At Home With: Michelle Shekari, Creative Production Manager for The Wing

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Artist sitting on wood-topped stool in brick-walled gallery space with white wood kitchen island and framed prints

Who: Michelle Shekari and Chad Miller
Where: Greenpoint, Brooklyn, New York
Style: Simple, functional modern

When Michelle Shekari and Chad Miller left uber-hip Williamsburg, Brooklyn, they headed north to nearby Greenpoint. And not just for the tree-lined streets and low-key vibe — specifically, they came for this apartment.

"The market is saturated with quick-build 'white box' renovations," says Shekari, a creative producer for The Wing, a women's co-working space. "It's rare to find an apartment with this kind of personality."

Modern upstairs living space with full length windows, grey couch with white pillows, full-length windows, couch, and entertainment center

It was also rare to find a single space that met both of their needs and tastes. Shekari had a penchant for Philadelphia row houses, with their low-slung brick exteriors and three or four-room units. Miller, an art director, was used to living in broad, open industrial warehouse spaces. This particular apartment in Greenpoint had, in many ways, the best of both — a three-story building, with a neighborly feel; new construction where there once was a garage, with remnants of the concrete floors and exposed brick; plus a loft that's not too loft-like. "It's not like you have to climb up a ladder," says Shekari.

Once you're in the loft, there's the other great perk — real outdoor space, with a view of the Manhattan skyline. It's Shekari's favorite place in the home, weather-permitting. They've even grown blueberries there.

Landscape of city from apartment window

Bringing their two points of view together, they've been able to edit out lower-quality, non-essentials and re-curate the things they love — art, books, plants. Says Shekari, "We've found our flow, working together toward a vision, in small and larger ways."

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White contemporary kitchen with white countertops, wood cabinets, black stove burners, and silver sink and faucet with black hanging lights
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The light fixtures came with the apartment, but Shekari and Miller made a point to swap out the harsh fluorescents for warmer hues, and some Edison bulbs, to make the place feel cozier, especially at night.

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Red book on white countertop with plants against black wall with black-framed windows
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Books, art, and other accessories are ever-changing.

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Black metal staircase against brick wall with wood table, white curved chairs, framed print, and small metal cabinet
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The desk was custom built for Shekari and Miller, who often work at home. They had it custom-made in Brooklyn several years ago. "That desk is so heavy but we're committed," Shekari says. The prints, by Dan Kent, are a key focal point along the brick wall.

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Entryway with brick wall, white wall, metal doo, small entryway table, and hung framed print
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Many of the industrial elements came with the apartment.

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Contemporary bedroom with wood cabinets, lamp, plant, white diagram board, brick wall, full-length mirror, and black-and-white bed
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Upstairs, the bedroom is lined with windows along one wall. The throw, by Block Shop in Los Angeles, is one of Shekari's favorite items.

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Contemporary bedroom with wood cabinets, lamp, plant, white diagram board, brick wall, full-length mirror, and black-and-white bed
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The couple chose a warm-wood dresser to help soften the darker, industrial elements of the space.

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Looking-up shot of skylight with brick wall on left side and white wall on right side
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Light pours in through the skylight, on your way up the stairs.


Locals Know Best

Favorite piece of design or architecture in your neighborhood, town or city: In the Greenpoint area, there are so many old facades and old signs that get preserved even while new businesses move in. Those are always super inspirational to be around — you see how much history there is where we live.

On a more modern side, the street art is ever-changing. There's a muralist I love — Tony Sjöman, or Ruben415. He has a piece of work by the L-stop. It's super geometric but also has some warmth and color in it.

Best places for thrift store finds, antiques, or flea markets: There's always Awoke Vintage, it's a cult favorite. But nothing compares to upstate New York.

Best Farmers' market: McCarren Park or McGolrick Park — we bounce back and forth.

Best happy hour: My boyfriend doesn't drink, he's straight edge. So it's usually just an occasional bottle of wine at home.

Best cheap and cheerful restaurant: 'Cheap' is a relative term, right? We're fans of Pheasant on Grand. It's a hidden gem.

Best place to experience art and culture: McCarren Park and Bedford Avenue, really. Just walking around that area, you could people-watch forever.

Best coffee shop:
The Blue Stove

If I were to have visitors, I would take them to:
We are really close to Warsaw, and we love going to shows there. But usually I drag people to where I work at The Wing.


Laura Lambert is a Los Angeles-based writer and editor who covers lifestyle, design, and women's health.

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