This Couple Totally Figured Out How to Meet Each Other Halfway (in Decor, at Least)

When Shelly Lynch-Sparks and her wife, Anna Maltezos, moved into their South Williamsburg, Brooklyn, apartment it was a white box with neutral finishes. A blank canvas might be intimidating for some, but not Lynch-Sparks, founder of New York design firm Hyphen & Co. She took the lead in the design, working to merge both of their styles into a comfortable, personalized home. "My wife gave me space to explore different design techniques," says Lynch-Sparks. "She gives me a lot of freedom to experiment with design." (Aww!)

The palette blends the couple's favorite hues, including black (Maltezos), navy, and earth tones (Lynch-Sparks). The end result celebrates their individual and collective tastes for a home that's truly "them." But that doesn't mean Lynch-Sparks is done. "As a designer, [I] have access to so many different options for furniture, lighting, and fabrics," she says. "The options are endless. Deciding on these pieces was tricky and, of course, I'm at the point now where I'm ready to redesign and do it all over again."

Living Room with earth tones
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credit: Claire Esparros

A large L-shaped sectional from Article makes the living room a prime spot for entertaining and helps separate the space from the open kitchen and office area. Lynch-Sparks found the fabric for the custom pillows at a store in Harlem that specializes in hand-dyed African textiles, and the vintage chair was recovered in leather with velvet piping.

Living Room with guitar on display
credit: Claire Esparros

"The inside of a suit jacket would be my inspiration for color palette and texture, where Anna is a bit more rock-and-roll," says Lynch-Sparks. "We drew inspo from her guitars and boho rock-and-roll vibe." To wit: An electric guitar and amp fully on display.

kitchen with bar seating
credit: Claire Esparros

To warm up the kitchen, Lynch-Sparks added teak veneer to the base of the island and installed custom pendant lights from Barn Light Electric.

small home office
credit: Claire Esparros

Maltezos's home office is tucked next to the living room. Lynch-Sparks applied wood cladding by Stikwood, breaking up the white walls.

bedroom with navy floral wallpaper
credit: Claire Esparros

Floral wallpaper adds a feminine contrast to the custom wood headboard in the bedroom. Floating shelves maximize storage without taking up floor space.

bedroom with navy floral wallpaper
credit: Claire Esparros

A vintage chair and custom-painted vintage dresser sit in the corner of the bedroom. "We wanted the space to have bold accents but still feel warm," the designer says. "We also didn't want to lose texture, which is why we selected florals and mixed patterns throughout the space."

Bathroom with green wallpaper
credit: Claire Esparros

Chasing Paper wallpaper brightens up the Jack and Jill bathroom. "Or as I say, Jill and Jill," adds Lynch-Sparks.

small patio with bench seating
credit: Claire Esparros

The couple installed tile and added cushioned benches from IKEA to create a functional patio space. "IKEA is great for outdoors if you have a small budget," says the designer.

small patio with plants
credit: Claire Esparros

On the other side of the patio is a custom butcher block bench and a West Elm table topped with pots from Anthropologie.


Elizabeth Stamp

Elizabeth Stamp

Elizabeth Stamp is a freelance writer splitting her time between New York and Los Angeles. Her work has appeared in Architectural Digest, Elle Decor, and CNN Style.