The AD100 designer Jamie Drake on decorating his vibrant New York City apartment.
Style is all about evolution. Certainly, AD100 designer Jamie Drake can attest to that. Just think: His first project to land in the pages of Architectural Digest back in 2003 was a study in what Drake calls “complete traditionalism”—the restoration of New York’s 1799 Gracie Mansion for Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg. Now, of course, Drake’s well-known name conjures all varieties of vivid purple and swirling, psychedelic art.
But that, too, may not always be the case. Drake's legendary firm, Drake Design Associates, and rising-star studio Caleb Anderson Design have just announced they are joining forces to form Drake + Anderson.
The New York–based designer Caleb Anderson was his number-one choice. “Caleb embodies all of the attributes that one needs to run a firm,” Drake says, listing off his myriad qualifications. “And he’s charming!” The icing on the cake. Of course, it didn’t hurt that the Texas-born Anderson got his break into the design world with an internship at Drake Design Associates in 2008.
“It’s funny to think back about walking into that office on the first day,” Anderson says. “It really feels like things have come full circle, and I’m beyond humbled.”
What will the partnership look like? By both accounts, the designers will tone down the use of vivid color (though it will certainly not disappear altogether), dial up the antiques, and throw in a dash of the avant-garde.
“It’s continued eclecticism with a cleaner and fresher approach,” Drake says. The new firm’s first projects will include a London townhouse, a glamorous revamp of a Park Avenue duplex, and a clean-slate update of a prewar apartment on the Upper East Side. So just sit tight and you can soon see for yourself.
In the bedroom of a small New York apartment—Anderson’s first solo project—Tom Dixon’s S chair provides a contemporary counterpoint to the client’s antique marble-top bureau. A girandole lamp from David Duncan Antiques shimmers against rich blue walls.
In the dining area of a midtown Manhattan apartment, Anderson designed a brass table and surrounded it with the client’s velvet-covered antique chairs. Eglomise mirrors reflect a large antique crystal chandelier that the decorator purchased in Italy.
In the living room of this SoHo apartment, a faceted brass John Lyle cocktail table and spinal Cervo chair add a dash of contemporary style to the otherwise rather traditional space.
Anderson’s custom-built steel canopy bed, which featured a cantilevered desk as a footboard, was the talk of 2014’s Lenox Hill Hospital Designer Showhouse of New York. It weighed more than 800 pounds, although in situ it looked as light as air. “I had no idea it would be that heavy,” Anderson says. “The bed took six guys to move and had to be remade twice."
Anderson’s scheme for New York’s 2014 Holiday House juxtaposed a Charles Rennie Mackintosh Hill House chair with a Louis XV–style desk from Newel.
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Inside AD100 Designer Jamie Drake's New Apartment in NYC | Celebrity Homes | Architectural Digest