Remembering the Kips Bay Decorator Show House – Part I

The Kips Bay Decorator Show House…

I can’t believe it’s been three months already! What an amazing experience (and challenge) it was! Ten weeks of hard work, a race against time. Nevertheless, it was so much fun.

That is why I want to write a bit about the project and therefore, the upcoming posts will be all about it. Want to know how it was, how we made it? Keep reading!


What is it?

Each year, celebrated interior designers transform a luxury Manhattan home into an elegant exhibition of fine furnishings, art and technology. Bonus: it’s for a good cause!

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The show helps raise critical funds for much needed after school and enrichment programs for New York City children. Over the course of four decades, this project has grown into a must-see event.

For the 44th edition, Les Ensembliers has been chosen to be a part of this project that brings together 21 designers selected from more than 2500 applications. The chosen building, the Carlton House Townhouse, is located in the Upper East Side. The suite assigned to Les Ensembliers consists of two rooms dedicated to Madame’s dressing room.

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This honour is all the more important as we were the only Canadians to participate in this project which brings together the top American designers. This confirms our “relevance” and position as an industry leader. It is a significant entrance into the U.S. market that will pave the way for our company’s growth and expansion abroad.


The idea

When we set out to design the ultimate dressing room, we created a story to help define and connect the space. This boudoir is the inner sanctum of a sophisticated, well-travelled woman with a strong character and creative mind. It is more than a dressing room: it is a quiet sanctuary, it is her Jardin Secret.

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We also followed our design philosophy of building meaning into beauty by taking inspiration from the historic lines of the building’s art deco limestone façade. Having work with historical houses before, we know it is important to respect those architectural details by finding ways to enhance them.


The suite

The dressing is actually composed of two rooms including one with two windows overlooking the famous Barney’s store on 61st street. Since the visitor needs to pass through the first room in order to get to the second, we wanted each one to inspire its own mood or emotion.

Floor plan

Floor plan

A role for every room

A role for every room


The passageway included wall-to-ceiling shelving to provide storage for our muse. On the opposite wall, a series of frames tied the room together. In the boudoir, a functional build-in console mounted by a wall-to-wall three way mirror created a momentum before entering the actual dressing.

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It was important for us that the room remained balanced. We then decided to put an octagonal make-up table in the center of the room while four bespoke armoires added symmetry to the ensemble.

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The project was set but we still had a lot of details to work on, including the ceiling, but this will be the subject of my next post. More to come!