Saffron Marigold Takes Manhattan! (An “Ask the Designer” Adventure in NYC)

Updated: May 27, 2015

Leah writes:

My husband and I have a new 1-bedroom apartment in Manhattan which
we’d like to furnish.  I came across your website and really love the
merchandise, especially the arrangement you made using “Dance of
Peacock,” in a mid-century modern setting
. (My husband loves MCM but I

don’t want to use too much of it.)

I would appreciate your input in furnishing our living room, so I
have enclosed some pictures. (The walls are yellow-green, Benjamin Moore “Polar
Light”.) I would like to frame a beautiful view with some curtains,
but our ceilings are 108 inches, so they would probably need to be
custom-made. If possible, could you also give me some ideas for a rug
and some accessories?

living room decorating ideas
Dance O Peacock Curtain Panel

ze Carlos Barretta NYC photo
NYC – Ze Carlos Barretta

Leah, I’d love to share some ideas for your new apartment!  I agree with you that our Dance O Peacock print is ideal for your space and tastes.  It can easily touch on a mid-century modern look, and yet is flexible enough to encompass other genres of design.  In addition, the palette is perfect for both your paint color and woodwork.

Leah’s Living Room (and Books!)

peacock feather curtains
Leah’s new Manhattan apartment

Leah’s new apartment has enviably high ceilings, spectacular views, and lovely parquet flooring.  Our design concept for this lovely living room is a softened mid-century/eclectic look, centered around the pale green wall color and crisp jewel toned cotton curtain panels.

New York Apartment renovation ideas
An Alternate View of Leah’s Space


Furnishings and Accessories

Blue and Green Living Room Ideas
Dance O Peacock Accent Pillow

living room decor
Dance O Peacock Table Runner and Napkins

Leah intends to frame her New York view with Dance O Peacock curtains.  We can use linens from the same collection to create a cohesive theme, and to soften her husband’s mid-century pieces.   If she adds an accent pillow to the black and honey chairs on either side of the credenza, and tops the credenza with a table runner, she’ll really unify and brighten the space.

living room design
West Elm, Tulip Chair in Honey

Living Room Accessories
Angelica Table Lamp, Currey & Co.

turquoise living room decor
Turquoise Glass Vases, Horchow

Pale green and honey ochre are the predominant tones in this room.  As such, accent pieces that pick up on the  lovely blue tones in the Dance O Peacock linens will add interest and balance to the space.  Leah is displaying a cobalt glass bowl, which is perfect for this scheme!  (Don’t you love it when you already have what you need for your design?)

Floor Coverings

living room decor
Corinth in Cerulean Blue, New Moon Rugs

peacock living room decor ideas
Awash Rug, Anthropologie

ideas for living room decor
Ivory Rug,

Again, blues rule in the floor coverings.  The top two rugs, from  New Moon and Anthropologie respectively, are faded and neutralized blues.  This creates a wash of color which is not overwhelming, but which can be teased out all around the room.  I couldn’t resist this distinctly patterned, bright ivory rug from Addarug, however.  It just may be the best fit of them all!  I love how the swirls mimic the organic feather emblems in our Dance O Peacock fabric.

Wall Art

Photography decor
St. Patrick’s Cathedral, Eye Shutter to Think, Etsy

Ideas for Living room decor
Brussel Round Mirror, Pottery Barn

Living room decor ideas
Light as a Feather, Lovelysweetwilliam, Etsy

Leah and her husband have wonderful wall space, and she already has a large framed floral print ready to hang.  To maximize the existing artwork, and to really play into the sense of scale in the room, I suggest creating a grouping around Leah’s floral print.  The space above the credenza is a natural place to start.  The St. Patrick’s Cathedral print is beautifully reminiscent of our peacock feathers, and also brings in local color.  A round mirror interrupts the predominantly “square” landscape, brings light and echos the tones in Leah’s gorgeous full length mirror opposite.  Finally, a neutral feather print brings subtle organic beauty to the room.

Custom Curtains

DIY custom draperies
Dance O Peacock Cotton Tablecloth (120″x70″)

how to make curtains
Dance O Peacock table runner (120″x18″)

Leah is correct that she will need custom curtains to cover her expansive windows.  In order to create custom curtains that can fall from the 108″ ceilings, she should purchase our largest rectangular table cloth and two of our largest table runners.  This will provide the amount of fabric she will need.  The table runners will make a lovely border for the curtains when used vertically along the edges of each panel.

Living Room Design Ideas
Joe’s Fabrics, 102 Orchard Street New York, NY 10002-3106

ideas for living room decor
Map to Joe’s Fabrics

If sewing the curtains herself seems daunting for Leah (it would be to me!),  Maria Roland, of the famed Joe’s Fabrics on the Lower East Side, says that they would be more than happy to create Leah’s custom Dance O Peacock curtains for her.


Per our conversations, I am providing Leah with some sketches of the “Tablecloth and Runner” curtain idea…

peacock feather curtain ideas

As well, based on an idea Leah had, I sent her a sketch of her windows dressed with two Dance O Peacock Valences along with sheers…


Leah had a few more questions about what might work for her bath and kitchen spaces.  I’ll address those in a subsequent post.

So glad that NYC came through Hurricane Irene without much damage…  Hope this week brings lots of sunshine!




4 thoughts on “Saffron Marigold Takes Manhattan! (An “Ask the Designer” Adventure in NYC)

  1. Well this just answered a BUNCH of questions I’ve had as I’ve been recently obsessing over the Dance O Peacock curtains for my bedroom! I’ve been planning on contacting you about custom curtains, but now I know and I LOVE the idea of using the table runner, wow!

    It is such a fabulous print and I can’t thank you enough for explaining how to make it work and the bonus of all the other coordinating tips. Awesome!

    1. Lauren,
      So glad this helps! (I completely understand the obsession with the Dance O Peacock print. Really, I do.) You know, if you have time, and you do create custom curtains, I’d love to see what you end up with! Maybe we could even use your work as a tutorial for other readers… Thanks for commenting!

      – Heidi

  2. Dear Heidi,

    Thank you for your detailed response to my inquiry. My husband and I absolutely LOVE what you put together. I have just emailed Joe’s Fabric Shop for an estimate and expect to hear back from them shortly. (I might need your help explaining to them exactly what to do.) I also wondered if the material can be used to make matching window shades.
    We especially loved the “Corinth in Cerulean Blue” rug, though it’s probably beyond our price range.


    1. Leah,

      So glad you like the recommendations! I’m sure your space and tastes will combine to make a wonderful home. 🙂

      I’m happy to talk through some ways to make the custom curtains you’re interested in. Also, Saffron Marigold can do custom orders. Here is a link to that resource:

      Look forward to finding out how this project progresses!

      – Best,

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