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Required Reading: A Look Inside ‘Workstead: Interiors of Beauty and Necessity’

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Required Reading: A Look Inside ‘Workstead: Interiors of Beauty and Necessity’

October 22, 2021

Stained-glass windows, a turret, a pool: You’d be forgiven for thinking this historic Colonial Revival house, redone by Workstead, was anywhere but New York City, but you’d be mistaken. Surprising but true: It’s located in Prospect Park South in Brooklyn, updated with care by principal Ryan Mahoney and the Brooklyn- and Hudson-based team.

The project is also a highlight of the studio’s first monograph, Workstead: Interiors of Beauty and Necessity, out this month from Rizzoli, which chronicles Workstead’s first 10 years. (We’ve been admirers for just about as long: Our first post on the firm, way back in 2012, began: “If we were betting on the next breakout star in design, we’d put some money on Workstead.”)

A decade later, join us for an inside look at this historic Brooklyn house, one of 10 iconic interiors featured in the book.

Photography by Matthew Williams from Workstead: Interiors of Beauty and Necessity.

the three story house required careful updating. mahoney and the workstead team 12
Above: The three-story house required careful updating. Mahoney and the Workstead team approached the project with three priorities: preserving the house’s historic details, adding fine millwork, and a encouraging a sense of escape and nature, even in the middle of Brooklyn.
a chandelier by brooklyn based plaster artisan stephen antonson hangs in the en 13
Above: A chandelier by Brooklyn-based plaster artisan Stephen Antonson hangs in the entryway.
the mudroom features a pastoral mural (actually wallpaper by gracie, purveyors  14
Above: The mudroom features a pastoral mural (actually wallpaper by Gracie, purveyors of hand-painted designs since 1898) and a vintage clock.
shades of green—a nod to nature—are a recurring theme throughout  15
Above: Shades of green—a nod to nature—are a recurring theme throughout the project.
built in window seats make use of the large curved windows. 16
Above: Built-in window seats make use of the large curved windows.
an original copper mantel depicts a maritime scene; hanging above is a lithogra 17
Above: An original copper mantel depicts a maritime scene; hanging above is a lithograph by Canadian American artist Philip Guston.
a playful addition: the workstead team sourced a pingpong table from bddw to do 18
Above: A playful addition: The Workstead team sourced a pingpong table from BDDW to double as the dining table; the net is simply removed when it’s time for meals. (Another pingpong-table-as-table we love? An Architect’s Own Playful but Serene 19th-Century House in Rome.)
the kitchen is fitted with cabinets by brooklyn based woodworker markus bartens 19
Above: The kitchen is fitted with cabinets by Brooklyn-based woodworker Markus Bartenschlager, a wide blue island, and terracotta floor tiles for a subtle color-blocking effect.
a round bank of windows is fitted with an eating nook with a wrap around bench. 20
Above: A round bank of windows is fitted with an eating nook with a wrap-around bench. (Also spotted: taper candles in bright, surprising hues, a design detail of the moment.)
a powder room highlights the homeowner&#8\2\17;s proclivity for all things  21
Above: A powder room highlights the homeowner’s proclivity for all things vintage.
the library is painted in a deeper hue: farrow & ball&#8\2\17;s studio  22
Above: The library is painted in a deeper hue: Farrow & Ball’s Studio Green. Look closely and you’ll see carved wooden birds adorning the built-in shelves. The flora-patterned sofa is by Neri&Hu.
a study in textures: the layered, eclectic but neutral main bedroom. 23
Above: A study in textures: the layered, eclectic but neutral main bedroom.
the main bathroom is painted in farrow & ball&#8\2\17;s ammonite. among 24
Above: The main bathroom is painted in Farrow & Ball’s Ammonite. Among the details: a clawfoot tub, a hinoki bath mat, and a framed photograph by Hiroshi Sugimoto.
out to the pool. 25
Above: Out to the pool.

Workstead: Interiors of Beauty and Necessity is now available from Rizzoli; it’s $59.80 via Bookshop.

For more by Workstead, see:

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Frequently asked questions

Who designed the interiors of the Prospect Park South residence?

The interiors of the Prospect Park South residence were designed by Workstead.

What is the aesthetic of Workstead interiors?

Workstead interiors combine beauty and functionality to create timeless spaces.

What is the overall design concept of the Prospect Park South residence?

The overall design concept of the Prospect Park South residence is a modern interpretation of a classic Brooklyn brownstone.

What materials were used in the design of the Prospect Park South residence?

Materials used in the design of the Prospect Park South residence include marble, brass, steel, and wood.

What is the color scheme of the Prospect Park South residence?

The color scheme of the Prospect Park South residence is a mix of subdued and bold hues, including neutrals, blues, and greens.

What kind of lighting fixtures were used in the Prospect Park South residence?

Workstead used a mix of custom and vintage lighting fixtures in the Prospect Park South residence.

What is the source of inspiration for Workstead's designs?

Workstead's designs are inspired by nature, historic architecture, and the art of craft.

What kind of furniture pieces were used in the Prospect Park South residence?

Workstead used a mix of custom and vintage furniture pieces in the Prospect Park South residence.

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