Sonja Morgan’s NYC Apartment Revamp
Curated by Rose Ott
When The Real Housewives of New York City star Sonja Morgan's daughter left for college, she downsized from her famed Upper East Side townhouse to new Columbus Circle digs. Casaza designer Rose Ott is helping Sonja design the new apartment to work for her busy lifestyle.
Now that my daughter is off to college, I don’t really need so much house as I did when she was in boarding school and brought so many girlfriends home to sleep over. It’s a different time in our lives. Having less square footage to obsessively maintain on a daily basis gives me more free time to flex my creative muscles by going back to my roots at FIT. It’s been fun; I have now launched my ready-to-wear collection, in addition to my 2015 signature fashion collection.
Anyone who knows me knows #pinkismycolor. In fact, it has a dedicated section on my website for my fashion collection, and it’s the color of my living room and kitchen. Even the beige used my townhouse has a rose hue to it — Always flattering. I avoid colors that are not flattering to the skin tone.
I’m pretty happy with my living room as far as my gorgeous Arhaus sofa but the beautiful Nicole Miller Flokati shag rug has proven to be a challenge with my fireplace and production traffic. I need this area to work for both my work and my parties. I want this room to feel clean and white against my Slim Aarons-inspired pink walls.
In my new apartment I would like a crossover between classic French and Italian as I do in my townhouse but with a fresh modern flair. I’m a huge fan and follower of Bunny Williams. She knows how to mix wood tones and styles perfectly.
Space is the biggest challenge. Downsizing has its benefits as far as being a physical and emotional lift, however fitting what I need in a small space after being used to a house is a learning curve. I feel like I’m back to college graduation!
I’m running my business out of my apartment, so I need a flexible workspace and accommodations that keep my clothes, my line, and my life organized. Extra closet space for my fashion samples and more dresser space for my folded clothes would help the bedroom and living room feel light and airy, without the clutter.
I’m excited to add a professional touch to my eclectic vision. I really need the help! I’m still very busy filming Real Housewives, appearances and my philanthropy, all of which I love, including my new pied-à-terre. I’ll have more freedom when my home is designed to fit my lifestyle.
Sonja’s apartment is gorgeously unique in that it incorporates many historic pieces of furniture from the Morgan family collection while staying true to her bright style. I’m excited to work with these fantastic antiques and so many new Casaza pieces I can’t wait to bring in.
Downsizing is always a positive thing as it helps you reduce the clutter in your life, but it can be overwhelming to figure out what to store, what to keep, and where to put it all. Space planning is one of the most important things a designer does as they are able to balance the old with the new in a visually-stimulating way.
In the bedroom, we’re going to bring in an armoire that can house and display the beautiful pieces from her fashion line without overwhelming the room. You know how we all have that one chair that piles up laundry? Clutter be gone with a beautiful storage piece.
The biggest issue is storage, so we’re mainly focusing on her bedroom. Sonja is currently using it as a sleep-meets-work space. When your desk is in your line of sight from your bed, it can interfere with your sleep schedule and become difficult balancing your working hours. We plan to move the desk out to the far corner of the living room so she can easily collaborate with her interns and assistants while still maintaining the living space for her routine social life.
We’re going to maintain an asymmetrical design by moving her art to one side of the room while building out her storage options, but we want to make sure it’s all to scale. She has a beautiful lamp next to the bed which we’ll swap out for a larger lighting option, but we’ll find space for it elsewhere.
The room is painted haint blue, a pale shade of blue that’s popular in Southern homes to ward away evil spirits. We’re going to keep this color, which is perfect as it evokes a sense of calm. It pairs well with earth-tones, which we’ll be bringing in through new pieces of decor.
I’m excited to help Sonja find some work-life balance in this colorful apartment.