home Filled With Festive Color

"The client really wanted color and vibrancy," says Morris (pictured here, in another home project), and the end result is a home filled with bold choices that match the owners' personalities. This preference prevailed over a particular style or era, creating a whimsical journey revealing Moroccan tiles in one room and midcentury modern in another.

Burst of Yellow

The previous kitchen was located at the back of the house. Here, Morris observes how the kitchen's natural light from the bay window peps up the color scheme, as evidenced by the locally sourced, repurposed blue industrial lamp, sunflower-yellow Jonathan Adler Kohler sink and sunburst Moroccan tiles. Morris chose white Caesarstone countertops as a nice contrast.

Bright Sunny Day

"Color is so key in this home," Morris says. This garden entrance features another yellow door, along with a mishmash of styles, from a midcentury modern coat hook to the checkered FLOR rug, one of Morris' go-to picks for clients.

Era Spanning

Bright colors continue into the dining room. "The couple's artwork tells a story in each area of the home," Morris says, citing the multicolored '80s-era cartoon posters. Then there are the hand-blown Niche Modern pendant lights, which were chosen to spotlight the beamed ceiling.

Midcentury design makes an appearance here too; the '60s dining table and chairs were found at a nearby furniture store in Boerum Hill. "Reupholstered dining chairs in a salmon color are cheerful and fun," Morris adds.

Grand Entrance

Wood double doors open into the parlor, where sienna brown Scalamandré wallpaper sets the tone for the unexpected. The doors' windows are original to the home.

Neutral Zone

Similar to the parlor entrance, Morris chose brown and neutral tones for the parlor living room, home to an original fireplace. The mustard sofa by Room and Board isn't seen everyday, but it perfectly unifies the room and is nicely offset by the mosaic tile coffee table and shag ottoman-style rug. Morris says this room is also home to "loved found pieces."

Rainbow Connection

This part of the den channels different eras as well: You have midcentury modern armchairs upholstered in deep blue velvet, '70s-style psychedelic art and a record player — a staple found in many a Brooklyn home.

Energetic Focal Point

The calypso blue alcove and multicolored geometric wallpaper create a strong focal point, and Morris likes the energy they bring to the main bedroom. The bold colors and patterns are tempered by watercolor-esque custom window treatments and original, refinished floors.

Retro Vibe

The retro-inspired wallpaper by Christian Lacroix deserves a closer inspection in order to appreciate the angular rainbow. Nightstands from Blue Dot complete the room's look.

Overall? "We mixed lots of styles and periods and had fun," sums up Morris of this home's renovation.

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