ISSUE 55  |  Roman Holiday

Ancient Meets Modern in a Milan Apartment

January 15, 2013 4:15 PM

BY Meredith Swinehart

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This Milan apartment requires a careful look; blink and you'll miss the juxtaposition of a 1950s lamp next to an 18th-century door frame. Why is it such a challenge to take it all in? Because it blends together so flawlessly.

Britt Moran and Emiliano Salci of Dimore Studio, who live in the space (their studio is on the ground floor), describe their mission as "crossing over boundaries momentarily in vogue; creating interiors evocative of far-off and distant times." Clearly they're onto something; their fans include Ian Schrager, who commissioned them to bring the Pump Room at the Public Hotel in Chicago back to life. To see more of their work, go to Dimore Studio.

Photography by Emanuele Zamponi via Yatzer:

Above: In the living room, ceramic jugs and vases flaunt a cheerful cluster of ranunculus.

Above: On the wall is a Rotating Sconce by French designer Serge Mouille; designed in the 1950s, the lights are still manufactured in France.

Above: Among the apartment's many furnishings from the 1940s and 1950s is a Diamond Chair by Harry Bertoia (in the back corner). On the coffee table lies The World of Ornament by David Batterham, published by Taschen. (I recognize the massive volume because it is sitting next to me on my desk as I type.)

Above: A glass chandelier, evocative of a honeycomb, hangs in the foyer. (Would this be a real Milano flat without an oversized chandelier?)

Above: An elegant juxtaposition of styles in the kitchen includes a distressed cupboard wall unit installed with modern uplighting to highlight the artwork sitting atop it.

Above: A perfect pairing of old and new: paint is falling away from the settee and radiator, but the velvet cushions and concrete floor look brand new.

Above: Another modern insertion: a marble Tulip Table by Eero Saarinen.

Above: A kitchen island clad in oxidized metal is lit from within via fluorescent strip.

Above: An antique trifold mirror turns a corner of the bedroom into a dressing room (and hides an aging radiator).

Above: The calming bedroom repeats a small handful of colors: mainly blue, ivory, brown, and brass.

Above: An antique framed textile hangs over a pair of dressers.

Above: More of the same palette in a vintage bedroom fan (joined by antique-pink peonies).

Above: In the blue-velvet sitting room, note a modern detail used throughout the home: two bands of inky black paint to mimic decorative baseboards.

Above: The sitting room walls' ethereal gray paint stops sharply at the ceiling, emphasizing its dramatic height. Note another modern design icon, Castiglioni's Arco Floor Lamp, at left.

Looking for more Italian style? See 159 images of design in Italy in our gallery of rooms and spaces.